Tokuda Magodayu Shigemori (徳田孫太夫重盛) was an excellent swordsman of the Shinto school (真刀流). He and his son had joined the group of forty-seven ronin (四十七士) who had sworn to avenge their lord’s death. Shigemori, at the time of the legendary assault on the residence of the evil Ko no Moronao (高師直), was fifty years old but in no way inferior to the younger men. His hands were supple and free of pain.
In this original woodblock print, taken from the famous series “Stories of the True Loyalty of the Faithful Samurai” (誠忠義士傳) by the artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳), we see him depicted behind a screen decorated with a bird of prey while raising his sword with both hands.
The work, produced between July and December 1847 by the publisher Ebiya Rinnosuke (海老屋林之助), owner of Kaijudo (海寿堂), shows evident signs of aging and numerous restorations on wormholes.