Muromachi period, first half of 15th century
Handscroll fragment, mounted as hanging scroll; ink and color on paper
25.2 x 45.7 cm (9 7/8 x 18 in.)
Ariwara Narihira: head of Chamberlain’s Office in 847; Junior fourth rank lower; Imperial Guard with the rank of lieutenant general in 877; grandson of Emperor Heijō, fifth son of Prince Abo; head of Judiciary Office; mother, Princess Izu; died in 880, aged 56; served under Emperors Ninmei, Montoku, Seiwa, Yōzei.
If this world had never known the ephemeral charm of cherry blossoms, / then our hearts in spring / might match nature’s deep tranquility.