Important Cultural PropertyShangshan sihao (four elderly sages on Mt. Shang), and King Wen and Lu Shang

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  • 6 two-fold screens
  • Color on silk
  • each 147.7x231.5
  • Nanbokuchō period/14th century
  • Tokyo National Museum
  • N-4

This set of paintings was originally on paper sliding-doors (shoji) on the west, north and east walls within Shariden (the relic hall) of Horyu-ji Temple just like the surrounding Shumidan (Buddhist altar) and thus it is also called "Shariden Byobu" (a folding-screen in Shariden).
As the shrine (Zushi) of Shariden was newly built in Jochi 3 (1364) and the inside of Shariden was also rebuilt then, this set of paintings is considered to have been produced about that time as well. It was removed from the walls and remounted as freestanding screens in the Edo period, which brought about a significant loss and disordering of the pictures. This set is a kind of Kangaiga (pictures providing admonition) drawing a wise man who practiced loyalty for a good king and the story is unfolded from the left to the right. Though there are many latter-day retouches, it is valuable as a relic of rare pictures on partitions in the Nanbokucho period (the Northern and Southern Courts period).