Street vendors selling goldfish were a common sight in Japan through the 1960s. Fascinated by their novelty and shimmering colors, Japanese first imported goldfish from China in 1502. During the Edo period (1600-1868), breeders throughout Japan greatly increased the number of goldfish, and by the early 19th century they had become affordable pets for ordinary citizens. They became a popular commodity every summer, since viewing fish swimming in glass bowls had the psychological effect of tempering the heat. This print depicts a little boy excitedly showing his mother the goldfish he has just purchased from a vendor, who watches the scene from her position at the fish tank on the right.