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Dragons

Posted by havealittletalk on November 13, 2010

Here’s a variety of dragons, all culled from the Library of Congress’s vast storehouse.

This first is such an odd thing. This woodcut (1472) by Roberto Valturio is described as depicting a mobile tank-like fortress in the shape of a dragon. [Mobile tank-like fortress in the shape of a dragon]

LC-USZ62-110292

Next up, another woodcut,  is  based on Revelation of John: (12:3-12:7) Michael and his angels fighting a seven-headed dragon, and (13:1-13:2) Saint John seeing a similar seven-headed beast that looked like a leopard rising out of the sea.  It was published in Apocalypsis Sancti Johannis [Germany, ca. 1470].

[From the Revelation of John: (12:3-12:7) Michael and his angels fighting a seven-headed dragon, and (13:1-13:2) Saint John seeing a similar seven-headed beast that looked like a leopard rising out of the sea]

LC-USZ62-110334

St. Michael seems to be having to work at vanquishing his dragon, but his angelic comrade on the upper right appears to be enjoying the battle in this woodcut by Albrecht Dürer, ca. 1511.

[St. Michael fighting the dragon]

LC-DIG-ppmsca-06618

This British World War I poster from 1915 makes use of the legend of St. George and the Dragon:

Britain needs you at once

LC-USZC4-11248 

But intriguingly, so does this one, Unser Kaiser an sein Volk  by Edward Kaempster.  Under the heading “Our Emperor to his people” ” is a proclamation issued by Kaiser Wilhelm II on July 31, 1914, concerning the advent of war, the coming struggle, and the need to pray for God’s help for the soldiers. Poster was issued for the benefit of the Red Cross.”

Unser Kaiser an sein Volk

 LC-USZC4-11627

These Japanese men are not stabbing the dragon, they are holding him up with sticks for the dragon dance.

Tojin ja-odori no zu

Tojin ja-odori no zu [Chinese dragon dance]. Between 1850 and 1900. LC-USZC4-10363

Another Japanese woodcut, this one, Tobae mitate ryūgen sennin [Toba-e correspondence of a Chinese sage], by Toyohiro Utagawa is thought to be from between 1804 and 1818. It “shows a man smoking a cigarette in a long holder, and a dragon ascending in a plume of smoke coming from a box on the ground next to him; a child(?) gestures toward the dragon.” Tobae mitate ryūgen sennin

LC-DIG-jpd-00052

Fuji [mori]goe no ryū

Fuji [mori]goe no ryū [Dragon rising over Mount Fuji]. Between 1890 and 1920. LC-DIG-jpd-01939

 

Here’s a dragon spitting water, not fire, photographed by Arnold Genthe for Travel Views of  Japan and Korea (1908).

Travel views of Japan and Korea

LC-G397-T01-0214

 

This print “shows a woman playing a koto with a dragon curled around her.”

 Ryū ko niban

Ryū ko niban [Tiger and dragon] by Gogaku Yajima [between 1818 and 1830].  LC-DIG-jpd-00088 

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One Response to “Dragons”

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