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Karaku yosu
 A rare offering, the highly important, signed first edition set, signed Yasui Senchi cho, complete in 4 volumes, as issued in the original wrappers, the sheets clean, the 97 full-sheet, 214 x 335 mm b/w woodblock prints of go positions and play with top frame author commentary in uniformly bright impressions with excellent grain and sharpness. The 2 red hanko seals on the introductory first page are well defined and clear, square characters seal at bottom, and large pictorial seal above, showing a sage sitting in the clouds. AVAILABILITY: A worldwide catalog search finds 1 institutional holding outside of Japan, an incomplete copy at the Library of Congress, volume 1 alone. SENCHI: reached 8 dan rank in 1801. 7th head of Yasui house for 34 years (1780-1814) and pre-eminent in play, he was never interested in becoming Meijin and finally stepped aside and took over his father's allied, small Sakaguchi school. No prominent players continued with his style. Now that perspective has been gained, O-Senchi is often called the father of the modern game of go with his emphasis on the center and play from the 4th and 5th lines. A century later, in the 1930's, this style came to the forefront with Go Seigen and Kitani Minoru and their highly influential New Fuseki Theory. Shotwell describes Senchi's style, "Emphasizing the center by playing on the fourth and fifth lines in the fuseki, instead of on the territory-oriented third line, and building large moyos, he was able to routinely crush opposition". FORMAT: Publisher's azure paper wrappers decorated with an embossed repeating wavelet design, the mounted cream title slips, 179 x 39 mm, printed in black with a double ruled black border, wide on the outside, volumes with 4-stab holes white string bound fukuro-toji style bindings, the crown and foot protected by beige protective paper corner caps (kadogire). SIZE: As issued. Covers: 257 x 176 mm. Text pages (within a single border): 214 x 164 mm. Print Illustrations: 214 x 335 mm. CONDITION DETAIL: Pages: Interiors of all volumes with no tears, creases or fingering pressure marks. Volumes 1 and 2: no worming, pages are crisp, fresh and clean, except for a few instances of light soil spots, 1 small sumi spot, and a neat owner annotation (1 short line) at bottom corner of volume one's rear blank, with no other owner markings in the 4 volumes set. Volumes 3 and 4: clean and crisp with worming. Worming: Vol. 3; lacy worming at side margin edge continues to sheet 5 and stops. A large worming trail toward the bottom begins at sheet 4, continuing so until sheet 10: thereafter, it is small and innocuous. Vol. 4; appreciable worming at side and bottom margin edges continues to sheet 3 and stops. A tube shape trail begins at sheet 4 at top of text frame, (not interfering with text), and continues to sheet 14: it is small and above top text frame after sheet 11: stops after sheet 14 with no worming after until last page, which has 1 top margin worm mark. Covers: some areas with light fade but the wavelet design is well defined and clear: bottom of upper wrapper side of vol. 2 with a small sumi spot: top of upper wrapper side of vol. 3 with a j-shape sumi spot, otherwise covers are clean. All-around abrasion wear, principally to edges: spine edge of vol. 3 has 2 other spots of wear. Minor wear to protective corner caps with one cap on upper wrapper side of vol. 4 loose Title Slips: Some soiling, but characters bright and clear: some soiling: one slip with a small, top corner chip, one slip with light stains, slips of vols. 3 & 4 loose at bottom. Bindings: Volumes 1-3: Excellent. Volume 4: Solid. Upper Wrapper Side: lacks threading between holes 3 & 4. Lower Wrapper Side: threading loosened. PAGINATION: Confirmed complete, 100 numbered sheets (200 pages), 3 numbered sheets of text and 97 numbered sheets of illustrations with commentary in separate top frame + 9 unnumbered sheets, 3 unnumbered sheets of text and 6 blank sheets. Text: Introduction: vol. 1, printed in black; 1 page, title and publishing information in 3 columns within a frame with 2 interlocking rings at each corner. Preface: vol. 1, 2 unnumbered sheets; 9 columns of text to a page. Concluding Text: vol. 4, 3 numbered sheets; separate pagination from preceding illustrations. Afterword: 1 unnumbered page. Illustrations: Vol. 1: 25 numbered sheets. Vol. 2: 22 numbered sheets. Vol. 3: 25 numbered sheets. Vol. 4: 25 numbered sheets. REFERENCE: Kokusho so mokuroku, v. 2, p. 246, no. 2239294. ADDITIONAL IMAGES: by request.
      [Bookseller: Steven Waldman]
Last Found On: 2013-10-14           Check availability:      Biblio    

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