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Gangikozō

Gangikozō

Gangikozō Gangikozō (岸涯小僧 – River Terrace Boy) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is said to catch fish by the river side. Eating them with teeth as sharp as rasps. A lot of wordplay is used in the name of this creature. gangi-yasuri is[...]

Kosamebō

Kosamebō

Kosamebō Kosamebō (小雨坊 – Drizzle Monk) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is said to live on Mount Ōmine and Mount Katsuragi and can be found begging for alms on nights with gentle rain.1 External Links View the book online here: Konjaku Hyakki Shūi Online.[...]

Ameonna

Ameonna

Ameonna Ameonna (雨女 – Rain Woman) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. Toriyama Sekien alludes in his portrayal of this woman that she is some form of rain spirit with the description alongside the creature stating: ‘I shall appear as a cloud to you in the[...]

Otogi Bōko

Otogi Bōko

Otogi Bōko The Otogi Bōko (御伽ばうこ – Hand Puppet Tales1) was a piece of kana-zōshi literature published in 1666 by Asai Ryōi. The book consists of 68 tales of which 21 were adapted from the Chinese novel, Jiangdeng xinhua.2 The books contains the first reference to the yōkai known as[...]

Aoandō

Aoandō

Aoandō Aoandō (青行燈 – The Blue Lantern) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is said to appear when the shadows flare as the last candle goes out and the room becomes plunged into darkness. Toriyama Sekien in his depiction of the creature mentions[...]

Minobi

Minobi

Minobi Minobi (蓑火 – Raincoat Fire) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi, also known as mino-mushi. This was a phenomenon in folklore which stated mino raincoats would at times spark during the rain. The only way to stop this was to remove the mino, but[...]

Kazenbō

Kazenbō

Kazenbō Kazenbō (火前坊 – Bonze Before the Fire) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is said to rise form the bones of those interred on Mount Toribe when smoke rises over the mountain. This site was also the area where Buddhist monks practised[...]

Oboro-guruma

Oboro-guruma

Oboro-guruma Oboro-guruma (朧車 – Gloom Cart) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. It is depicted as a travelling cart with a giant face. In essence it is not truly a creature, but a manefestation of the grudges of those who would try to find the best[...]

Momiji-gari

Momiji-gari

Momiji-gari Momiji-gari (紅葉狩 – Momiji Hunting) is a depiction of a woman with a connection to a particular demoness in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. In this depiction she is shown in a mountain, holding a long-handled sake pot. This particular creature relates to the Demoness known as Kijo (a possible[...]

Hanatari

Hanatari

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: – Family: – Birth: – Death: – Hanatari Hanatari was a part of the Kumaso Clan residing on the island of Tsukushi mentioned in the nihongi during the reign of Emperor Keikō. When the Emperor comes to Tsukushi to defeat the rebelling Kumaso, a chieftain by[...]

Kunimaro

Kunimaro

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: – Family: – Birth: – Death: – Kunimaro Kunimaro was a member of the Kumaso Clan/Tsuchigumo which dwelt on the island of Tsukushi and we see him mentioned in the nihongi during the reign of Emperor Keikō. A female Chieftain called Hayatsuhime reveals to the Emperor that[...]

Yata

Yata

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: – Family: – Birth: – Death: – Yata Yata was a member of the Kumaso Clan/Tsuchigumo which dwelt on the island of Tsukushi and we see him mentioned in the nihongi during the reign of Emperor Keikō. A female Chieftain called Hayatsuhime reveals to the Emperor that[...]

Uchizaru

Uchizaru

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: – Family: – Birth: – Death: – Uchizaru Uchizaru was a member of the Kumaso Clan/Tsuchigumo which dwelt on the island of Tsukushi and we see him mentioned in the nihongi during the reign of Emperor Keikō. A female Chieftain called Hayatsuhime reveals to the Emperor[...]

Shira

Shira

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: – Family: – Birth: – Death: – Shira Shira was a member of the Kumaso Clan/Tsuchigumo which dwelt on the island of Tsukushi and we see him mentioned in the nihongi during the reign of Emperor Keikō. A female Chieftain called Hayatsuhime reveals to the Emperor[...]

Awo

Awo

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: – Family: – Birth: – Death: – Awo Awo was a member of the Kumaso Clan/Tsuchigumo which dwelt on the island of Tsukushi and we see him mentioned in the nihongi during the reign of Emperor Keikō. A female Chieftain called Hayatsuhime reveals to the Emperor[...]

Hayatsuhime

Hayatsuhime

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: Chieftain Family: – Birth: – Death: – Hayatsuhime Hayatsuhime was a part of the Kumaso Clan residing on the island of Tsukushi mentioned in the nihongi during the reign of Emperor Keikō. She reveals that there are Tsuchigumo by the names of Awo and Shira living[...]

Kumaso Rebellions

Kumaso Rebellions

For all battles on the site see: List of Battles. Kumaso Rebellions The Kumaso Rebellions relate to the times in which the Kumaso People, who were based in Tsukushi, rebelled against the Imperial Rule of Japan. Rebellion stopped by Emperor Keiko In the 12th Year, Autumn, 7th Month of Emperor[...]

Longevity

Longevity

Longevity Longevity (Chosei Furo – 長生不老) is one of many Japanese folktales, this one centered around a man known as Sentarō. Synopsis This tale has also been given the name of The Man who did not wish to die and goes as follow. There was a man called Sentarō and[...]

How an Old Man Lost is Wen

How an Old Man Lost is Wen

How an Old Man Lost his Wen How an Old Man Lost his Wen, known in Japanese as Kobutori Jiisan (こぶ取り爺) is one of many Japanese folktales. Synopsis There was an old man who had a lump (wen) growing out of his cheek and after seeking out many doctors and medicine none[...]

Rashōmon no oni

Rashōmon no oni

Rashōmon no oni Rashōmon no oni (羅城門の鬼 or 羅生門の鬼) was an oni said to have dwelt in the Rashōmon Gate of Heian-kyō. He is said to have been taller than the Gate, with hairy arms, eyes that flash like mirrors and flames which shot out of its mouth. The only salvation for[...]

The Monkey and the Crab

The Monkey and the Crab

The Monkey and the Crab The Monkey and the Crab (さるかに合戦 saru kani gassen) is one of many Japanese folktales. Synopsis One day a monkey and a crab were playing on the beach. The crab found a rice-dumpling and the monkey a persimmon-seed. The monkey did not want the seed, but[...]

The Clever Boar and Monkey

The Clever Boar and Monkey

The Clever Boar and Monkey The Clever Boar and Monkey (賢い猿と猪) is one of Japan’s many folktales. Synopsis In the province in Shinshin there was a man who travelled around making a living by taking a monkey and around and making it do tricks. One day he returns home angry, saying[...]

The Oni of Adachigahara

The Oni of Adachigahara

The Oni of Adachigahara The Oni of Adachigahara is one of many Japanese folktales, this one centering around an evil oni. Synopsis In Mutsu there was said to be oni who took the form of an old woman. People would go missing in the area and it was thought she was[...]

Kintarō

Kintarō

Kintarō Kintarō (金太郎) is a Japanese folktale centered around the life of a boy with the same name as the story. There are several versions of this tale and as we come across more of them we will add them to the website. Synopsis There was a man called Kintoki who[...]

Hanasaka Jiji

Hanasaka Jiji

Hanasaka Jiji Hanasaka Jiji (花咲か爺) also called Hanasaka Jiisan (花咲か爺さん) is a folktale of Japan centred around a man who can make trees bloom. It has been translated into english as ‘The Story of the Old Man who made Withered Trees to Flower.’ There are many verisons of the tale (and[...]

Enenra

Enenra

Enenra Enenra (烟々羅 – Smokenet) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature was the smoke cast from fire to repel mosquitos away from the house of a poor man. The ‘En’ uses the kanji for smoke, with ‘Ra’ using the an archaic term for[...]

Kerakeraonna

Kerakeraonna

Kerakeraonna Kerakeraonna (倩兮女 – Cackling Woman) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. She is depicted as some kind of giantess who is seen cackling over a wall. It appears that Sekien has merged two concepts together in the portrayal of this creature. A huge character[...]

Kageonna

Kageonna

Kageonna Kageonna (影女 – Shadow Woman) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This particular creature is the shadow of a woman which is cast on the shoji doors in haunted houses.1 External Links View the book online here: Konjaku Hyakki Shūi Online. Footnotes 1. Yoda,[...]

Jakotsubaba

Jakotsubaba

Jakotsubaba Jakotsubaba (蛇骨婆 – Snakebone Hag) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. The story concerning this creature related by Toriyama Sekien says that perhaps it comes from northern China as there are people there who bear a blue snake in their right hand and a[...]

Oshiroibaba

Oshiroibaba

Oshiroibaba Oshiroibaba (白粉婆 – Face Powder Hag) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is said to be the handmaiden of the kami for beni and oshiroi (lipstick and facepowder) by the name of Jifun-senjō. In his depiction of this creature Sekien partly quotes[...]

Kokuribaba

Kokuribaba

Kokuribaba Kokuribaba (古庫裏婆 – Hag in the House) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is said to have been the wife of a head priest from several generations ago. Now she spends her time stealing the money and offerings made to the temple and[...]

Dorotabō

Dorotabō

Dorotabō Dorotabō (泥田坊 – Mudman) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is described as a dark figure with three fingers (like an Oni) and only one eye who resides in one particular rice paddy. He is also heard to say the phrase “ta kaese![...]

Tōdaiki

Tōdaiki

Tōdaiki Tōdaiki (灯台鬼 – Candle Stick Demon) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This tale can be found in the Wakan Sansai Zue. This creature was made after Minister Karu (軽大臣) was sent to China as an envoy. Once he was there he was poisoned by[...]

Dōjōji no kane

Dōjōji no kane

Dōjōji no kane Dōjōji no kane (道成寺鐘 – The Bell of Dōjōji) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. The story behind this creature relates to the priest Anchin and his love Kiyohime. Kiyohime was the daughter of a wealthy merchant family and that her and[...]

Tengu tsubute

Tengu tsubute

Tengu tsubute Tengu tsubute (天狗礫 – Tengu Gravel) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. Sekien states that ‘when the wind blows through mountains and valleys the valleys respond by loosing boulders.’1 External Links View the book online here: Konjaku Hyakki Shūi Online. Footnotes 1. Yoda, H.[...]

Hōkō

Hōkō

Hōkō Hōkō (彭侯 – Penghou) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is the spirit of a 1000 year old tree said to take the form of a black dog with no tail. Sekien in his information here is quoting a 4th century Chinese[...]

Hangonkō

Hangonkō

Hangonkō Hangonkō (返魂香 – Soul-returning Incense) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This particular creature is a type of fictious incense that can conjur images of the dead in its smoke. The story related by Toriyama Sekien and this creature is that of the Chinese[...]

Ningyo

Ningyo

Ningyo Ningyo (人魚 – Mermaid) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This particular creature is made up of a human face and fish body with no legs. From the chest up it resembles a human, and below that resembles a fish. It is said to[...]

Ninmenju

Ninmenju

Ninmenju Ninmenju (人面樹 – Human-faced tree) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is said to live in valleys and take the form of human heads growing on a tree. They do not speak but laugh constantly, their laughter causing them to fall from[...]

Shokuin

Shokuin

Shokuin Shokuin (燭陰 – Torch Shadow) is a type of yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. This creature is a dragon with a human face, a body that is 1000 leagues long and is scarlet in colour. When he closes his eyes there is darkness, and when he opens[...]

Shinkirō

Shinkirō

Shinkirō Shinkirō (蜃気楼 – Mirage) is a type of mirage yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Hyakki Shūi. The creature itself is a type of giant clam capable of creating illusions out in the ocean. The mirage in question it creates is that of the city of Horai a fabled land[...]

Konjaku Hyakki Shūi

Konjaku Hyakki Shūi

Konjaku Hyakki Shūi Konjaku Hyakki Shūi (今昔百鬼拾遺 – More of the Demon Horde from Past and Present) is a compendium of Yōkai, demons and ghosts compiled by Toriyama Sekien, published in 1780/81. The books were inspired by the 10th Century Demon Horde’s Night Parade. These books, alongside the previous book, the Gazu Hyakki Yagyō, Konjaku Gazu Zoku[...]

Toyokiiribiko

Toyokiiribiko

Period: Legendary Period Occupation: Princes Family: Emperor Sujin (father) Tohotsunoayumemekuhashi (mother) Toyosukiiribime (sister) Birth: – Death: – Toyokiiribiko Toyokiiribiko (豊城入彦命) was the son of Emperor Sujin and Tohotsunoayumemekuhashi.123 He is said to be the ancestor of the Kamitsuke no kimi and Shimotsuke no kimi.123 In the 48th year of his father reign,[...]

Dragons

Dragons

Dragons Currently this page will aim to serve as a place to gather the different Dragons on the website. Further down the line we will change this page to include the imagery and culture behind them in Japan. Currently we have the following Dragons listed on the site: Yamato no[...]

Kibi Province

Kibi Province

See also: Provinces Kibi Province Kibi Province (吉備国) was one of the many provinces in Japan. Legendary Period According to one tale in the Nihongi, Susano-o killed the dragon Yamata no Orochi using the blade Orochi no Karasabi. This sword was eventually given into the care of the Kambe of[...]

Aki Province

Aki Province

See also: Provinces Aki Province Aki Province (安藝國/安芸国) was one of the many provinces in Japan. Legendary Period According to one version of events in the Nihongi, the kami Susano-o comes to the River Ye, in Aki Province. Here he meets Ashi-nadzu-te-nadzu and his wife Inada no Miya-nushi Susa no[...]

Dōmeki

Dōmeki

Dōmeki The Dōmeki (百目鬼) is a type of japanese Yōkai known to have had one hundred eyes on each arm. Fujiwara Hidesato is said to have fought against this creature. This particular creature may have inspired Toriyama Sekien‘s Dodomeki.1 Footnotes 1. Yoda, H. and Alt, M. (2016) “Japandemonium: Illustrated: The[...]

Hinode

Hinode

Hinode Hinode (日の出 – Sunrise) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. This is not strictly a yōkai but is instead the act of the sun rising every day. Sekien notes that the night time is when the horde will run wild, but[...]

Amanozako

Amanozako

Amanozako Amanozako (天逆毎 – Heaven Opposes All) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. She was born from Susano-o after his chest filled with rage and he expelled it. And she herself had a child through virgin birth called Amanosaku. Her appearance[...]

Kanedama

Kanedama

Kanedama Kanedama (金霊 – Gold Spirit) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. Sekien notes it is the essence of the metal element and that “[austere people] can sense gold and silver in the night.” He depicts the creature as gold koban[...]

Momonjii

Momonjii

Momonjii Momonjii (百々爺 – Old Man Momo) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. Sekien muses that the creation of its name was from the combination of two other yōkai. The Nobusama, which is also known as momonga, and the Gagoji. When a[...]

Ōkubi

Ōkubi

Ōkubi Ōkubi (大首 – Giant Head) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien.  It is a giant head, with Sekien noting that anything in excess is scary, including the head of a woman with a caked black mouth. This creature may also[...]

Ōkaburo

Ōkaburo

Ōkaburo Ōkaburo (大禿 – Great Kaburo) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien.  Annotations alongside the Yōkai says that there was an immortal called Hōso who was some 700 years old and who called himself Yū-Jidō (Chrysanthemum Boy). Is this then what[...]

Tenjō-Kudari

Tenjō-Kudari

Tenjō-Kudari Tenjō-Kudari (天井下 – Ceiling Dropper) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. He states that this creature, who drops from the ceiling is no beauty. Extra notations alongside this creature talk of another creature who broke through a roof; this being[...]

Gaikotsu

Gaikotsu

Gaikotsu Gaikotsu (骸骨) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. He is a skeletal being, with Sekien depicting him coming out of some form of pot. Sekien includes annotations alongside the creature mentioning a poem by Keiun which reads: “Look within! What[...]

Buruburu

Buruburu

Buruburu Buruburu (震々) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien, with Sekien depicting the creature rising from a hole in the ground caused by a purposely up-rooted tree. Notes by Sekien alongside this creature say it is also known as Zozo-gami, the Kami[...]

Wani (Creature)

Wani (Creature)

This page refers to the creature known as the Wani, for the person see: Wan’i Wani The Wani is a supernatural creature mentioned a few times in Japanese texts. One reference can be found in the Nihongi where it says the kami Kotoshironushi turned into a Wani before coming together[...]

Gensuke

Gensuke

Gensuke Gensuke was a victim to the practise of Hitobashira in 1608. This event occured at the Matsue Ohashi Bridge. Attempts were being made to construct a bridge over the Ohashi river here, however, the pillars kept being washed away. A sacrifice was chosen (this being the next soul to[...]

Wamyō Ruijushō

Wamyō Ruijushō

The Wamyō Ruijushō (倭名類聚抄) is a piece of Japanese Literature compiled around 934 by Minamoto no Shitagō at the behest of Princess Noriko.1 It is also known as the Shitago ga wamyō.2 Background Wamyō Ruijushō This piece is the oldest Chinese-Japanese dictionary we have,1 with both a 10 and 20[...]

Dodomeki

Dodomeki

Dodomeki Dodomeki (Hundred Eyed demon – 百々目鬼) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. The origins for this creature are said to be found in a text known as the Kankan-gaishi which states a women born with long arms always stole people[...]

Hihi

Hihi

Hihi Hihi (比々) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien and various other literature. The creature is described as a beast from the mountains who preys on fierce animals. The depiction by Sekien shows the creature killing a wild boar.1 Other Depictions[...]

Tsuchigumo

Tsuchigumo

    Tsuchigumo Tsuchigumo (土蜘蛛) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien and various other literature such as the Bakemono no e. The creature is an oversized spider type of creature. Yōkai Connections It is said Minamoto no Yorimitsu killed one of[...]

Shasekishū

Shasekishū

Shasekishū The Shasekishū (沙石集 – Sand and Pebbles) is a collection of Buddhist parables dating to 1283. The book talks of the Yokai known as the Nozuchi stating: …[its] body is large, and they say it has neither hands, nose, eyes, nor feet. They say it has only a mouth,[...]

Nozuchi

Nozuchi

For the Shinto spirit of the same name see: Nozuchi (Shinto) Nozuchi Nozuchi (野槌) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. It is said be a spirit of flora and greenery. Another reference to the creature in the Shasekishū from 1238 says[...]

Nobusama

Nobusama

  Nobusama Nobusama (野衾) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. It resembles a bat which is covered in fur with short limbs and long claws. The creature is said to eat nuts and fire, and is the supernatural equvalent of the[...]

Ama no Hayekiri

Ama no Hayekiri

Ama no Hayekiri / Orochi no Karasabi / Orochi no Aramasa Ama no Hayekiri, Orochi no Karasabi and Orochi no Aramasa are the names of swords used by Susano-o to kill the Dragon Yamata no Orochi. The name changes as within the nihongi there are several alternative versions of the same[...]

Kotoshironushi

Kotoshironushi

Affiliation: Shinto Kami of: Family: Mizokuhi (wife) Himetatara Isuzuhime (daughter) Isuzuyorihime (daughter) Kamo no Ōkimi (son) Kotoshironushi Kotoshironushi (事代主神) is a Shinto kami seen in the Nihongi as husband to Mizokuhi and father of Himetatara Isuzuhime (wife of Emperor Jimmu). It is said he was transformed into a Wani before joining[...]

Amenofuyukinu

Amenofuyukinu

Affiliation: Shinto Kami of: Clothing Family: Futemimi (mother) Yatsukamizu Omitsuno (father) Sashikuniwakahime (wife) Ōkuninushi (son) Amenofuyukinu Amenofuyukinu (天之冬衣神 – Padded Winter Robe of Heaven1) is a Shinto kami mentioned in both the Kojiki and Nihongi. In the Kojiki he is said to have been the son of Futemimi and Yatsukamizu Omitsuno.[...]

Kushinadahime

Kushinadahime

Affiliation: Shinto Kami of: – Family: Ashinadzuchi (father) Tenadzuchi (mother) Susano-o (husband) Ōkuninushi (son?) Yashimajinumi (son) Suga-no-yu-yama-nushi Mitsu-na-saro-hiko-yamaa-shino (son) Kushinadahime Kushinadahime (櫛名田比売 / 奇稲田姫 – Lady Wondrous Rice Paddies2) is a Shinto kami seen within the Kojiki and Nihongi narrative with connections to Susano-o and the Dragon Yamata no Orochi.12[...]

Tenadzuchi

Tenadzuchi

Affiliation: Shinto Kami of: Agricultural? Family: Ashinadzuchi (husband) Kushinadahime (daughter) Tenadzuchi Tenadzuchi ( 手名椎 / 手摩乳命) is a Shinto kami seen in the texts of the Kojiki and Nihongi in relation to their dealings with Yamata no Orochi. She is the wife of Ashinadzuchi and mother to Kushinadahime in both[...]

Ashinadzuchi

Ashinadzuchi

Affiliation: Shinto Kami of: Family: Tenadzuchi (wife) Kushinadahime (daughter) Ōyamatsumi (father) Ashinadzuchi Ashinadzuchi ( 足名椎 / 脚摩乳命) is a Shinto kami seen in the texts of the Kojiki and Nihongi in relation to their dealings with Yamata no Orochi. He is the husband of Tenadzuchi and father to Kushinadahime in both the Nihongi[...]

Yamata no Orochi

Yamata no Orochi

Yamata no Orochi Yamata no Orochi (ヤマタノオロチ, also 八岐大蛇 , 八俣遠呂智 or 八俣遠呂知, 大蛇) was a giant serpentine Dragon mentioned in the Shinto Mythologies in association with Susano-o. The Dragon and Susano-o can be found in old texts such as the Kojiki and Nihongi.12 The appaearance of the Dragon in[...]

Hotta Masanobu

Hotta Masanobu

Period: Edo Period Occupation: Hatamoto Family: – Birth: – Death: – Hotta Masanobu Hotta Masanobu (堀田 正信) was a hatamoto1 of Shimōsa Province.2 Within the province he ruled over the village of Kozu and heavily taxed all the residents of the Province for their rice causing almost all to be[...]

Sakura Sōgorō

Sakura Sōgorō

Period: Edo Period Occupation: Peasant Family: Wife and 4 children. Birth: Death: September 24th 1653 Sakura Sōgorō Sakura Sōgorō (佐倉 惣五郎) also known as Kiuchi Sōgorō (木内 惣五郎) was a peasant living in the village of Kozu, now close to modern day Narita.1 At the time this was in the[...]

Ryokō yōjinshū

Ryokō yōjinshū

Ryokō yōjinshū The Ryokō yōjinshū (旅行用心集) was a travel guide published in 1810, written by Yasumi Roan. Chapter themes are included below with choice examples from each one: Introduction from the author. Sixty One tips on travel. You should not reach out your hands for fruit grown in gardens at[...]

Mujina

Mujina

Mujina Mujina (貉) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien and are known to be shapeshifters like the tanuki or kitsune. One story involving this creature details how it liked to take the form of a monk and would perform devotions everyday[...]

Mōryō

Mōryō

Mōryō Mōryō (魍魎) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. The creature has many differing origins depending on the source consulted. Sekien uses the origins mentioned in the Wakan Sansai Zue which says this creature is a water kami the size of[...]

Mount Kurama

Mount Kurama

Co-ordinates: 35° 7′ 26″ N, 135° 46′ 17″ E Region: Kansai Region Prefecture: Kyoto Prefecture Height: 584 metres. Mount Kurama Mount Kurama (鞍馬山) is located towards the northern end of Kyoto and has the temple of Kuramadera upon its slopes, founded in 796AD. The mountain itself is 584 metres high[...]

Mount Atago

Mount Atago

Co-ordinates: 35° 3′ 36″ N, 135° 38′ 3″ E Region: Kansai Region Prefecture: Kyoto Prefecture Height: 940 metres. Mount Atago Mount Atago (愛宕山) makes up one of the Tamba Mountains and is located to the north-west of Kyoto. At a height of 924 metres the Atago Shrine can be found[...]

Jami

Jami

Jami Jami (邪魅 – Evil Spirit) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. The creature is described as a type of ‘chimi‘ (Mountain Spirit/kami), with Toriyama stating it is the manifestation of uncanny malevolence. The text known as the Wamyō Ruijūshō (Japanese[...]

Minamoto no Yorimasa

Minamoto no Yorimasa

  Period: Heian Period Occupation: Warrior / Poet / Monk Family: – Birth: 1104AD Death: 1180AD Minamoto no Yorimasa Minamoto no Yorimasa (源 頼政 was a poet and warrior living from 1104-80.12 As a buddhist monk he went by the name of Gensan-in Nyūdo2, but also was known as Genzanmi[...]

Itsumade

Itsumade

Itsumade Itsumade (以津真天) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. Appearance wise the creature is said to have the head of a man and body of a snake. It has a crooked bill as well as saw teeth, with long sharp spurs[...]

Nue

Nue

Nue Nue (鵺) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. This creature is said to dwell in the mountains taking the appearance of a creature with the head of a monkey, limbs of a tiger and tail of a viper, according to[...]

Ohaguro

Ohaguro

Ohaguro Ohaguro (お歯黒) was the Japanese custom of blackening your teeth. It was also known as Kane (鉄漿). Up until the 19th century it was thought to enhance sexual appeal as well as help to maintain healthy teeth. The mixture was achieved soaking iron nails in tea, sake, or various[...]

Megijima

Megijima

Megijima Megijima (女木島) is a small island within the Seto Inland Sea, north of the city of Takamatsu on Shikoku Island. Its small size only reaches 2.7km squared. The island is made famous due to its associations with the folktale of Momotaro where this island is known as Onigashima, an[...]

Momotarō

Momotarō

See also: List of Folktales Momotarō Momotarō (桃太郎 – Peach Boy) is a Folktale about a man with the same name, as well as a Dog, Monkey and Pheasant and their journey to the island of Onigashima to stop the Oni.1 There are many verisons of the tale (and will[...]

Hone onna

Hone onna

Hone onna Hone onna (骨女 – Bone Woman) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. In the tale known as the Otogi Bōko (Hand Puppet Tales) by Asai Ryōi we see this tale first appearing. The tale itself talks of a woman[...]

Kejōrō

Kejōrō

Kejōrō Kejōrō (毛倡妓 – Dangling hair) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. She is depicted as a women hiding her face with her hair all the way down passed her chin. Sekien’s depiciton here is set in the Yoshiwara pleasure quarters[...]

Aonyōbō

Aonyōbō

Aonyōbō Aonyōbō (青女房 – A lady in waiting) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. She is depicted as a creature with unshorn eyebrows and blackened teeth. it is said she slinks around watching those who are better than her. The Ao[...]

Ganbari Nyūdō

Ganbari Nyūdō

Ganbari nyūdō Ganbari nyūdō (加牟波理入道) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. It is said that you can find this type of creature in peoples toilets, but a way you can stop them from appearing is by chanting ‘Ganbari Nyūdō hototogisu‘ (Striving[...]

Hiyoribō

Hiyoribō

Hiyoribō The Hiyoribō (日和坊) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. It is said that this creature dwells in the Mountains of Changzhou in China and will never be seen during times of rainy weather. It is only when the weather is[...]

Furutsubaki no rei

Furutsubaki no rei

Furutsubaki no rei Furutsubaki no rei (古山茶の霊) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. This particular Yōkai is composed of the spirits of old camelia trees, with these spirits being said to sometimes take on a more human form as well as[...]

Funa yūrei

Funa yūrei

Funa yūrei Funa yūrei (船幽霊 or 舟幽霊) is a type of Yurei depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. The aimless spirits or ghosts are thought to represent hardship at sea. It is said that they will pull up alongside a boat and then deman ladles from[...]

Hitodama

Hitodama

Hitodama Hitodama (人魂) is a type of Yurei depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. It is represented as a kind of floating orb or fireball, which are state to be the souls of the dead. There are ways to ensure that when the supernatural apparears, your[...]

Harima Province

Harima Province

See also: Provinces Harima Province Harima Province (播磨国) is one of the many Provinces which once existed in Japan.1 It also went by the name of Banshū (播州) and is now located in the modern prefecture of Hyōgo.2 One version of the folktale known as banchō sarayashiki is set in[...]

Aoyama Tessan

Aoyama Tessan

Aoyama Tessan Aoyama Tessan was a man who has connections to the story of Banchō Sarayashiki, his role is slightly different depending on the version of the folktale. In the Harima Province version, he is a Samurai who serves the lord of the Province. Aoyama wants to be ruler instead[...]

Danshiro

Danshiro

Danshiro Danshiro was a man who has connections to the story of Banchō Sarayashiki. In the tale he is tasked with finding the person who attempted to poison the Lord of Harima Province. He finds out it is a woman called Okiku but says he will keep it a secret[...]

Banchō Sarayashiki

Banchō Sarayashiki

Banchō Sarayashiki Banchō Sarayashiki (番町皿屋敷, The Dish Mansion at Banchō) is a Japanese Folktale from 1741 involving the woman known as Okiku. There are various versions to this tale. Harima Province Version Okiku was from Harima Province, working as a maid servant for the Samurai Aoyama Tessan. Tessan wanted to[...]

Okiku

Okiku

Okiku Okiku (お菊)is a well known ghost in Japan. Known from the 1741 folktale by the name of Banchō Sarayashiki, she falls into the category of an Onryō (vengeful ghost) Harima Province Version Okiku was from Harima Province, working as a maid servant for the Samurai Aoyama Tessan. Tessan wanted[...]

Amefuri Kozō

Amefuri Kozō

Amefuri Kozō Amefuri Kozō (雨降小僧 – Rain Child) is a type of Yōkai depicted in the Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki by Toriyama Sekien. Depicted with a hat formed of an umbrella, Sekien’s notes alongside the creature tell us that this creature was the ‘houseboy’ of the Rain kami Ushi. This[...]