Chûshingura (A Treasury of Loyal Retainers), perhaps the most popular of all kabuki plays, was based on actual events. The kabuki drama was adapted from an original written about 1748 for the puppet theatre (bunraku) by Takeda Izumo with Namiki Sōsuke (Senryū) and Miyoshi Shōraku. During this portion of the Edo period, the major dramatists preferred not to write for the kabuki theater since the kabuki actors frequently departed from the texts to invent parts and aggrandize their own roles; however, Chūshingura was so successful that it was almost immediately adapted for the kabuki theater as well.

December is a popular time for performances of Chūshingura. In 1701 the shogun chose Lord Asano of the Ako domain to chaperone two representatives of the imperial household during their annual visit to Edo.

Chūshingura, classic play cycle of the Japanese kabuki theatre. In 11 acts it dramatizes the incidents that took place from 1701 to 1 Home > Chushingura > Historical Background: The Historical Incident. Because the break-in occurred in December (according to the old calendar), the story is often retold in that month. ... To the Kanadehon Chushingura contents The curtain is opened extremely slowly as a puppet, kneeling on top of a podium, ostentatiously clears its throat.

Chûshingura is the only kabuki play borrowed from jôruri that retains the prologue style, which precedes Act 1, and is used in puppet theatre.