Japanese warrior woman with naginata
Japanese warrior woman with a large Naginata. A naginata is a pole weapon that was traditionally used in Japan by members of the samurai class. It consists of a wood shaft with a curved blade on the end, similar to the Chinese Guan Dao or European glaive or Russian sovnya. Usually it also had a sword-like guard (tsuba) between the blade and shaft as depicted on this card. During the Edo Period, as the naginata became less useful for men on the battlefield, and became a symbol of the social status of women of the samurai class. A functional naginata was often a traditional part of a samurai daughter's dowry. Women of the samurai class were expected to be capable of defending their homes while their husbands were away at war!
© Mary Evans / Grenville Collins Postcard Collection
Summer-like moon. Print shows General Akashi Gidayu, wearing white outfit, sitting on the floor, holding a knife (tanto or short sword) in his right hand, with papers in front of him on which he has written his death poem (also visible in upper right), scene with a tiger painted on the screen to his right; he is preparing to commit ritual suicide (seppuku) after failing to win in battle. Date 188-
© Mary Evans / Library of Congress
Prince George having a tattoo, Japan 1881
"Everybody, it seemed, tattooed, whether belonging to the ward-room, gun-room, or lower deck, including, of course, both the Princes. A dragon in blue and red writing down the arm being a favourite design." Young Prince George(1865-1936) later became George Duke of York, then King George. This picture featured in an article at the time of his marriage to Princess May of Teck(later the Duchess of York, then Queen Mary). Date: 1881
© Illustrated London News Ltd/Mary Evans