- - ABC-INDEX - -

12/31/2017

Welcome !

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Welcome to O-Mamori ! お守り and Mingei 民芸 ! 

The rich world of Japanese amulets and talismans,
sold at Buddhist temples and Shinto shrine all over Japan.




The folk art and folk craft of Japan with its many folk toys (gangu 玩具)
has produced many small items to protect from illness, bring good luck and money and wish for general happiness for the family.
Introducing regional monsterlins, ghosts and demons and how people coped with them.
Introducing miniatures of figures from festivals and rituals and much more !


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. . - - - - ABC - INDEX - - - - . .

- AAA - / - BBB - / - CCC - / - DDD - / - EEE -

- FFF - / - GGG - / - HHH - / - I I I - / - JJJ -

- KK KK - / - LLL - / - MMM - / - NNN - / - OOO -

- PPP - / - QQQ - / - RRR - / - SSS - / - TTT -

- UUU - / - VVV - / - WWW - / - XYZ -


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. General Information . Essays .



. Join the Ukiyo-E friends on facebook ! .




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Amulets from Shrines and Temples
. Shinsatsu 神札 , Mamorifuda 守り札 .


How to make a wish come true . . .
. Gankake 願掛け wish-prayer, to make a wish .


Little things for good luck
. Engimono 縁起物


Folk Art and Folk Craft
. mingei 民芸 and folk craft museums

. minzokugaku 民俗学 / 民族学 folklore studies, ethnology .


Kyoodoo gangu 郷土玩具 Kyodo Gangu Folk Toys
. Regional Folk Toys from Japan .
- From Hokkaido to Okinawa -


Regional monsters and demons
. Yookai 妖怪 Yokai monsters, demons - Introduction
yuurei 幽霊 Yurei, ghost
bakemono 化け物  o-bake お化け


Furusato, home village, home town, Heimat
This is where you feel at home, where the ancestors are close by, where everything is all right. It is an emotion deep inside the Japanese soul.
. Furusato ふるさと, 故郷、古里 .


. Festivals, Ceremonies, Rituals . SAIJIKI

. Kami to Hotoke - the Deities of Japan .


. Japan - Shrines and Temples .


. WASHOKU - Regional Dishes from Japan


. Reference, Books . . . .


Your guide is

Dr. Gabi Greve
Okayama Japan

. Daruma Museum Japan .


- - - The alphabetical Daruma index: - - -
Use your browser to find a keyword.

. Contents A - C . - - - . Contents D - F .
. Contents G - J . - - - . Contents K .
. Contents L - N . - - - .Contents O - R .
. Contents S . - - -  . Contents T - Z .








. Join the MINGEI group on facebook ! .

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This BLOG is dedicated to
the brave people of Tohoku, after March 11, 2011

. Japan after the BIG earthquake March 11, 2011

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- - - - - - #omamori #mingei #folklore #folkart #legendsofjapan -
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12/30/2017

- Omamori - INFO

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quote
Omamori (御守, o-mamori)
are Japanese amulets dedicated to particular Shinto deities as well as Buddhist figures. The word mamori (守り) means protection, with omamori being the polite sonkeigo form of the word mamoru, "to protect".

Design and function

The amulet covering is usually made of cloth and encloses papers or pieces of wood or paper with prayers written on them which are supposed to bring good luck to the bearer on particular occasions, tasks or ordeals. Omamori are also used to ward off bad luck and are often spotted on bags, hung on cellphone straps, in cars, etc. for safety in travel. Many omamori are specific in design to the location they were made.

They often describe on one side the specific area of luck or protection they are intended for and have the name of the shrine or temple they were bought at on the other. Generic omamori exist, but most of them cover a single area: health, love, or studies, to name only a few. It is said that omamori should never be opened or they lose their protective capacities. Amulets are replaced once a year to ward off bad luck from the previous year. Old amulets are usually returned to the shrine or temple so they can be disposed of properly.

Modern commercial uses
There are modern commercial versions for these that are typically not spiritual in nature and are not issued by a shrine or temple. They do not confer protection or need to be replaced every year. It has become popular for stores in Japan to feature generic omamori with popular characters such as Mickey Mouse, Hello Kitty, Snoopy, Kewpie, etc.



Some popular omamori are:

Kanai Anzen: For good health and help with illness.
Kōtsū Anzen: Protection for drivers and travelers of all sorts.
En-musubi: Available for singles and couples to ensure love and marriage.
Anzan: Protection for pregnant women during term and to ensure a safe and easy delivery.
Gakugyō Jōju: for students and scholars.
Shōbai Hanjō: Success in business and matters of money.

source : WIKIPEDIA


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People go to a temple or shrine and pray or make a vow for something special.
They hope their prayers will be heared and richess, health etc. bestowed upon them.

goriyaku, go riyaku 御利益, ご利益 reward
receiving merits and benefits


Vows and prayers must be sincerely petitioned and gratitude must be shown if a wish is granted.
Otherwise there will be a divine retribution (tatari 祟り 。たたり)


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special fuda talismans, shinpu 神符
taima たいま(大麻), oonusa おおぬさ
gofu, gofuu 護符/御符




gohei 御幣(ごへい)strips of white paper on a wand
used to purify a place or person by waving over it.


nusa 幣(ぬさ)
They come in many variations, according to the shrine and deity they are used for.

quote
Gohei
A kind of ritual wand; one type of heihaku, also called heisoku. Originally gohei were identical to cloth offerings called mitegura, but the term gradually came to be used in today's more narrow sense. Gohei are made by attaching zig-zag strips of gold, silver, white or multicolored (five-color) paper to a staff (called a heigushi) made of bamboo or other wood.

Originally, offerings of cloth were presented to the kami by attaching them to a staff, and this practice forms the origin for today's customary gohei. Also, while rectangular paper was used at first, the custom later developed of attaching streamers called shide to the sides.

Originally an offering to the kami, gohei stood deep within the sanctuary and came to be viewed as a mishōtai, an object in which the spirit of the kami resided, or else were placed before the kami as a decoration similar to mirrors, or were used as implements with which to purify worshipers at the shrine.
source : Motosawa Masashi, Kokugakuin, 2005



For some festivals there is a special
. gohei no atama kazari 御幣の頭飾り headgear with gohei decoration .




In Red and White, koohaku 紅白 for extra power.


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. Shimenawa 注連縄 a sacred rope .



MORE about

. Shinsatsu 神札 , Mamorifuda 守り札 .

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Have your own O-Mamori made
Produced by 池上實相寺 ikegami jissouji
- reference : omamo.me/ -

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12/29/2017

. . . Regional Toys . . . LIST

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. Regional Daruma Dolls from Japan .


  


Regional Folk Toys - From Hokkaido to Okinawa

日本の郷土玩具 gangu
日本のおもちゃ omocha


Use "MY LABLES" on the right side to find the entries.


CLICK for more photos



This BLOG is dedicated to the brave people of Tohoku.

. Japan after the BIG earthquake March 11, 2011

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HOKKAIDO 北海道 [ 道北 道東 道央 道南 ]

. HOKKAIDO . and . AINU .

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TOHOKU 東北 [ 青森 岩手 宮城 秋田 山形 福島 ]

. AKITA .

. AOMORI .

. FUKUSHIMA .

. IWATE .

. MIYAGI .

. YAMAGATA .


DARUMA after the great earthquake of March 11, 2011

. Tohoku Daruma .


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KANTO 関東
[ 東京 神奈川 埼玉 千葉 茨城 栃木 群馬 ]

. CHIBA .

. GUNMA, GUMMA .

. IBARAKI / IBARAGI .

. KANAGAWA - Yokohama - Kamakura .

. SAITAMA .

. TOCHIGI - Nikko .

. TOKYO - Edo .


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. . . . . Chubu, Chuubu Chihoo 中部地方





SHINETSU 信越 [ 新潟 長野 ]

. NAGANO .

. NIIGATA .

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HOKURIKU 北陸 [ 富山 石川 福井 山梨 ]

. FUKUI .

. ISHIKAWA .

. TOYAMA .

. YAMANASHI .


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TOKAI 東海 [ 愛知 岐阜 静岡 ]

. AICHI - Nagoya .

. GIFU . Hida, Mino .

. SHIZUOKA .


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KINKI / KANSAI 近畿 [ 大阪 兵庫 京都 滋賀 奈良 和歌山 三重 ]

. HYOGO - Kobe, Himeji .

. KYOTO, Kyooto, Kioto .

. MIE - Ise Shrine .

. NARA .

. OSAKA .

. SHIGA .

. WAKAYAMA Kishu .


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CHUGOKU CHIHO 中国 [鳥取 島根 岡山 広島 山口 ]
Western Japan 西日本 Nishi Nihon


. HIROSHIMA .

. OKAYAMA .

. SHIMANE .

. TOTTORI .

. YAMAGUCHI .


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SHIKOKU 四国 [ 徳島 香川 愛媛 高知 ]

. EHIME .

. KAGAWA .

. KOCHI (Koochi, Tosa) .

. TOKUSHIMA - AWA .


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KYUSHU Kyuushuu 九州
[ 福岡 佐賀 長崎 熊本 大分 宮崎 鹿児島 ]

. FUKUOKA - Hakata - Kita-Kyushu .

. KAGOSHIMA (Satsuma) .

. KUMAMOTO .

. MIYAZAKI, MIYASAKI .

. NAGASAKI .

. OITA .

. SAGA .


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.OKINAWA 沖縄 . Ryukyu 琉球 .


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. WASHOKU .
Regional Dishes from Japan



. O MATSURI お祭り .
Regional Festivals from Japan



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7/08/2017

Mihara Yassa Daruman Festival

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. Hiroshima . Mihara Daruma 三原だるま - Introduction .
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Mihara Yassa Daruman やっさだるマン 

Mihara Yassa Matsuri 三原やっさ祭り Yassa Festival



quote
The Mihara Yassa Festival is held in front of Mihara Station over a three-day period each summer. This festival, in which a great many revelers enjoy dancing what is called the "Yassa Dance," has a long and storied history. It is said to have begun around the mid-16th century, when Takakage Kobayakawa, a general of the Warring States Period, constructed a castle in Mihara to gain control over the surrounding land and sea and the townspeople celebrated the construction of the castle by singing and dancing throughout the night.

Although the form of the Yassa Dance has gradually changed with the times, the custom of dancing in an unconventional way while singing "Yassa, Yassa" to the accompaniment of shamisen (three-stringed lute), drums and other musical instruments has remained the same here in Mihara. Many of Mihara's local citizens participate in the festival, which is currently held over a three-day period during the "Obon" holiday, timed to welcome the spirits of our ancestors who visit during this period.

Many teams put on Yassa Dance performances in the festival grounds while wearing happi (livery coats) or yukata (summer robes) in a scene so lively that spectators often will jump in and start dancing with them-- everyone can have fun at the Mihara Yassa Festival. With the always effervescent Yassa Dance recently recognized as a distinctive folk dance of Hiroshima Prefecture, more and more visitors are coming to watch with each passing year.

The festival grounds are also lined with street stalls and there are fireworks displays at night. This summer, why not visit Mihara and enjoy participating in this light-hearted and cheerful dance?
source : visithiroshima.net/things_to_do/seasonal_events

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- - - - - Yassa Daruman やっさだるマン

やっさだるマンが,三原市の情報や日々の出来事などを発信しています。
- reference : city.mihara.hiroshima.jp/site -















- and on facebook -




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. Regional Folk Toys from Japan .

. Japan - Shrines and Temples .


. Tohoku after the BIG earthquake March 11, 2011

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- - - #yassadaruman #miharayassa #miharayassadaruman - - - - -
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6/20/2017

Tengu kanban Kamban

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. Kanban 看板 Kamban Shop Signs - Introduction .
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kanban to tengu 天狗と看板 shop signs with Tengu goblins

. Tengupedia - 天狗ペディア - Tengu ABC-List .
- Introduction -


quote - Japan Times
Japan’s kanban’ are still hanging in there
Little information remains about the personal life of the artisan Kojiro Shimizu.
His personality and interests, his passions and motivations — all are shrouded in mystery. What we know is that he worked in Kyoto in the late 19th and early 20th century and that he appeared to be on good terms with members of the business community. He also happened to be a master carver of kanban, the traditional shop signs of Japan, and on rare occasions, when he produced a particularly elaborate piece, he marked it with his seal, perhaps succumbing to a brief moment of pride. Had he not done so, he would likely be completely unknown to us.
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Kanban could be sumptuous objects indeed. The most remarkable were carved in keyaki (Japanese zelkova) wood, valued for its rich grain and durability, and covered in lacquer. Many were enlivened with flowing calligraphy and decorated with gold leaves. Mother-of-pearl was also sometimes used to make details sparkle.
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In Edo Period Japan (1603-1868), patronage for artists and craftspeople grew to unprecedented levels, but strict sumptuary laws limited conspicuous display of opulence. Though these rules were unevenly enforced, they nevertheless imposed limits on the extravagance and glitter that merchants could use to advertise their wares. Partly as a result, savvy entrepreneurs came to rely on codes, puns and double-entendres adroitly presented on kanban in order to appeal to the sophisticated consumer classes of Japan’s largest cities.

For instance, shops purveying cards, a game disliked by the bakufu (shogunal government) because it was a gamblers’ favorite, often displayed a long-nosed tengu (goblin) on their kanban. This is because in Japanese, the name for cards, hanafuda, literally “flower cards,” can also be read as “nose cards.”
Other cases, equally playful, simply tried to elicit a smile from customers: stores selling sweets often advertised their goods using a wild horse, or ara-uma, which was a play on the term “Ara, umai!,” literally meaning, “Whoa, how sweet!”
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source : japantimes.co.jp/life/2017

hanakaruta 花かるた  鼻かるた 








. Tengu hanafuda 天狗花札 Tengu Playing Cards .



京都大石天狗堂 - 任天堂 Nintendo 1889

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てんぐわた




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. . . CLICK here for more Photos !


. Kanban 看板 Kamban Shop Signs - Introduction .

. Tengupedia - 天狗ペディア - Tengu ABC-List .


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. Join the MINGEI group on facebook ! .  



. Regional Folk Toys from Japan .

. Japan - Shrines and Temples .


. Tohoku after the BIG earthquake March 11, 2011

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[ . BACK to DARUMA MUSEUM TOP . ]
- - - #kanban #kamban #tengukamban #tengukanban - - - - -
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6/19/2017

Tottori kasuri ikat

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. Kasuri 絣 Ikat - Introduction .
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San-In-gasuri 山陰絣 San-In Kasuri - Ikat from Tottori 鳥取県



is a speciality of the San-In Area, located in the north-western part of the main Island of Honshuu.
The main production areas are in 広瀬 Hirose, 倉吉 Kurayoshi and 弓浜 Yumihama.

................................................................................ Hirose 広瀬  

Hirose-gasuri, Hirose Kasuri 広瀬絣



- quote -
島根県安来市広瀬町 Hirosemachi Nogigun, Yasugi City, Shimane Prefecture.
Characteristics:
Hand woven cotton fabric with "Kasuri" designs which look more like folk craft. One of the Three Figure Kasuri in the Sanin District. Designs are delicately woven. It was once praised as good for its large designs in comparison to the middle sized designs in "Bingo (Hiroshima Prefecture) Gasuri" and small designs in "Kurume Gasuri." Most of the designs are "Sho-Chiku-Bai"(Pine, Bamboo, Plum) and "Tsuru-Kame"(Crane,Turtle), both of which are regarded as being auspicious in Japan. The futon mat in which "Hirose Gasuri" is used was a bridal mat as well as a death mat. It was a custom for the bride to take a futon mat made with Hirose Gasuri to her bridegroom as one of the bridal items. After it was used on the wedding night the mat was carefully kept and was used again as a death bed for the same woman.
A special technique called "Makase" is used in this Kasuri weaving. The part to be left undyed is not marked with Chinese ink (as is usual in most Kasuri weaving) but it is copied onto the pattern paper.
Uses: Clothing, bedding, cushions
History:
Hirose Gasuri was originated in Hirose where a doctorユs wife started weaving it after she studied the technique of dyeing and weaving "Yumigahama Gasuri" in Yonago in the Bunsei Era(1818-30). After that, the production flourished as the feudal government protected it. In and after the Koka Era(1844-48), an official designer of the government created a large design, which became widely known as characteristic of Hirose Gasuri. Its production equaled that of "Kurume Gasuri" in the Meiji Period. In the Meiji Era starting in 1897, some changes in the loom(from low to raised looms) and the threads(from hand to machine spun) were made for mass production. However, a big fire in 1915 and the WWII damaged its production. It is being revived today by a man named Amano, who is good in the technique of Kasuri weaving.
- source : kimono.or.jp/dictionary/eng -




. Tsuru Kame 鶴亀 Crane and Turtle patterns - Introduction .



................................................................................ Kurayoshi 倉吉  

Kurayoshi-gasuri, Kurayoshi Kasuri 倉吉絣



- quote -
Characteristics:
Cotton fabric, in which thick indigo dyed threads are used for both warp and weft. Designs are mostly traditional patterns. The fabric is thick.
Uses: Clothing, bedding, cushions.
History:
The newest among the 3 types of Kasuri of Sanin (Tottori, Shimane and northern Yamaguchi Prefectures). The Kurayoshi Kasuri was first woven under the influence of "Kurume Kasuri" and "Yumigahama Gasuri" and widely traded throughout Japan in the early Meiji Period. The designs at first were woven only with the weft. Since the middle of Meiji Period complicated designs were woven in "double ikat" (dyed threads are used both for warp and weft). Farmers side jobs at first, it was mechanized and produced in large amounts in the end of the Meiji to the Taisho Periods. After the Taisho, production declined. There are signs, however, that the Kurayoshi Gasuri will be revived today.
- reference source : -




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........................................................................... Yumihama, Yumigahama 弓浜  

Yumihama-gasuri, Yumihama Kasuri 弓浜絣



- quote -
Yumihama-gasuri Textile 弓浜絣
Japan’s famous medieval warlord Hideyoshi Toyotomi was the man who ended the nationwide feudal wars and became the head of the entire nation in 1590. After his death, the Tokugawa Shogun family took over his reign and the Edo period began, lasting from 1603 to 1868. During this time, Japan enjoyed great societal stability. Furthermore, the provincial samurai lords had promoted industries and trades within their territories. It was a great time in history when many arts and crafts were born and flourished. These objects were actively traded among provinces. Both Tottori and Shimane prefectures are famous for Kasuri fabric and Yumihama-Gasuri, which is characterized by a nice contrast between white patterns and dyed indigo blue. Both of these fabrics became increasingly popular at this time.

Kasuri fabrics are made of natural cotton. Making the fabrics was an important daily job for women in the villages. They made beddings as well as clothes for all occasions. Fans, turtles, cranes, fish, chrysanthemums, treasures, etc. were favorite patterns used for Kasuri, which is loosely woven and has a natural feel. One can easily sense the love and wisdom of a woman who chooses a certain pattern to wish her loved ones good luck for a special life event. For example, a mother might choose an anchor for her young bride to safely settle down in her new sea (environment), or an eagle for her newborn child or grandchild to “fly bravely” into the future like a bird.

In the 18th century, Yumihama-Gasuri became a major industry in Tottori, thanks to the hardworking women in the farming villages. They attended cotton fields during the day, and made and wove threads at night. In fact, Yumihama-Gasuri was an important source of income for the families. There were about 54 weaving houses in 1836.

Later on, rapid industrialization made the time consuming Yumihama-Gasuri method almost obsolete, with a lack of skillful successors to keep the craft alive. However, thanks to the recent popularity of handmade objects, people began rediscovering the beauty of the mystic dancing of white and indigo colors, set on weavers that emanate love and warmth. Although production is still limited to this day, local organizations have been working to train the next generation of Yumihama-gasuri artists. They also make accessories such as bags, hats, coin purses, porches, table cloths and so on, which are more affordable, but still send you love and good wishes.

- - - - - 2-124 Higashimachi Tottori-shi Tottori-ken
- source : japan-brand.jnto.go.jp/crafts -




. The White Rabbit of Inaba 因幡の白兎 .
and Okuninushi no Mikoto (Daikoku)

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. Japanese Legends - 伝説 民話 昔話 – ABC-List .

Legends about Kasuri Ikat
Even animals like to wear it . . .

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秋田県 Akita 雄勝郡 Ogachi district

kongasuri コンガスリ / 紺絣 blue Ikat
Around 1899. Children wearind blue Ikat robes were abducted from the village. The roads were then closed over night.

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群馬県 Gunma 利根郡 Tone district みなかみ町 Minakami

kappa カッパ Water Goblin
Once a member of the 林家 Hayashi family came back after washing his horse in the river to cool it. He heard a strange sound in 馬の舟 the food box of the horse. A Kappa was there waiting for the horse to come back. The man let the Kappa run away without punishment. From that day on, every night the Kappa brought a barrel full of fish to the house.
Then one day when a Kimono with an Ikat pattern was hanging on the line to dry, the Kappa saw it and never came back.
Ikat is one of the things a Kappa dislikes. So if people want to bath in the river, they better wear a light Ikat-pattern Kimono.

. things a Kappa dislikes and fears 嫌物 .

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岩手県 Iwate 九戸郡 Kunohe district 軽米町 Karumi

zashiki warashi 座敷わらし child spook
They live in the 曲がり家 Magaria farm houses and wear robes with blue Ikat patterns. Some are boys, some are girls.
They bring good luck to the family that lives there, but they are never really seen. If people try to take a peek, the child disappears.
They are also called ザシキボッコ Zankibokko.



. zashiki warashi 座敷童子 / ざしきわらし girl spooks .
in Iwate, Tono, Tohoku / 岩手県遠野 に伝えられる精霊的な存在

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奈良県 Nara 橿原市 Kashihara

kitsune 狐 Fox
Once an old person went to the Shrine, when he saw a nice girl standing there. Her hair was made up and she wore an Ikat Kimono. She even had her teeth blackened and laughed with a strange giggle. It was in fact not a human, but a Fox.

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吉野郡 Yoshino district 十津川村 Totsukawamura

nozuchi 野槌 / tsuchinoko ツチノコ Hammerspawn
They creep up at people and kill them. Once an old man saw a very large Tsuchinoko which wore a robe wit an Ikat pattern.

. nozuchi 野槌 / tsuchinoko ツチノコ Hammerspawn .

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岡山県 Okayama 笠岡市 Kasaoka

koboozu 小坊主 a young priest
At midnight a young priest in a Kimono with Ikat pattern appeared. Even if it was night and he was far away, people could clearly see the Ikat pattern of his robe.
But coming too close, nobody was there after all.


source : blog.goo.ne.jp/mitoyawool

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滋賀県 Shiga 愛知郡 Aichi district 愛東町 Aito

tanuki たぬき Tanuki badger
Tanuki like to shape-shift in a woman wearing a Kimono with an Ikat pattern. If people turn around to have a second look at them, there is nobody to be seen.



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島根県 Tottori

At the local school a ghost was seen regularly. Below the school was a grave and in the evening a man wearing a Kimono with an Ikat pattern was seen walking around. He went up to the school and to the toilet at the back, straight into the room for the "big delivery". When people peeked inside, there was nobody to be seen, only a strange red flame.
Sometimes they even heard a sound from the toilet room.

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- reference : Nichibun Yokai Database -




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6/10/2017

Yakusugi art Kagoshima

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. Kagoshima Folk Art - 鹿児島県  - Introduction .
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yakusugi 屋久杉 cedar from Yakushima island


縄文杉 Jomon Sugi

quote
Yakusugi 屋久杉
is a Japanese cedar that grows on the mountain 500 metres above sea level. The term "Yakusugi" refers to trees that are more than 1,000 years old. Those less than 1,000 years are called "kosugi." (lit. small Japanese cedar)’. The Japanese cedars in Yakushima may also be referred to as "jisugi" (literally: "locally grown cedars")’, but this also encompasses the kosugi, and is a regional dialect.
In general,
the Japanese cedar lives for about 500 years, but Yakusugi lives much longer. Yakusugi that grows on less nutritious granite grows slowly and is grained very tightly. It contains much resin due to Yakushima's high rainfall and high humidity, making it harder to rot. As a result, these trees tend to have longer lives, and many larger trees have been around for more than 2,000 years. Famous examples include the Jōmon-sugi, Kigen-sugi and Wilson stumps, named for their discoverer.
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


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Daruma made from Yakusugi, Cedar from Yakushima





- Check this page for more items made by Yakusugi-Do : 屋久杉堂
source : yakusugido.com


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Yakusugi ningyoo 屋久杉人形 dolls from Yakushima cedar

Usually a pair, with a ring around each head.






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Yakusugi mingei kogei 屋久杉民芸 工芸品 Yakusugi handicrafts



- quote -
Yakusugi cedar is a world-heritage-designated tree that grows on Yakushima Island. The title Yakusugi only applies to trees that are more than 1,000 years old—those under 1,000 years old are called kosugi, or small cedars.

Yakushima Island has a very harsh environment, where the local saying goes that “it rains 35 days a month.” Many typhoons pass through the area as well. The island’s soil is also granite-based, with extremely low nutritional content. Yakusugi cedars that have survived under these conditions accumulate rich quantities of resin, and develop a fine-grained quality.

This precious wood is used to make Kagoshima Prefecture’s Yakusugi cedar handicrafts. However, lumbering of Yakusugi cedar has been banned since 2001, meaning all modern handicrafts are produced using deadfall and leftover stock from previous periods of history.

Yakusugi cedars were offered in the form of taxes from the Edo Period (1603-1868), and though they were lumbered in large quantities at the time, only the highest quality trees were actually transported to the mainland. The numerous leftover trees were called domai-boku, or trees buried in the soil, and they have been preserved in their natural forms for 200 years thanks to their high resin content. Further, as Yakusugi cedars grow on thin soil above granite, many are felled by typhoons and strong winds, meaning fallen branches and stumps from Yakusugi cedars can be found in great quantities.

Yakusugi cedar handicrafts represent a means of making use of these already-available resources. The resin-rich quality of the wood not only prevents decay, but as it gives off a beautiful gloss the more it’s used, it is a choice material for general woodwork as well.

With the wood’s age and its growing scarcity due to the lumbering ban, it’s becoming a growing luxury—a natural material with multifarious shapes and grains that are uniquely attained from the severe environment of Yakushima Island.

Yakusugi handicrafts include everything from furniture to chopsticks, artwork and accessories. They all emit a beautiful gloss and have a classical Japanese quality, sure to only become rarer as time goes on.
- Kagoshima Products Association
- source : japan-brand.jnto.go.jp/crafts -



- baby. com. do -


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. Reference : yakusugi handicraft .

. gangu 玩具 伝説, omochcha おもちゃ toy, toys and legends .
- Introduction -

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. Legends and Tales from Japan 伝説 - Introduction .

................................................................................. Yakushima Island 屋久島

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hitodama 人玉 spirit of a dead person, "soul flame"

屋久島では、人玉は丸い火に尾がついたもので、すーっと飛んでははちょっと退き、また飛んでは退くというふうに進む。

. Ikiryō, or shōryō, seirei, ikisudama (生霊, lit. "living ghost") .

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oniko 鬼鼓 demon drum

In the 10th lunar month the Gods are off to Izumo, so thy are not on the island. Therefore the Akuma 悪魔 devil, demon dominates the place.
The Akuma likes to hit the 太鼓 huge drum and a strange sound like doon dooon can be heard.


- Design. Koorintei Hyousen 2008 -

There is also a drum festival on Yakushima 屋久島天鼓祭, Tenkosai.

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ryuuoo 竜王 Ryu-O Dragon King

種子島、屋久島、三島などでは消極的な信仰が見られる。トカラ列島では「竜」のつく神詞はないが、乙姫神社が存在し、巫女のネーシ(内侍)の祝詞の中にリュウグウノカミが出てくる。

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- reference : nichibun yokai database 妖怪データベース -

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- - - - - Haiku and Senryu - - - - -


縄文杉語り出したる列島譚
妹尾健 Seno Ken


生御魂縄文杉を称へけり
石河義介


空見えぬ縄文杉を落つる瀧
梶山千鶴子


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Yakushima 屋久島 Yakushima island
is one of the Ōsumi Islands belonging to Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan. The island, 504.88 km2 (194.94 sq mi) in area, has a population of 13,178. Access to the island is by hydrofoil ferry (7 or 8 times a day from Kagoshima, depending on the season), slow car ferry (once or twice a day from Kagoshima), or by air to Yakushima Airport (3 to 5 times daily from Kagoshima, once daily from Fukuoka and once daily from Osaka). Administratively, the whole island is the town of Yakushima. The town also serves neighbouring Kuchinoerabujima. The majority of the island is within the borders of the Kirishima-Yaku National Park.
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !

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