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In the context of a C19th print of the actor Iwai Hanshirō, the publisher’s name and address is included: 長谷川丁十九バンチ 福田熊治良枚. How should the last character 枚 that comes after Hasegawachō jūku banchi Fukuda Kumajirō be understood and read? The references I have for 枚, mai, are “counter for flat objects (e.g. sheets of paper),” or bira, “bill, handbill, flier, leaflet, poster, placard.” Why is it placed directly after the name of the publisher Fukuda Kumajirō? I often see shuppanjin (出版人), where the suffix jin (人, じん) attaches to the name of the occupation, and there is also hanmoto (版元).


Edit (after Naruto's request to include an image):

enter image description here

The characters in the cartouche were not all equally clear. I have increased the contrast in Photoshop. Yes, the character is 板, not 枚.

  • Could you share the original image if you have one? After looking at a few images from "長谷川丁十九バンチ福田熊治良" available online (this, this and this), I felt this 枚 might be part of a different word that happens to be adjacent. – naruto Aug 27 '18 at 17:38
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    Hmm, I found that this publisher used 出板 instead of 出版, and that 板 was a common kanji in the publishing industry in those days. 板 makes sense as a suffix meaning "printed by ~". Are you sure you are seeing 枚, not 板? – naruto Aug 27 '18 at 17:57
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  • naruto and @droooze, I have increased the tonal contrast and uploaded the image... yes, it is my mistake, it is 板, not 枚, the line was faint. That said, the character 板 stands alone (opposed to its use in 板画 or 出板), so I am uncertain as to how it should be pronounced/read... han? The use of 板 alone is in keeping with the final print example provided by droooze. – musha Aug 28 '18 at 1:49
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The kanji is 板, not 枚. It says:

守川音治良画 = designed by 守川音治良
福田熊治良 = printed/published by 福田熊治良

板 means "board" in modern Japanese, but 板 was used like modern 版 ("print" or "publish") in the past. As for the reading, I'm not sure, but はん and ばん seem equally reasonable to me in this context.

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