This modest volume is the first edition of the first printed bibliography of early Japanese books, which remained a principal guide to the subject for five centuries. This catalogue concentrates on Japanese books only (as distinct from the Chinese classics commonly found as part of the Japanese literary canon) and is divided into two parts.
The first part consists of the text—printed here for the first time- of Honcho shojaku mokuroku (or Ninnaji shojaku mokuroku) which describes 493 Japanese books, most of which are no longer extant, divided into 20 categories (religious events, chronicles of the emperors, official events, family trees of royalty and nobility, geography, literature (poetry and prose), medicine, biographies, etc.), which represents the first attempt to categorize Japanese books by subject matter. The second part is an addendum updating the first part with newer publications. In both parts, for each book, the anonymous author (probably Heibe Nagao, the publisher) provides title, author, number of volumes, and, in many cases, a short description of contents.