A Kosode in the Gesù of Rome

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The painting of the Church of the Gesù in Rome depicting the Great Martyrdom of 1622 in Nagasaki shows detailed representations of Japanese robes worn by Catholics who witness the execution. The present paper analyzes the depictions of kazuki garments worn by women, a type of kimono used as a cloak, to determine the familiarity of the anonymous artist with Japanese culture. During the analysis, the representations of these robes are compared with designs included in kimono pattern books and Japanese genre paintings of the period, as well as with descriptions of Japanese garments given by Europeans in the end of the sixteenth century and the beginning of the seventeenth century. This study sheds light on some issues regarding the production context and attribution of this painting, which remains unknown.