Label Text: The strategic port of Lushunkou (today called Dalin), Ryojun in Japanese, and Port Arthur in Western languages, is the northernmost port in China that is ice-free all year round. It is surrounded by the sea on three sides, and controls the northern part of the Yellow Sea. Although the Japanese directed the majority of their forces, led by Field Marshal Ōyama Iwao (1842-1916) toward Port Arthur, only token resistance was encountered. On November 21st, after less than a day of fighting, Port Arthur, the most coveted city during the war, fell. An in-discriminatory massacre of Chinese soldiers and civilians followed, in retribution for the killing of Japanese soldiers captured by the Chinese in Pyongyang and throughout the war. It is estimated that 4000 Chinese soldiers were killed, along with countless civilians, while 29 Japanese died and 233 were wounded. Western press quickly reported the massacre, creating a bad impression of Japan, and ultimately forcing Japan to return Port Arthur to China after the peace treaty. Quickly after the Japanese retreat in 1895, the Russian Empire leased the territory from China, and a long and bloody siege followed in the Russo-Japanese war of 1904-05.
Rights: Metropolitan Museum and Art Center Collection, Anonymous gift
Medium: Tryptich woodblock print, ink and colors on paper