Lesley Downer

Album Notes

The Tale of Genji: A Visual Companion


Princeton University Press 253pp £35 order from our bookshop

In 1510 a wealthy Japanese man called Sue (pronounced Sué) Saburō took possession of a magnificent album of paintings and calligraphy illustrating The Tale of Genji. He had commissioned it for his father, Sue Hiroaki, then governor of the province of Hyōgo (now Kobe) and a famous scholar. A few years later Hiroaki had the album leaves pasted onto screens to be used as a backdrop for a series of lectures on The Tale. The album ended up at Harvard Art Museums.

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