Matsuki TANTAN (1674-1761) | Letter

974 Minagawa Kien

Matsuki Tantan (1674-1761) was a disciple of Basho and a prominent and, as some say, somewhat eccentric figure in haiku circles in Edo, Kyoto, and Osaka. He remained unmarried and without any children, "but always kept around him a great number of young girls. That is why it is so hard to obtain any specimen of his own handwriting, for he dictated everything to these children" (Arthur Waley: The Secret History of the Mongols. And Other Pieces, 1963, p. 112).

Private Letter with Poem

I inscribed an unskillful person's painting. - If one asks: "Is this a round fan?" - He answers: "No, rather an eggplant." - If one asks: "Is this a dustpan?" - He answers: "No, rather a gourd." - What is problem here? Besides, for amusement, here is a haiku...

An eye that judges good or bad
is lika a "bride for one night".
A cloud in the wind.


Ink on paper, 6 x 16 3/4 in. (scroll: 44 x 17 3/4 in.)
1,750 USD Buy this item

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2346 Matsuki Tantan

Mounting next to the letter. To see more of the mounting click here

2346 Matsuki Tantan

Top of the mounting. To see the entire mounting click here

2346 Matsuki Tantan

Detail of the letter

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