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|Author :||HOTAN, Priest. [ZUDA ROKASHI]|
|Title :||NANSEN BUSHUU BANKOKU SHOHKA NO ZU: BUDDHIST MAP OF THE UNIVERSE According to Zuda Rokashi [aka: Monk/Priest Hotan]. A Spetacular Woodblock Printed Buddhist Cosmological Map.|
|Description of Contents...|
|An excellent fine early example of a woodblock printed map, |
with Chinese text. This is the first Japanese world map
drawn according to Buddhist cosmology & the prototype for
all other later Buddhist world maps done in Japan until the
end of the 19th century.
THE ARTIST AND AUTHOR:
Hotan [aka Zuda Rokashi 1654-1728], was the author, artist,
editor, scholar and Buddhist priest, he was also the famous
founder of Kegonji Buddhist Temple in Kyoto. He was an
eminent Buddhist priest and scholar who reconciled new
information from the West with Chinese sources. The work is
signed "Rokashi," which means "mapmaker and editor."
This map gave the hitherto isolated Japanese "a way to see a
wider view of the world, but one that they could easily
understand...his map was widely acclaimed for the
numerous place names he furnished for Indian & Asian areas..
very rare in Western maps..."
Quoted from Namba, see below.
The map is centered on Jambudvipa the mythological heart
of Buddhist cosmography in India. This very vital spot is
noted by a horned animal who's breath is a long spiral of
flame emanating from the most sacred & holy Buddhist place
on the earth. Europe appears as a string of islands. A land
bridge connects China with an unnamed continent to its
East, which "must undoubtedly be a reflection of America" in
the opinion of the celebrated Japanese scholars.
Per Rudolph [see below], on p.92, she states: "This map is
descended from a line of Japanese manuscript maps based on
the journey of the Chinese priest Xuangzang's pilgrimage to
India in search of scriptures. Scholars believe that the
maps were originally copied out as a from of devotion--a
pilgrimage of the spirit if not the body--and that later
versions like this, which includes South America,
demonstrate an attempt to reconcile sacred geography with
the examples of European cartography that were reaching
Japan through Dutch traders and, via China, Jesuit
WHAT ONE MODERN CARTOGRAPHIC SCHOLAR SAYS:
Cartographic scholars Prof. Oda discuss the Northern most
Japanese island of Ezo where the Ainu lived is located on
this map just slightly South of the mystery continent which
is actually American. Africa is a diminutive land mass. To
the far West is a small island empire identified as "Country
of Western Women" along with other mountainous island
kingdoms, likely England, Scotland and Ireland. The map
text includes a list of Buddhist Sutras, Chinese histories,
literary classics &c. All drawn by Hotan, which "Illustrates
the fusion of Buddhist dogma and Western geographical
knowledge." See Oda below.
The basic outlines of the map are copied from a Buddhist
prototype, the Gotenjiku Zu [MAP OF THE FIVE INDIES], whose
characteristic features was the shield-shaped continent of
Jambu-dvipa. Jambu-dvipa was the habitable world according
to the Buddhist cosmographical view. In this example the
sacred lake of Anavatapta can be seen in the centre, from
which flow four rivers in a whirlpool pattern. Jambu-dvipa
can be equated topographically with the Indian peninsula,
Lake Anavatapta symbolizes Lake Manasarovar in the Himalayas
and the four rivers represent the Ganges, Oxus, Indus and
Tarim. In order to preserve the traditional Buddhist
outlines and at the same time incorporate the new knowledge
of Western geography, the European and American countries
are shown as small islands on the periphery of
Jambu-dvipa. Although an amalgam of discordant ideas, the
map became one of the most popular and widely circulated
works of the day and served as a model for all later
Buddhist maps." Quoted from Jones, see below.
This is the first Japanese map to show Europe, Africa and
This is an important early Buddhist relic and classic,
considered a land-mark of early Buddhist cartography. Maps
of this subject and Deluxe size are RARE and were seldom
printed, they are not commonly found on the open market.
Early Buddhist maps of this Deluxe grandeur and caliber are
always quite R A R E !
By and large, very good condition, a few old tiny worm
holes, most neatly mended, two very small and faint stains,
otherwise a very clean solid copy. Entirely hand-printed
by woodblocks on very white hand-made Kozo fiber Washi
paper. In the original covers, scuffed and edges worn, but
the subtle original blind-stamped traditional Buddhist
swastika design still there. Printed on several sheets of
Japanese Washi, hand-made paper, then joined to make a
Deluxe and grand size work. Folded by the publisher.
Being a famous work there are many scholarly studies and
cartographic references on this marvelous Deluxe size map.
Shintaro Ayusawa: WORLD MAPS MADE IN JAPAN'S AGE OF
NATIONAL ISOLATION, in Imago Mundi 10, , pp.123-8.
On page 124 he cites the map and says " World maps
representing Buddhist cosmology. The earliest map of this
type is the NANSENBUSHU BANKOKU SHOKA NO ZU" and is also
illustrated as his figure 2, which is this exact map we now
BEANS, George H. A LIST OF JAPANESE MAPS OF THE TOKUGAWA
ERA. LIST item 1710.1, and the illustration facing
p.21 matches this exact item.
H. Cortazzi: ISLES OF GOLD, p.38 and plate 48 again matches
ours, but that one he cites found in Kobe City Museum is
with [later] hand-coloring and is a poor and stained copy
with loss. Ours is a much better copy.
Muroga and Unno: IMAGO MUNDI, vol. 16, 1962, pp.49-69,
illustrated as figure 9, Hotan p.62-63..
K. Unno, Cartography in Japan, 1994, pp. 346-477 and
M. Namba et al.: OLD MAPS IN JAPAN, p.13, plate 8.
Yolande Jones et al: CHINESE AND JAPANESE MAPS: In a British
Library Exhibition 1974, see 2nd page of Japanese listings,
T. Oda et al.: THE WORLD IN JAPANESE MAPS UNTIL THE MID-19TH
CENTURY, plate 6, page pp. 20-21.
THE COMPASS FOR MAP COLLECTORS, an antiquarian map dealer's
catalogue, February 1988 as item number 1.
J.B. Harley & David Woodward: CARTOGRAPHY IN THE TRADITIONAL
EAST AND SOUTHEAST ASIAN SOCIETIES, volume 2, book 2:
pp.427-429, fig. 11.59 & color plate #29. Ahead of title:
The History of Cartography.
K. Yamashita, JAPANESE MAPS OF THE EDO PERIOD, pp.32-33,
H. Kerlen: CATALOGUE OF PRE-MEIJI JAPANESE BOOKS & MAPS IN
PUBLIC COLLECTIONS IN THE NETHERLANDS, p.19, no. 44.
M. Ramming: Imago Mundi, v.10, pp.123-127, ,
"Remarks to reproduced Japanese maps", Imago Mundi, v.10, p.
128. The map reproduced as fig. 2, facing p. 124. Map is
described as " ... prototype of Buddhist world maps." on
p.124 "... whose main distinctive feature is their
completely unscientific character." see p.128.
Ayusawa Shintaro: THE TYPES OF WORLD MAPS MADEIN JAPAN'S AGE
OF NATIONAL ISOLATION. [Imago Mundi GAI I31, v.10:
p.123-128]; the last page has an article by M. Ramming: note
2 discusses this map, He notes the map was reprinted by the
"book dealer Bundaiken Uhei...another almost analogous
edition of the same map, also dated 1710, but published by
Chobei Nagata in Kyoto is reproduced in Beans List, 1951..."
Deborah Rudolph: IMPRESSIONS OF THE EAST: p.92., illustrated
as NANZENBUSHU BANKOKU SHOKA NO ZU, 1710.
KOBE CITY MUSEUM. [KOBE SHI RITSU HAKUBUTSU KAN.]: AKIOKA KO
CHIZU KOLEKUSHYON MEI HIN TEN: EXHIBITION OF THE AKIOKA:
COLLECTION OF FAMOUS OLD MAPS: plate number 2, page 45.
BRITISH MUSEUM; maps 5.d.11 for another example.
[JONES, Yolande]. et al. CHINESE & JAPANESE MAPS: An
Exhibition Organised by the British Library at the British
Museum 1 February-31 December 1974, item J3,
FRENCH, Calvin L.: THROUGH CLOSED DOORS: Westerm Influence
on Japanese Art 1636-1853 figure 3, p.11.
Not in L. Roberts: A DICTIONARY OF JAPANESE ARTISTS.
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