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Ezoshi [Yezo Journal]
[Yezo Journal]
Hakuseki Arai, copier unknown, eighteenth to nineteenth century
Manuscript book, Japanese-style binding
Japanese Rare Book Collection, Asian Division,
Library of Congress (007.00.00)

Ezoshi by Hakuseki Arai (1657–1725) is one of the oldest descriptions of the Ainu people and Hokkaido, Sakhalin, and the Kuril Islands.  Hakuseki Arai, a highly respected Confucian scholar, historian, poet, geographer, and statesman, examined a large number of documents collected by others who traveled to the Ainu lands.

The displayed edition consists of colorful illustrated copies, originally drawn by an anonymous artist, who produced them based on actual observations of the Ainu and their daily life.  The copy is stamped with the accession date “July 23, 1934” and was possibly a gift from the collection of Frederick Starr (1858–1933), an anthropologist who visited northern Japan and brought back with him a representative group of Ainu people in 1904.


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  • Announcing the Japanese Collections Display at the Library of Congress
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  • Hokashu [Collection of Precious Amusing Tanka Poems]
  • Heike Shosetsu (a.k.a Heike Mabushi, Heike
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  • Miyako Rinsen Meishō Zue [Pictorial Guide to Gardens in Kyoto]
  • Shigure
  • Ezoshi [Yezo Journal]
  • Hiroshige Gajō [Hiroshige Sketchbook]
  • Genji Monogatari (a.k.a. Eiri Genji Monogatari) [Illustrated Tale of Genji]
  • Beikoku Gikai Toshokan Sakanishi Shiryō [Library of Congress Sakanishi Manuscripts]
  • Kafu Kaigi Hōkoku [Official Reports from Washington Conference]
  • Kanikōsen [The Crab Factory Ship]
  • Fujin Gahō [Graphic Magazine for Women]
  • Tetsuwan Atomu [Mighty Atom]
  • Kokusai Kenchiku Jiron / Kokusai Kenchiku [International Architecture]
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  November 15, 2010
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