The Tale of Genji

Tō no Chūjō Character Analysis

Tō no Chūjō is Genji's brother in law. The two are very good friends, though they're also rivals. In their youth, their rivalry is based on women, specifically Naishi. Tō no Chūjō also struggles next to Genji, as Genji is often described as being far more perfect and a more accomplished dancer, singer, and poet. As mature adults, the two engage in the art competition between the palace women, as Tō no Chūjō wants his daughter, the Kokiden girl, to marry Reizei, while Genji wants Akikonomu to marry him. Throughout the novel, Tō no Chūjō is the man who most often spends time with Genji to reminisce about the past and play music. He even visits Genji while Genji is in exile.

Tō no Chūjō Quotes in The Tale of Genji

The The Tale of Genji quotes below are all either spoken by Tō no Chūjō or refer to Tō no Chūjō. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of The Tale of Genji published in 1976.
An Autumn Excursion Quotes

To no Chujo was a handsome youth who carried himself well, but beside Genji he was like a nondescript mountain shrub beside a blossoming cherry.

Related Characters: Genji, Tō no Chūjō
Related Symbols: Cherry Blossoms
Page Number: 107
Explanation and Analysis:
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Tō no Chūjō Character Timeline in The Tale of Genji

The timeline below shows where the character Tō no Chūjō appears in The Tale of Genji. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Evening Faces
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
...the Evening Faces, though he does discover that she has some sort of connection to Tō no Chūjō , Genji's brother-in-law. Genji wonders if the lady is one of his former lovers. Koremitsu... (full context)
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
...her more easily. As their relationship progresses, Genji thinks often about whether she is indeed Tō no Chūjō 's former lover but doesn't question her. (full context)
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
The only person Genji allows to visit him is Tō no Chūjō . Genji lies that he went to his old nurse's deathbed and then became sick.... (full context)
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Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
...out and reprimand him for seeing her. Eventually, Ukon shares that the lady was indeed Tō no Chūjō 's lover, but she ran away after his family scared her. She gave birth to... (full context)
Lavender
The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
...leave. He's interrupted, however, when a group from the Minister of the Left's house, including Tō no Chūjō , arrives. They decide to stay and enjoy the cherry blossoms. They drink wine, play... (full context)
An Autumn Excursion
Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
...out, he orders a full rehearsal at the palace so that the ladies can watch. Tō no Chūjō and Genji dance "Waves of the Blue Ocean," and though Tō no Chūjō is a... (full context)
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
...Blue Ocean" moves people to tears. The other dances are boring in comparison. Genji and Tō no Chūjō are promoted, along with others. (full context)
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
...a true affair; she thinks that the rumor might help her. The rumors spread and Tō no Chūjō decides he'd also like to begin seeing Naishi. Genji doesn't know about this and one... (full context)
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Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
Tō no Chūjō believes that Genji's normal self-righteousness and sense of propriety is surely hiding something incriminating. Discovering... (full context)
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
...wholly inappropriate and sends her an admonishing poem in return. He realizes the belt is Tō no Chūjō 's, so he wraps it and returns it to him. Tō no Chūjō returns Genji's... (full context)
The Festival of the Cherry Blossoms
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
...poetry competition. Genji's voice when he announces that he drew "spring" is quite distinguished, and Tō no Chūjō does his best to sound just as distinguished when he announces his subject. Others are... (full context)
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Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
The Emperor arranges a concert as well. Genji performs part of "Spring Warbler," and Tō no Chūjō performs "Garden of Willows and Flowers." After the dances, a reader reads the courtiers' poems.... (full context)
The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
...at the cherry blossom festival, saying his music even made him want to dance. As Tō no Chūjō is in attendance, Genji insists that "Garden of Willows and Flowers" dance was far superior. (full context)
Heartvine
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Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
Genji stays in seclusion for seven weeks, though Tō no Chūjō visits often. They laugh about Naishi and cry sometimes. One evening, Tō no Chūjō finds... (full context)
The Sacred Tree
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
...that Reizei's security is the most important thing. Genji, the Minister of the Left, and Tō no Chūjō are also slighted when the promotions are announced. Tō no Chūjō and Genji spend a... (full context)
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
One summer evening, Tō no Chūjō brings a collection of Chinese poetry with him when he visits Genji. Genji pulls out... (full context)
Suma
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Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
...fix things. The two men reminisce and cry as Yugiri plays among them. Genji and Tō no Chūjō drink until late and then, Genji spends the night with one of Aoi's former serving... (full context)
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
Nature, Poetry, and Beauty Theme Icon
...he planted and thinks of the festivals going on in the city. In the city, Tō no Chūjō has achieved the rank of counselor and is doing well, but he spends most of... (full context)
Channel Buoys
Heian Court Culture Theme Icon
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
...to refuse an appointment to be a regent; both, however, must ultimately accept their roles. Tō no Chūjō is also promoted and hopes to send his twelve-year-old daughter, the Kokiden girl, to court. (full context)
A Picture Contest
The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
...time between Akikonomu and the Kokiden girl, whom he loves to play with. This worries Tō no Chūjō . Reizei begins spending more time with Akikonomu when he learns she's an artist; he... (full context)
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The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
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Catching on, Tō no Chūjō commissions painters to illustrate classic stories and installs the paintings in the Kokiden girl's apartments.... (full context)
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Tō no Chūjō decides to offer his art collection for royal review. By now, the palace is filled... (full context)
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...collecting fine art and presenting it to one's favored side. Genji makes veiled jabs at Tō no Chūjō 's secret studio, suggesting they should only offer paintings that have been in their collections... (full context)
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Finally, the final contest is arranged. The ladies' chambers are elegantly decked out and Tō no Chūjō , Genji, and other courtiers attend. Reizei asks Prince Hotaru, his uncle, to act as... (full context)
Women, Sex, and Power Theme Icon
...drunkenly that the Emperor doted on Genji, and they ask for instruments. Hotaru, Genji, and Tō no Chūjō play until morning. (full context)
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The Parent-Child Relationship Theme Icon
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...journals and Genji gives his paintings to Fujitsubo, promising to one day tell her everything. Tō no Chūjō hopes that Reizei won't forget the Kokiden girl after her loss in the art contest.... (full context)