Edo Sparrow (Edo Suzume)
Painted by Hishikawa Moronobu 1677 (Enpō 5) Kaga Collection 243

'The Edo Suzume (sparrows)' was the first periodical published in the Edo period. It was compiled from practical guides to famous places in Edo and in the final section it lists up all the Daimyō residences, shrines and temples, neighborhoods and bridges with the explanation that it intended to summarize the area covering approx. 12km in every direction. It forms together with the guides of Kyoto and Osaka (Namba), the 'Three Suzume'.


Many of the Edo periodicals published in the early Edo period focused more on introducing Edo as a booming town rather than serving as an exact and utilitarian geographical guide. As Edo bookshops were as yet not fully developed, most of them were published in the Kamigata (present day Osaka).
This is considered to be the earliest Edo periodical and was authored and published by Edo residents and it is also highly rated as a picture book containing illustrations by Moronobu Hishikawa who is considered to be the founder of Ukiyo-e paintings.
At the introduction, it says that practical guides to famous local places, historic sites, temples and shrines were privided for the benefit of those who came to Edo from their home regions. The city center is divided by direction and each one is depicted in great detail from Daimyō residences, shrines and temples and famous historic sites all the way to streets and houses allowing us to know how to reach there.

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