commentary: 奴道中 (attendant on the road)

Hiroi Michiaki: And this is a samurai attendant. In the past, there were daimyō (military lord) processions; there was a practice called sankin kōtai [in which daimyō travelled on alternating years to do a year-long residence in Edo [Tokyo]]. For example the processions even went all the way from Sendai to Edo. And after some years they’d turn around and come back. At that time, the person in the very front of the line, the attendant, carried a spear, and while calling out something out loud he’d walk like this. [This top] shows this. The attendant on the road. At the very front of the daimyō procession.

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