The Ushioni (牛鬼 – Ox Demon) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Gazu Hyakki Yagyō and Hyakkai Zukan. Sekien depicts the creature with more of a normalized creatures body, however, older depictions have shown this creature with the head of a bull and body of a spider (like depicted in the Hyakkai Zukan below). It is known to live in water from some accounts.
Regional legends add to the story of this creature stating it to be married to the Nureonna. The story goes that the Nureonna would appear upon the coast and would hand over an infant to whomever should be passing by at the time. She would then disappear once more into the waves. This child would then gain weight until the person becomes pinned down, allowing the Ushioni to leave the waters to attack the poor passer-by who is now incapable of fleeing.1
|Hyakkai Zukan||Bakemono no e|
- View the Gazu Hyakki Yagyō online here: Gazu Hyakki Yagyō Online.
1. Yoda, H. and Alt, M. (2016) “Japandemonium: Illustrated: The Yokai Encyclopaedia of Toriyama Sekien.”. New York: Dover Publications, Inc.
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