A Russian General, Shaking with Fear, Telephones the Tsar Who is Also Being Annoyed by the Tsarina


The Russo-Japanese War (1904–5) was documented in various forms of media, such as woodblock prints, photographs, and illustrations. The victories of the Japanese military in the early stages of the war inspired propaganda prints by Japanese artists. Kobayashi Kiyochika (1847–1915) contributed this farcical single-sheet print to the series, Nihon banzai hyakusen hyakushō (Long live Japan: 100 victories, 100 laughs). Kiyochika, known for producing woodblock prints using Western painting methods, had been under the brief tutelage of Charles Wirgman (1832–91), an English cartoonist for the Illustrated London News. Kiyochika also became a full-time political cartoonist for a Japanese magazine in 1882–93. The satirical writer Honekawa Dojin (pseudonym of Nishimori Takeki, 1862–1913) supplied each illustration with an accompanying humorous description. The series mocked the Russians for their perceived military weakness, conceit, and cowardice. In this print, a Russian general, dubbed “Weakness,” talks to a figure, possibly the tsar, called “Agitation,” and worries about the fall of Nanshan and the danger of Port Arthur being taken as well. The legs of Weakness, on the right, shake with fear.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Yoshikawa town, Japan


Title in Original Language

A Russian General, Shaking with Fear, Telephones the Tsar(?) Who is Also Being Annoyed by the Tsarina(?)

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 print : woodcut, color ; 37 x 24.9 centimeters (sheet)

Last updated: March 2, 2012