Leaving Edo : 日本橋 Nihonbashi


Ando Hiroshige, Late 1830s , chuban yokoye published by Sanoki-Kyoka edition

The Nihonbashi district was a major mercantile center during the Edo period: its early development is largely credited to the Mitsui family, who based their wholesaling business in Nihonbashi and developed Japan’s first department store, Mitsukoshi, there. The Edo-era fish market formerly in Nihonbashi was the predecessor of today’s Tsukiji fish market. In later years, Nihonbashi emerged as Tokyo’s (and Japan’s) predominant financial district.

The Nihonbashi bridge first became famous during the 17th century, when it was the eastern terminus of the Nakasendō and the Tōkaidō, roads which ran between Edo and Kyoto. During this time, it was known as Edobashi, or “Edo Bridge.” In the Meiji era, the wooden bridge was replaced by a larger stone bridge, which still stands today.

*more about Nihonbashi in present times


Ando Hiroshige, „Daimyō Procession Setting Out“ (gyōretsu furidashi, 行列振出) , Hoeido edition

“When Take-no-Uchi Hoeido acquired the sole rights, the block was recut to show an assorted crowd which included fish peddlers at the foot of the bridge and the dogs or puppies in the center with some children near them.”


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