Military Epic about the Life of Yoshitsune


Gikei ki tells a fictional story based on the life of Minamoto Yoshitsune, a famous military commander of the 12th century. In the book, Yoshitsune’s elder brother Minamoto Yoritomo, the first shogun in the history of Japan, becomes suspicious of his younger brother’s ambition after his glorious victories in a series of battles. By order of Yoritomo, Yoshitsune is expelled from Kyoto, hounded, and finally forced to commit suicide. The tragic story of Yoshitsune has long been popular in Japan and was often described in novels and dramas going back to the Muromachi period (1336−1573). This book was published in 1635, after the old movable-type edition. It contains 66 illustrations, which are hand colored in red, green, and yellow.

Last updated: February 26, 2014