several irregular lines of cursive characters; two larger, bold characters at R

Long Life, 1823

Not on Viewexpand_more

Kameda Bōsai was a scholar, artist, calligrapher, social commentator, and poet; highly respected among literati circles but regarded as non-conformist by the administration. His popularity among collectors and his fellow artists is attested to by the number of forgeries of his work in circulation. “Longevity” was written after his long-failing health suffered a sharp decline. Although he was then partially paralyzed and struggling to speak, Bōsai’s celebration of his unexpected longevity in the style of a waka (Japanese-style) poem is among the most visually lyrical of his body of work. He begins on the right with an ink-soaked brush that bleeds luxuriantly into the silk. The following verse is written in a fine, loose cursive script.

壽 わがトしにあや / かれかしとは / おこがまし / いされどもことし / 七十に
Long Life / To say that others should reach the same age would be / Quite presumptuous. / Nevertheless, this year I have become seventy-two!
(Trans. Stephen Addiss)

Long Life
Artist Life
1752 - 1826
Accession Number
Curator Approved

This record has been reviewed by our curatorial staff but may be incomplete. These records are frequently revised and enhanced. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

Does something look wrong with this image? Let us know

Zoom in on the left to the detail you'd like to save. Click 'Save detail' and wait until the image updates. Right click the image to 'save image as' or copy link, or click the image to open in a new tab.

several irregular lines of cursive characters; two larger, bold characters at R