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Tagasago Couple in the Hollow of a Pine Tree
A new and less formal style of poetry called haikai (linked verse) spread among the urbanites of Kyoto, Osaka, and Edo in 17th-century Japan. Haikai was also very much a social activity, with linked-verse parties held on regular occasions in homes or at restaurants. Such poetic gatherings helped give rise to privately commissioned woodblock prints, called surimono (printed matter), which paired images with representative verses from the circle. Both were typically intended to carry the cachet of “insider knowledge” for a cultured and well-educated audience. Because such surimono were not ...
Pinkhus Karlinskii. Eighty-Four Years Old. Sixty-Six Years of Service. Supervisor of Chernigov Floodgate. Russian Empire
At the beginning of the 20th century, the Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944) used a special color photography process to create a visual record of the Russian Empire. Some of Prokudin-Gorskii’s photographs date from about 1905, but the bulk of his work is from between 1909 and 1915, when, with the support of Tsar Nicholas II and the Ministry of Transportation, he undertook extended trips through many different parts of the empire.
Andrei Petrov Kalganov. Former Master in the Plant. Seventy-Two Years Old, Has Worked at the Plant for Fifty-Five Years. He Was Fortunate to Present Bread and Salt to His Imperial Majesty, the Sovereign Emperor Nicholas II. Zlatoust
The subject of this dignified portrait is Andrei Kalganov, retired master at the state metal-working factory in Zlatoust, located in the northwestern part of present-day Cheliabinsk Oblast. The caption states that the 72-year-old Kalganov worked in the factory for 55 years and “had the good fortune to present the ‘bread-salt’ greeting to His Imperial Majesty Emperor Nicholas II.” Zlatoust, named in honor of Saint John Chrysostom (“Golden-Tongued,” or zlatoust), was founded in 1754 and became a center of finished metal production, including armaments. Harsh working conditions led to periodic outbreaks ...
Elderly Sart Man (Babaika, Samarkand)
This evocative winter view shows an elderly Babaika (Sart man) with a silver beard and white turban, framed by trees lined with fresh snow. The man is holding a brace of birds for a meal. The bright sunlight creates a shadow pattern throughout the photograph. In the left background is a shed wall made of mud applied to wattle latticework. (A roll of wattle is in the center.) The term “Sart” has various meanings and was used at the time to refer to town dwellers, as well as to people ...
U.S. Naval Asylum
The main building of the U.S. Naval Asylum (Biddle Hall) was designed by William Strickland (1787–1854) in 1826 and completed in 1833. Strickland was one of the first architects of the Greek Revival style in the United States and also a civil engineer. The columns on the asylum’s balconies were an innovative use of cast-iron as a building material. The U.S. Navy commissioned the building to house officers and seamen who had been disabled on duty as well as elderly and impoverished naval personnel. This print ...
This print shows an exterior view of the front of the almshouse located on the south side of Walnut Street between 3rd and 4th Streets, Philadelphia. The building was constructed in 1745 by the Religious Society of Friends, the Protestant religious sect known as the Quakers, and it was taken down in 1841. It was intended to house destitute members of the Society of Friends and also sometimes admitted poverty-stricken people of other denominations. The print is by Thomas S. Sinclair (circa 1805–81), who was born in the Orkney ...