MATSUE--Historians and artists have expressed their disbelief that a masterly calligraphy work on show here was created by former Prime Minister Reijiro Wakatsuki (1866-1949) when he was just 6 years old.

The calligraphy, which will be on display at the Matsue History Museum until July 30, has never been shown to the public.

“It’s an imposing piece of work, showing Wakatsuki was highly educated from a very young age,” said Masanori Shinsho, the chief curator at the museum.

Quoted from a classical anthology of Chinese poetry, the five characters written on the wall scroll mean: “Everything in the world radiates by itself.”

It is among the hundreds of items that were donated to Matsue in 2018 by the Wakatsuki family.

The piece is one of the rare calligraphy works written by the two-time prime minister when he was a child.

It is believed to have been written in 1872 for an annual festival at the city’s Shirakata Tenmangu shrine, where local children displayed their calligraphy.

In a signed note from 1919 left on the back of the lid of the box containing the calligraphy, Wakatsuki recalled the year he created the prized work.