|KEY WORD : art history / paintings|
1 Also kanpon 刊本. A printed book of any type.
2 A printed book associated with *ukiyo-e 浮世絵 woodblock prints. Although the techniques of woodblock printmaking have been known in Japan for centuries, printing had been in Buddhist hands and most works printed before 1600 were religious texts. However the peace and economic prosperity of the Edo period brought about the production of woodblock printed books for mass consumption. From around the Keichou 慶長 (1569-1615) and Genna 元和 (1615-25) eras, bookstores began to deal in books as a business and the stores themselves became publishers. Production of printed books increased by the Kan'ei 寛永 era (1624-44) during which new types and styles appeared. One type of printed book was produced using single blocks of wood, or more rarely, ceramic tiles, which were carved as required; books made by this method are called seihanbon 整版本. The other type of woodblock printing involved carving each individual Japanese character from a smaller block of wood and then arranging them as desired before printing katsujibon 活字本. Both methods were used during the Keichou era, but after this period the majority of books were printed using single blocks of wood. Seihanbon produced prior to the Keichou era and katsujibon produced prior to the Kan'ei era are called kohanbon 古版本. Illustrations were often included in printed books, many of which were intended for public consumption, and even the Japanese classics were printed in kana 仮名 for popular use. At first, Kyoto was the principal area of publishing and one can see many reprints of Kyoto books in Edo. This was the age of the *kana zoushi 仮名草子, followed by the development of the *ukiyo zoushi 浮世草子 and the publication of books in Osaka. Books printed only in black ink are known as sumizuribon 墨摺本; those printed with colors are called irozuribon 色摺本. The irozuribon include types such as the *tanrokubon 丹録本 and edoribon ゑどり本, which were printed with black ink and then hand-colored by brush. Different types of publications produced included: imperial and government printings, private printings, and commercial printings or advertisements. Printings are also distinguished by place of origin and by size. There are, for example, kyouhan 京版, printed in Kyoto, and edoban 江戸版, published in Edo. There is the Mino book minobon 美濃本 made of folded Mino paper *minogami 美濃紙 approximately 200 x 280 mm, and the hanshi book hanshibon 半紙本, produced from sheets of *hanshi 半紙 paper typically, 165 x 235mm. There are also half size Mino books which are vertical, and a horizontal type commonly known as makurabon 枕本 (pillow book). Varieties of printed books included *aohon 青本, *akahon 赤本, *kurohon 黒本; *kibyoushi 黄表紙, all named for the color of their paper covers *hyoushi 表紙. Also included are *kokkeibon 滑稽本, *sharebon 洒落本, *ninjoubon 人情本 and *yomihon 読本, all important forms of narrative fiction.
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