The works of Sakubei Yamamoto
Various Social Conditions

A Popular Story in the Pit (The Attack on Pyongyang, Korea during the First Sino-Japanese War)
July 1966

Yama no Hyoban Mono (Nisshin Senso Chosen Heijo Kogeki)
[A Popular Story in the Pit (The Attack on Pyongyang, Korea during the First Sino-Japanese War)]
38.1 x 54.0 cm Painting in Watercolors and Ink

Army soldiers of Japan at that time wore black uniforms in winter and white ones in summer. This battle started on September 15, and I painted this picture without knowing which they wore during this battle.
(I did not know the climate of Korea at that time, either.) I have seen a picture showing the opening of the impregnable gate of Pyonyang Castle by Jukichi Harada in a textbook for 3rd graders at primary schools around 1900, and his clothes looked black to me in the book.
On September 15, 1894, the attack on Pyongyang, Korea started. Jukichi Harada successfully opened the impregnable Hyonmu Mun gate. He was one of the 16 soldiers of the suicide squad led by Lieutenant Shigetaro Mimura under the leadership of commanding officer, Coronel Sato of the Motoyama Task Force. His honorable distinguished service was known to the whole nation and produced a great sensation. He was thought of as the man who contributed the most to the victory in the First Sino-Japanese War.
By around 1903, his achievement was so popular that even little toddlers would often prattled, "Harada Jukichi no mon yaburi (the opening of the impregnable gate by Jukichi Harada)." But his fame did not last after the Russo-Japanese War started. (Japanese soldiers used double-edged bayonets at that time.)

Translation Assisted by Mr. Nathan Johndro

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