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  • Japanese: 深川 (fukagawa)

Fukagawa is a neighborhood of Tokyo, which was home to a prominent unlicensed prostitution district during the Edo period. In addition to prostitution, the area was known particularly for its haori geisha, also known as tatsumi geisha, geisha who dressed in a masculine mode,[1] and may have been the site of the emergence of the first female geisha in Edo (as geisha was originally a male profession).[2]

By 1780, the Fukagawa district contained seven unlicensed areas within it.[1]

In 1871, the brothels of the Fukagawa and Shin-Shimabara districts were obliged to relocate to the Yoshiwara.

The geisha houses & brothels did not occupy all of Fukagawa, however. The neighborhood was also home to a kakae-yashiki (secondary daimyô mansion) of the Kaga domain,[3] and to a number of Buddhist temples; notable figures including Mamiya Rinzô and Iwai Hanshirô VI are buried in the neighborhood.[4]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Joshua Mostow, "Wakashu as a Third Gender and Gender Ambiguity through the Edo Period," in Mostow and Asato Ikeda (eds.), A Third Gender, Royal Ontario Museum (2016), 36.
  2. "Tongue in Cheek: Erotic Art in 19th-Century Japan," Honolulu Museum of Art, exhibition website, accessed 1 Dec 2014.
  3. Gallery labels, "Upper, Middle, and Lower Residences of Kaga Domain," National Museum of Japanese History.[1]
  4. Plaques on-site at Mamiya's grave, 2-7-8 Hirano, Kôtô-ku, Tokyo.[2]; "Iwai Hanshirô VI." Kabuki21.com.