Hiratsuka: Nawate Road


Utagawa Hiroshige ( Japanese, 1797 - 1858 )

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General Description

Speeding down the winding Nawate Road in this scene is a courier, or hikyaku (flying legs). Working in relays, these Tōkaidō couriers were able to cover the entire distance between Edo (now Tōkyō ) and Kyōto in as little as three or four days, providing an important link between the two cities. The system continued to Ōsaka as well.

Adapted from

Anna McFarland, Ichiryusai Hiroshige: The Fifty-Three Stages of the Tokaido, Label text, 1986.