Six-fold screen depicting a military dog-chasing game

Dog chasing was a Japanese military game that was popular with the ruling warrior class. In the game samurai competitors were judged on their riding and archery skills as they aimed padded arrows at a running dog. The game was not intended to harm the dogs.

In this screen the archers wait in a circle for the dog to be released. This is the right-hand screen of a pair; the left-hand screen (now in the National Museum of Korea) would have depicted a later stage of the game. Not only samurai but also many ordinary townspeople are depicted in the audience, enjoying the lively entertainment provided by the game

Details

Further reading

Katz, Janice, Japanese Paintings in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, with an introductory essay by Oliver Impey (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2003), p. 15

Reference URL

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