Gagoze

Hear about Gagoze on Episode 34 of our Podcast, the Japan Archives.


Gagoze
Gagoze depicted in the Gazu Hyakki Yagyō.

Gagoze

The Gagoze (元興寺, also known as Gangoji) is a type of Yōkai, depicted in the Gazu Hyakki Yagyō and Hyakkai Zukan.

He is a kind of bogeyman from and is still used in Tokushima Prefecture and Awaji Shima to scare crying children into being quiet.

The Kanji used to create this creatures name uses those for the temple of Gangō-ji, in Nara City.

Origins for this Yōkai can be found in the pages of the Nihon Ryōiki where it tells of a farmer finding a ‘thunder child’ in a storm. For not killing this strange creature it tells the farmer he will soon have a strong child and shortly after he has a son who is born with a snake around his head. This child grows up to become a monk at Gango-ji temple.

Whilst the son is there, monks begun to die, always close to the bell of the temple. Being strong and brave the son goes to investigate finding that ‘the oni Gagoze’ dwells there, and so the child drags the creature from its home.1

Other Depictions

Bakemono no e

External Links

Footnotes

1. Yoda, H. and Alt, M. (2016) “Japandemonium: Illustrated: The Yokai Encyclopaedia of Toriyama Sekien.”. New York: Dover Publications, Inc.

List of Supernatural Creatures

Abura akago * Aka Manto * Akaname * Akashita * Amefuri Kozo * Amikiri * Aōbozu * Aonyobo * Aosagi no hi * Buruburu * Chochin bi * Funa Yurei * Furaribi * Furutsubaki no rei * Gaikotsu * Ganbari Nyudo * Gagoze * Gensuke * Haka no hi * Hannya * Hashi-Hime * Hiderigami * Hikeshi baba * Hitodama * Hitotsume Kozō * Hiyoribo * Hone Onna * Hyōsube * Ikiryō * Inugami * Jorōgumo * Kamaitachi * Kamikiri * Kappa * Kasha * Katawa Guruma * Kawa Akago * Kawauso * Kitsunebi * Kejoro * Kodama * Kosenjo no hi * Kurozuka * Makurageishi * Mikoshi * Nekomata * Noderabō * Nopperabo * Nuppeppō * Nurarihyon * Nureonna * Nuribotoke * Nyūnai Suzume * Obariyon * Okiku * Ōmagatoki * Oni * Onmoraki * Osakabe * Otoroshi * Ouni * Rokurokubi * Sakabashira * Samebito * Sansei * Sarakozoe * Satori * Seta * Shirachigo * Shiranui * Shōkera * Shuten-dōji * Sōgenbi * Suiko * Takaonna * Tamamo-no-mae * Tanuki * Tenasobi * Tenjō-Kudari * Tengu * Tenome * Teratsutsuki * Tesso * Tōfu Kozō * Tsurubebi * Ubagabi * Ubume * Umibozū * Umizatō * Ushinotoki-mairi * Ushioni * Uwan * Waira * Wani * Wanyudo * Yamabiko * Yamauba * Yamawarawa * Yanari * Yukionna * Zenki and Goki

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