Sensual Encounters Involving Trains in Shunga Prints
05 september 2017 
3 min. read

Sensual Encounters Involving Trains in Shunga Prints

During the westernization of Japan, artists started to promote the modernization in their so-called “Enlightment” prints. The Japanese built their first railroad in 1872 and quickly became a symbol of innovation. Therefore there arose a large demand for “train prints”.

Trains In Shunga

Although there was a large demand you very scarcely find shunga designs including trains. This was also because shunga was at a decline at that time. Below you can find three rare examples:

train prints

´Intimate couple at a railway crossing´ (c.1900) attributed to Terazaki Kogyo (1869-1927)

Station Master

A comical scene featuring a couple making love on a railroad. The ecstatic woman is holding a railway flag. To enhance the tension the artist added an arriving train in the distance. The male is probably the station master.

train prints

´Intimate couple in a train compartment´ (c.1900) attributed to Ikeda Terukata (1883-1921)

Dark Purple

In a stylish train compartment a married couple involved in the “preliminary game” before intercourse. They are both dressed in the latest fashion. The dark purple pigment was a popular color detail among Meiji artists.

train prints: 'Intimate couple at the train station' (c.1900) attrib. to Tomioka Eisen

Intimate couple in the hallway of a train station with the insert depicting a riding train‘ (c.1900) attrib. to Tomioka Eisen

train prints: close up


Click HERE for more articles on other striking Meiji Period shunga !

About the author
Marijn is the founder of With more than 20 years of experience within the sensual and erotic art of shunga he is an authority in the genre. During this time he served many customers with complementing their art collection.


on 10 May 2019

Faces of the travelers are more distinct,also the garment details.



on 13 May 2019

Thanks Peter, you can find more on this in the following article…!!" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">">article…!!

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