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Yubinhaad

The Teiji Kojima Collection is now available

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Recently a huge collection of ozumo banzuke and other documents, which belonged to sumo scholar Teiji Kojima, went online courtesy of the Art Research Centre at Ritsumeikan University. I've only recently begun delving into it but it's clearly a tremendous resource to have so many large images of banzuke now available. Indeed, I've managed to solve a little mystery that has puzzled me for quite a while.

Looking at the banzuke for the 1940 Natsu basho, you'll see several sekitori designated as RG (欄外), short for rangai, margin. There are plenty more in the lower divisions, although they are mislabelled as haridashi in the database. These rikishi were all involved in military service as the Sino-Japanese War intensified, as a result of which they were absent from varying numbers of basho, and were set aside on the banzuke in separate boxes.

The rikishi were a mixture of oushou (応召) and nyuuei (入営) - unless I'm mistaken, the former refers to a conscripted man while the latter is one who enlisted voluntarily. Interestingly the distinction is included above each rikishi's shikona; this can be seen most clearly in the 1941 Natsu image, the third and last banzuke to feature the separate boxes. I had long wondered what those rangai designations looked like on the printed banzuke, and thanks to the Kojima collection I now know.

From left, 1940.05 / 1941.01 / 1941.05.
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Navigating the collection using the search forms can be rather hit-and-miss, and the English mode seems to be a machine translation, unlike that nice introductory post linked at the start. So far I've been browsing through banzuke using this result - clicking the thumbnail image will open that particular book of banzuke, SP01 being the earliest and SP10 the most recent.

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