Bakemono no e

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Bakemono no e (化物之繪, "Illustrations of Supernatural Creatures"), also known by its alternate title Bakemonozukushie (化物尽繪, "Illustrated Index of Supernatural Creatures"), is a Japanese handscroll of the Edo period depicting 35 bakemono from Japanese folklore. The figures are hand-painted on paper in vivid pigments with accents in gold pigment. Each bakemono is labeled with its name in hand-brushed ink. There is no other writing on the scroll, no colophon, and no artist's signature or seal.[1]


Bakemono no e is held by the L. Tom Perry Special Collections of the Harold B. Lee Library at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, US and is part of the Harry F. Bruning Collection of Japanese rare books and manuscripts. It is thought that Harry F. Bruning (1886–1975) acquired the scroll from Charles E. Tuttle (1915–1993).[1] Bakemono no e is thought to have been produced in the late 17th or early 18th century. Most of the bakemono illustrated are also found in other scrolls and books of the Edo period, with a few exceptions.[1]

Scholarly interest[edit]

Nurikabe from a scroll dated 1802 by Kanō Tōrin Yoshinobu (狩野洞琳由信) in the collection of Kōichi Yumoto.

The scroll came to the attention of Japanese scholars and the famous manga artist Shigeru Mizuki (1922–2015) in 2007 when digital images of the scroll were shared with Kōichi Yumoto (ja:湯本豪一), then curator at the Kawasaki City Museum (ja:川崎市市民ミュージアム). Yumoto was surprised to find an image of a three-eyed bakemono clearly labeled "Nurikabe" in the BYU scroll that matched an unlabeled illustration of the same figure in a scroll Yumoto owns.[2][3][4] The Nurikabe image later became the topic of scholarly debate in Japan.[3][5][6][7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Bakemono no e." Retrieved 2018-12-03.
  2. ^ "ゲゲゲの「ぬりかべ」、こんな姿? 江戸期の絵巻に登場". (in Japanese). August 7, 2007. Archived from the original on December 4, 2018. Retrieved 2018-12-03.
  3. ^ a b "Nurikabe ga egakareta nazo no yōkai emaki". Kwai. 24. Tokyo: Kadokawa Shoten. February 2008. pp. 12–19. ISBN 9784048839921.
  4. ^ Yumoto, Kōichi (2018). Konjaku yōkai taikan: Yumoto Kōichi korekushon. Tokyo: Pie International. p. 38. ISBN 9784756243379.
  5. ^ Yumoto, Kōichi; Katō, Osamu; Kyōgoku, Natsuhiko; Tada, Katsumi; Murakami, Kenji (February 2008). "Tokubetsu zadankai: Futatsu no yōkai emaki kara nurikabe no nazo o saguru". Kwai. 24. Tokyo: Kadokawa Shoten. pp. 118–123. ISBN 9784048839921.
  6. ^ Yumoto, Kōichi (July 2011). "Tachifusagaru nurikabe no nazo". Kwai. 33. Tokyo: Kadokawa Shoten. pp. 262–265. ISBN 9784048851008.
  7. ^ Foster, Michael Dylan (2015). The book of yōkai : mysterious creatures of Japanese folklore. Oakland: University of California Press. pp. 140–141. ISBN 9780520959125. OCLC 893735854.

External links[edit]