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The Nihon Shoki (日本書紀?), sometimes translated as The Chronicles of Japan, is the second oldest book of classical Japanese history. It is more elaborate and detailed than the Kojiki, the oldest, and has proven to be an important tool for historians and archaeologists as it includes the most complete extant historical record of ancient Japan. The Nihon Shoki was finished in 720 under the editorial supervision of Prince Toneri and with the assistance of Ō no Yasumaro. The book is also called the Nihongi (日本紀, lit. Japanese Chronicles).
Like the Kojiki, the Nihon Shoki begins with a series of myths, but continues its account through to events of the 8th century. It is believed to record accurately the latter reigns of Emperor Tenji, Emperor Temmu and Empress Jitō. The Nihon Shoki focuses on the merits of the virtuous rulers as well as the errors of the bad rulers. It describes episodes from mythological eras and diplomatic contacts with other countries. The Nihon Shoki was written in classical Chinese, as was common for official documents at that time. The Kojiki, on the other hand, is written in a combination of Chinese and phonetic transcription of Japanese (primarily for names and songs). The Nihon Shoki also contains numerous transliteration notes telling the reader how words were pronounced in Japanese. Collectively, the stories in this book and the Kojiki are referred to as the Kiki stories.
One of the stories that first appear in the Nihon Shoki is the tale of Urashima Tarō, which has been identified as the earliest example of a story involving time travel.
Book I - THE AGE OF THE GODS
Of old, Heaven and Earth were not yet separated, and the In and Yo not yet divided. They formed a chaotic mass like an egg which was of obscurely defined limits and contained germs.
The purer and clearer part was thinly drawn out, and formed Heaven, while the heavier and grosser element settled down and became Earth.
The finer element easily became a united body, but the consolidation of the heavy and gross element was accomplished with difficulty.
Heaven was therefore formed first, and Earth was established subsequently.
Thereafter divine beings were produced between them.
Hence it is said that when the world began to be created, the soil of which lands were composed floated about in a manner which might be compared to the floating of a fish sporting on the surface of the water.
At this time a certain thing was produced between Heaven and Earth. It was in form like a reed-shoot. Now this became transformed into a God, and was called Kuni-toko-tachi no Mikoto.
Next there was Kuni no sa-tsuchi no Mikoto, and next Toyo-kumu-nu no Mikoto, in all three deities
These were pure males spontaneously developed by the operation of the principle of Heaven.
In one writing it is said: '"When Heaven and Earth began, a thing existed in the midst of the Void. Its shape may not be described. Within it a deity was spontaneously produced, whose name was Kuni-toko-tachi no Mikoto, also called Kuni-soko-tachi no Mikoto. Next there was Kuni no sa-tsuchi no Mikoto, also called Kuni no sa-tachi no Mikoto. Next there was Toyo-kuni-nushi no Mikoto, also called Toyo-kumu-nu no Mikoto, Toyo-ka-fushi-no no Mikoto, Uki-fu-no-toyo-kahi no Mikoto, Toyo-kuni-no no Mikoto, Toyo-kuhi-no no Mikoto, Ha-ko-kuni-no no Mikoto, or Mi-no no Mikoto."
In one writing it is said: "Of old, when the land was Young and the earth young, it floated about, as it were floating oil. At this time a thing was produced within the land, in shape like a reed-shoot when it sprouts forth. From this there was a deity developed, whose name was Umashi-ashi-kabi-hiko-ji no Mikoto. Next there was Kuni no toko-tachi no Mikoto, and next Kuni no sa-tsuchi no Mikoto."
In one writing it is said: " When Heaven and Earth were in a state of chaos, there was first of all a deity, whose name was Umashi-ashi-kabi-hiko-ji no Mikoto. Next there was Kuni-soko-tachi no Mikoto."
In one writing it is said: "When Heaven and Earth began, there were deities produced together, whose names were, first, Kuni-no-toko-tachi no Mikoto, and next Kuni no satsuchi no Mikoto." It is further stated: "The names of the gods which were produced in the Plain of High Heaven were Ama no mi-naka-nushi no Mikoto, next Taka-mi-musubi no Mikoto, next Kami-mi-musubi no Mikoto."
In one writing it is said: "Before Heaven and Earth were produced, there was something which might be compared to a cloud floating over the sea. It had no place of attachment for its root. In the midst of this a thing was generated which resembled a reed-shoot when it is first produced in the mud. This became straightway transformed into human shape and was called Kuni no toko-tachi no Mikoto."
[In this fashion the "Nihongi " rambles on, telling much the same legends as the "Kojiki", until it comes to the days of the immediate ancestors of Jimmu Tenno. There were then two brothers, grandchildren of the goddess Ama-terasu.]
The elder brother Ho-no-susori no Mikoto had by nature a sea-gift; the younger brother Hiko-ho-ho-demi no Mikoto had by nature a mountain-gift. In the beginning the two brothers, the elder and the younger, conversed together, saying: “Let us for a trial exchange gifts." They eventually exchanged them, but neither of them gained aught by doing so. The elder brother repented his bargain, and returned to the younger brother his bow and arrows, asking for his fish-hook to be given back to him. But the younger brother had already lost the elder brother's fish-book, and there was no means of finding it. He accordingly made another new hook which he offered to his elder brother. But his elder brother refused to accept it, and demanded the old hook. The younger brother, grieved at this, forthwith took his cross-sword and forged from it new fish-hooks, which he heaped up in a winnowing tray, and offered to his brother. But his elder brother was wroth, and said: "These are not my old fish-hook: though they are many, I will not take them." And be continued repeatedly to demand it vehemently.
Therefore Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto's grief was exceedingly profound, and be went and made moan by the shore of the sea. There he met Shiho-tsutsu no Oji. The old man inquired of him saying - "Why dost thou grieve here?" He answered and told him the matter from first to last. The old man said: "Grieve no more. I will arrange this matter for thee." So he made a basket without interstices, and placing in it Hoho-demi no Mikoto, sank it in the sea. Forthwith he found himself at a pleasant strand, where he abandoned the basket, and proceeding on his way, suddenly arrived at the palace of the Sea-god. This palace was provided with battlements and turrets, and had stately towers. Before the gate there was a well, and over the well there grew a many branched cassia-tree, with wide-spreading boughs and leaves. Now Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto went up to the foot of this tree and loitered about.
After some time a beautiful woman appeared, and, pushing open the door, came forth. She at length took a jewel-vessel and approached. She was about to draw water, when, raising her eyes, she saw him, and was alarmed. Returning within, she spoke to her father and mother, saying: "There is a rare stranger at the foot of the tree before the gate." The god of the Sea thereupon prepared an eightfold cushion and led him in. When they had taken their seats, he inquired of him the object of his coming. Then Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto explained to him, in reply, all the circumstances. The Sea-god accordingly assembled the fishes, both great and small, and required of them an answer. They all said: "We know not. Only the Red-woman has had a sore mouth for some time past and has not come." She was therefore peremptorily summoned to appear and on her mouth being examined the lost hook was actually found.
After this, Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto took to wife the Seagod's daughter, Toyo-tama-hime, and dwelt in the sea-palace. For three years he enjoyed peace and pleasure, but still had a longing for his own country, and therefore sighed deeply from time to time. Toyo-tama-hime heard this and told her father, saying: "The Heavenly Grandchild often sighs as if in grief. It may be that it is the sorrow of long in, for his country."The god of the Sea thereupon drew to him Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto, and addressing him in an easy, familiar way, said: “If the Heavenly Grandchild desires to return to his country I will send him back." So he gave him the fish-hook which he had found, and in doing so instructed him, saying: "When thou givest this fish-hook to thy elder brother, before giving it to him call to it secretly, and say, 'A poor hook.'" He further presented to him the jewel of the flowing tide and the jewel of the ebbing tide, and instructed him, saying: "If thou dost dip the tide-flowing jewel, the tide will suddenly flow, and therewithal thou shalt drown thine elder brother. But in case thy elder brother should repent and beg forgiveness, if, on the contrary, thou dip the tide-ebbing jewel, the tide will spontaneously ebb, and therewithal thou shalt save him. If thou harass him in this way, thy elder brother will of his own accord render submission.
When the Heavenly Grandchild was about to set out on his return journey, Toyo-tama-hime addressed him, saying: "Thy handmaiden is already pregnant, and the time of her delivery is not far off. On a day when the winds and waves are raging, I will surely come forth to the sea-shore, and I pray thee that thou wilt make for me a parturition-house, and await me there."
When Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto returned to his palace, he complied implicitly with the instructions of the Sea-god, and the elder brother, Ho-no-susori no Mikoto, finding himself in the utmost straits, of his own accord admitted his offense, and said: "Henceforward I will be thy subject to perform mimic dances for thee. I beseech thee mercifully to spare my life." Thereupon he at length yielded his petition, and spared him. This Ho-no-susori no Mikoto was the first ancestor of the Kimi of Wobashi in Ata.
After this Toyo-tama-hime fulfilled her promise, and, bringing with her her younger sister, Tama-yori-hime, bravely confronted the winds and waves, and came to the sea-shore. When the time of her delivery was at hand, she besought Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto, saying: "When thy handmaiden is in travail, I pray thee do not look upon her." However, the Heavenly Grandchild could not restrain himself, but went secretly and peeped in. Now Toyo-tama-hime was just in childbirth, and had changed into a dragon. She was greatly ashamed, and said: " Hadst thou not disgraced me, I would have made the sea and land communicate with each other, and forever prevented them from being sundered. But now that thou hast disgraced me, wherewithal shall friendly feelings be knit together?" So she wrapped the infant inrushes, and abandoned it on the sea-shore. Then she barred the sea-path, and passed away. Accordingly the child was called Hiko-nagisa-take-u-gaya-fuki-ahezu no Mikoto.
Another account says that when the child was born, the Heavenly Grandchild approached and made inquiry, saying: "By what name ought the child to be called?" She answered and said: " Let him be called Hiko-nagisa-take-u-gayafuki-ahezu no Mikoto." Having said so, she took her departure straight across the sea. Then Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto made a song, saying:
Whatever befalls me,
Ne'er shall I forget my love
With whom I slept
In the islands of wild-ducks --
The birds of the offing."
After this, when Tovo-tama-hime heard what a fine boy her child was, her heart was greatly moved with affection' and she wished to come back and bring him up herself. But she could not rightly do so, and therefore she sent her younger sister Tama-yori-hime to nurture him. Now when Toyotama-hime sent Tama-yori-hime, she offered (to Hoho-demi no Mikoto) the following verse in answer:
Some may boast
Of the splendor
Of red jewels,
But those worn by my lord --
It is they which are admirable."
These two stanzas, one sent, and one in reply, are what are termed age-uta.
Another account says that when the Sea-god gave the fishhook to Hiko-hoho-demi no Mikoto, he instructed him, saying: " When thy elder brother's fish-hook is returned to him, let the Heavenly Grandchild say: 'Let it be to all thy descendants, of whatever degree of relationship, a poor hook, a paltry poor hook.' When thou hast thus spoken, spit thrice, and give it to him. Moreover, when thy elder brother goes to sea a-fishing, let the Heavenly Grandchild stand on the seashore and do that which raises the wind. Now that which raises the wind is whistling. If thou doest so, I will forthwith stir up the wind of the offing and the wind of the shore, and will overwhelm and vex him with the scurrying waves." Ho no ori no Mikoto returned, and obeyed implicitly the instructions of the god. When a day came on which the elder brother went a-fishing, the younger brother stood on the shore of the sea, and whistled.
Then there arose a sudden tempest, and the elder brother was forthwith overwhelmed and harassed. Seeing no means of saving his life, lie besought his younger brother from afar, saying: “Thou hast dwelt long in the ocean-plain, and must possess some excellent art. I pray thee teach it to me. If thou save my life, my descendants of all degrees of relationship shall not leave the neighborhood of thy precinct, but shall act as thy mime-vassals." Thereupon the younger brother left off whistling, and the wind again returned to rest. So the elder brother recognized the younger brother's power, and freely admitted his fault. But the younger brother was wroth, and -would hold no converse with him. Hereupon the elder brother, with nothing but his waistcloth on, and smearing the palms of his bands and his face with red earth, said to his younger brother: “Thus do I defile my body, and make myself thy mime forever." So kicking up his feet, he danced along and practiced the manner of his drowning struggles. First of all, when the tide reached his feet, he did the foot divination; when it reached his knees, he raised up his feet; when it reached his thighs, he ran round in a circle; when it reached his loins, he rubbed his loins; when it reached his sides, he placed his hands upon his breast; when it reached his neck, be threw up his hands, waving his palms. From that time until now, this custom has never ceased.
Now, when the child Hiko-nagisa-take-u-gaya-fuki-abezu no Mikoto grew up, he took his aunt Tama-yori-hime as his consort, and had by her in all four male children. Long after, .Hiko-nagisa-take-u-gaya-fuki-ahezu no Mikoto died, in the palace of the western country, and was buried in the Misasagi on the top of Mount Ahira in Hiuga.
BOOK III -THE EMPEROR KAMI-YAMATO IHARE-BIKO
The Emperor Kami Yamato Ihare-biko's personal name was Hiko-hoho-demi. [This is the legendary conquerer known to later ages as Jimmu Tenno.] He was the fourth child of Hiko-nagisa-take-u-gaya-fuki-ahezu no Mikoto. His mother's name was Tama-yori-hime, daughter of the Sea-god. From his birth, this Emperor was of clear intelligence and resolute will. At the age of fifteen he was made heir to the throne. When he grew up, he married Ahira-tsu-hime, of the district of Ata in the province of Hiuga, and made her his consort. By her he had Tagishi-mimi no Mikoto and Kisu-mimi no Mikoto.
When he reached the age of forty-five, he addressed his elder brothers and his children, saying: "Of old, our Heavenly deities Taka-mi-musubi no Mikoto, and Oho-hiru-me no Mikoto, pointing to this land of fair rice-ears of the fertile reed-plain, gave it to our Heavenly ancestor, Hiko-ho no ninigi no Mikoto. Thereupon Hiko-ho no ninigi no Mikoto, throwing open the barrier of Heaven and clearing a cloud-path, urged on his superhuman course until he came to rest. At this time the world was given over to widespread desolation. It was an age of darkness and disorder. In this gloom, therefore, he fostered justice, arid so governed this western border. Our Imperial ancestors and Imperial parent, like gods, like sages, accumulated happiness and amassed glory. Many years elapsed. From the date when our Heavenly ancestor descended until now it is over 1,792,470 years .But the remote regions do not yet enjoy the blessings of Imperial rule. Every town has always been allowed to have its lord, and every village its chief, who, each one for himself, makes division of territory and practises mutual aggression and conflict.
"Now I have heard from the Ancient of the Sea, that in the East there is a fair land encircled on all sides by blue mountains. -Moreover, there is there one who flew down riding in a Heavenly Rock-boat. I think that this land will undoubtedly be suitable for the extension of the Heavenly task,' so that its ,Iorv should fill the universe. It is, doubtless, the center of the world." The person who flew down was, I believe, Nigi-haya-hi. Why should we not proceed thither, and make it the capital?"
All the Imperial Princess answered, and said: “The truth of this is manifest. This thought is constant1y present to our minds also. Let us go thither quickly." This was the year Kinoye Tora (51st) of the Great Year. (667 B.C.)
In that year, in winter, on the Kanoto Tori day (the 5th) of the 10th month, the new moon of which was on the day Hinoto Mi, the Emperor in person led the Imperial Princes and a naval force on an expedition against the East. When he arrived at the Haya-suhi gate, there was there a fisherman who came riding in a boat. The Emperor summoned him, and then inquired of him, saying: "Who art thou?" He answered and said: "Thy servant is a Country-god, and his name is Utsu-hiko. I angle for fish in the bays of ocean. Hearing that the son of the Heavenly deity was coming, therefore I forthwith came to receive him." Again he inquired of him, saying: "Canst thou act as my guide?" He answered and said: "I will do so." The Emperor ordered the end of a pole of shihi wood to be given to the fisher, and caused him to be taken and pulled into the Imperial vessel, of which be was made pilot. A name was specially granted him, and he was called Shibi-ne-tsu-hiko." He was the first ancestor of the Yamato no Atahe.
Proceeding on their voyage, they arrived at Usa in the land of Tsukushi. At this time there appeared the ancestors of the Kuni-tsu-ko of Usa, named Usa-tsu-hiko and Usatsu-hime. They built a palace raised on one pillar on the banks of the River Usa, and offered them a banquet. Then, by Imperial command, Usa-tsu-hime was given in marriage to the Emperor's attendant minister Ama no tane no Mikoto. Now Ama no tane no Mikoto was the remote ancestor of the Nakatomi Uji.
11th month, 9th day. The Emperor arrived at the harbor of Oka in the land of Tsukushi.
12th month, 27th day. He arrived at the province of A-ki, where he dwelt in the Palace of Ye.
(666 B.C.) The year Kinoto U, Spring, 3rd month, 6th day. Going onward, he entered the land of Kibi, and built a temporary palace, in which he dwelt. It was called the Palace of Takasbima. Three years passed, during which time be set in order the helms of his ships, and prepared a store of provisions. It was his desire by a single effort to subdue the Empire.
(663 B.C.) The year Tsuchinoye Muma, Spring, 2nd month, 11th day. The Imperial forces at length proceeded eastward, the prow of one ship touching the stern of another. Just when they reached Cape Naniha they encountered a current of great swiftness. Whereupon that place was called Nami-haya (wave-swift) or Nami-hana (wave-flower). It is now called Naniha which is a corruption of this.
3rd month, 10th day. Proceeding upward against the stream, they went straight on, and arrived at the port of Awokumo no Shira-date, in the township of Kusaka, in the province of Kafuebi.
Summer, 4th month, 9th day. The Imperial forces in martial array marched on to Tatsuta. The road was narrow and precipitous, and the men were unable to march abreast, so they returned and again endeavored to go eastward, crossing over Mount Ikoma. In this way they entered the inner country.
Now when Naga-sune-hiko heard this, be said: "The object of the children of the Heavenly deity in coming hither is assuredly to rob me of my country." so be straightway levied all the forces under his dominion, and intercepted them at the Hill of Kusaka. A battle was engaged, and Itsuse no Mikoto was hit by a random arrow on the elbow. The Imperial forces were unable to advance against the enemy. The Emperor was vexed, and revolved in his inmost heart a divine plan, saying: "I am the descendant of the Sun-goddess, and if I proceed against the Sun to attack the enemy, I shall act contrary to the way of Heaven. Better to retreat and make a show of weakness. Then sacrificing to the gods of Heaven and Earth, and bringing on our backs the might of the Sun-goddess, let us follow her rays and trample them down. If we do so, the enemy will assuredly be routed of themselves, and we shall not stain our swords with blood." They all said: "It is good." Thereupon he gave orders to the army, saying: "Wait a while, and advance no further." So he withdrew his forces, and the enemy also did not dare to attack him. He then retired to the port of Kusaka, where he set up shields, and made a warlike show. Therefore the name of this port was changed to Tatetsu which is now corrupted into Tadetsu.
Before this, at the battle of Kusaka, there was a man who hid in a great tree, and by so doing escaped danger. So pointing to this tree, he said. "I am grateful to it, as to my mother." Therefore the people of the day called that place Omo no ki no Mura .
5th month, 8th day. The army arrived at the port of Yamaki in Chinu (also called Port Yama no wi). Now Itsuse no Mikoto's arrow wound was extremely painful. He grasped his sword, and striking a martial attitude, said "How exasperating it is that a man should die of a wound received at the hands of slaves, and should not revenge it!" The people of that day therefore called the place Wo no minato.
Proceeding onward, they reached Mount Kama in the land of Kii, where Itsuse no Mikoto died in the army, and was therefore buried at Mount Kama.
6th month, 23rd day. The army arrived at the village of Nagusa, where they put to death the Tohe of Nagusa. Finally they crossed the moor of Sano, and arrived at the village of kami in Kuniano. Here be embarked in the rock-boat of Heaven, and leading his army, proceeded onward by slow degrees. In the midst of the sea, they suddenly met with a violent wind, and the Imperial vessel was tossed about. Then Ina-ihi no Mikoto exclaimed and said: "Alas! my ancestors were Heavenly deities, and my mother was a goddess of the Sea. Why do they harass me by land, and why, moreover, do they harass me by sea." When he had said this, he drew his sword and plunged into the sea, where he became changed into the god Sabi-mochi
Mike Irino no Mikoto, also indignant at this, said: "My mother and my aunt are both Sea-goddesses: why do they raise great billows to overwhelm us?”So treading upon the waves, he went to the Eternal Land. The Emperor was now alone with the Imperial Prince Tagishi-mimi no Mikoto. Leading his army forward, he arrived at Port Arazaka in Kumano (also called Nishiki Bay), where he put to death the Tobe of Nishiki. At this time the gods belched up a poisonous vapor, from which every one suffered. For this reason the Imperial army was again unable to exert itself. Then there was there a man by name Kuniano no Takakuraji, who unexpectedly had a dream, in which Ama-terasu no Ohokami spoke to Take-mika-tsuchi no Kami, saying: "I still hear a sound of disturbance from the Central Land of Reed-Plains. Do thou again go and chastise it." Take-mika-tsuchi no Kami answered and said: "Even if I go not, I can send down my sword, with which I subdued the land, upon which the country will of its own accord become peaceful." To this Ama-terasu no Kami assented.
Thereupon Take-mik-a-tsuchi no Kami addressed Takakuraji, saying: "My sword, which is called Futsu no Mitama, I will now place in thy storehouse. Do thou take it and present it to the Heavenly Grandchild." Takakuraji said "Yes," and thereupon awoke. The next morning, as instructed in his dream, be opened the storehouse, and on looking in, there was indeed there a sword which had fallen down (from Heaven), and was standing upside down on the plank floor of the storehouse. So he took it and offered it to the Emperor. At this time the Emperor happened to be asleep. He awoke suddenly, and said: “What a long time I have slept! " On inquiry he found that the troops who had been affected by the poison had all recovered their senses and were afoot. The Emperor then endeavored to advance into the interior, but among, the mountains it was so precipitous that there was no road by which they could travel, and they wandered about not knowing whither to direct their march. Then Amaterasu no Obo-kami instructed the Emperor in a dream of the night, saying: "I will now send thee the Yata-garasu," make it thy guide through the land." Then there did indeed appear the Yata-garasu flying down from the Void. The Emperor said: " The coming of this crow is in due accordance with my auspicious dream. How grand! How splendid! My Imperial ancestor, Ama-terasu no Oho-kami, desires therewith to assist me in creating the hereditary institution.'
At this time Hi no Omi no Mikoto, ancestor of the Ohotomo House, taking with him Oho-kume as commander of the main body, guided by the direction taken by the crow, looked up to it and followed after, until at length they arrived at the district of Lower Uda. Therefore they named the place which they reached the village of Ukechi in Uda.
At this time, by an Imperial order, he commended Hi no Omi no Mikoto, saying: " Thou art faithful and brave, and art, moreover, a successful guide. Therefore will I give thee a new name, and will call thee Michi no Omi."
Autumn, 8th month, 2nd day. The Emperor sent to summon Ukeshi the Elder and Ukeshi the Younger. These twowere chiefs of the district of Uda. Now Ukesbi the Elder did not come. But Ukeshi the Younger came, and making obeisance at the gate of the camp, declared as follows: “Thy servant's elder brother, Ukeshi the Elder, shows signs of resistance. Hearing that the descendant of Heaven was about to arrive, he forthwith raised an army with which to make an attack. But having seen from afar the might of the Imperial army, he was afraid, and did not dare to oppose it. Therefore be has secretly placed his troops in ambush, and has built for the occasion a new palace, in the ball of which he has prepared engines. It is his intention to invite the Emperor to a banquet there, and then to do him a mischief.
I pray that his treachery be noted, and that good care be taken to make preparation against it." The Emperor straightway sent Michi no Omi no Mikoto to observe the signs of his opposition. Michi no Omi no Mikoto clearly ascertained his hostile intentions, and being greatly enraged, shouted at him in a blustering manner: "Wretch! thou shalt thyself dwell in the house which thou hast made." So grasping his sword, and drawing his bow, he urged him and drove him within it. Ukeshi the Elder being guilty before Heaven, and the matter not admitting of excuse, of his own accord trod upon the engine and was crushed to death. His body was then brought out and decapitated, and the blood which flowed from it reached above the ankle. Therefore that place was called Uda no Chi-hara. After this Ukeshi the Younger prepared a great feast of beef and sake with which he entertained the Imperial army. The Emperor distributed this flesh and sake to the common soldiers, upon which they sang the following verses:
In the high castle/tree of Uda tree
I set a snare for woodcock,
But no woodcock came to it;
A valiant whale came to it.
This is called a Kume song. At the present time, when the Department of Music performs this song, there is still the measurement of great and small by the hand, as well as a distinction of coarse and fine in the notes of the voice. This is by a rule banded down from antiquity.
After this the Emperor wished to inspect the land of Yoshino, so taking personal command of the light troops, he made a progress round by way of Ukechi mura in Uda.
When he came to Yoshino, there was a man who came out of a well. He shone, and had a tail. The Emperor inquired of him, saying: "What man art thou?" He answered and said: Thy servant is a local deity, and his name is Wi-hi-kari." He it is who was the first ancestor of the Yoshino no Obito. Proceeding a little farther, there was another man with a tail, who burst open a rock and came forth from it. The Emperor inquired of him, saying: "What man art thou?" He answered and said: "Thy servant is the child of Iha-oshi-wake." It is he who was the first ancestor of the Kuzu of Yoshino.
Then skirting the river, he proceeded westward, when there appeared another man, who had made a fish-trap and was catching fish. On the Emperor making inquiry of him, he answered and said: " Thy servant is the son of Nihemotsu." He it is who was the first ancestor of the U-kahi of Ata.
9th month, 5th day. The Emperor ascended to the peak of Mount Takakura in Uda, whence be had a prospect over all the land. On. Kuni-mi" Hill there were descried eighty bandits. Moreover, at the acclivity of Me-zaka there was posted an army of women, and at the acclivity of Wo-zaka " there was stationed a force of men. At the acclivity of Sumizaka was placed burning charcoal. This was the origin of the names Me-zaka, Wo-zaka, and Sumi-zaka.
Again there was the army of Ye-shiki, which covered all the village of Ihare. All the places occupied by the enemy were strong positions, and therefore the roads were cut off and obstructed, so that there was no room for passage. The Emperor, indignant at this, made prayer on that night in person, and then fell asleep. The Heavenly deity appeared to him in a dream, and instructed him, saying: "Take earth from within the shrine of the Heavenly Mount Kagu, and of it make eighty Heavenly platters. Also make sacred jars" and therewith sacrifice to the gods of Heaven and Earth. Moreover, pronounce a solemn imprecation. If thou doest so, the enemy will render submission of their own accord." The Emperor received with reverence the directions given in his dream, and proceeded to carry them into execution.
Now Ukeshi the Younger again addressed the Emperor, saying: "There are in the province of Yamato, in the village of Shiki, eighty Shiki bandits. Moreover, in the village of Takawoliari (some say Katsuraki) there are eighty Akagane bandits. All these tribes intend to give battle to the Emperor, and thy servant is anxious in his own mind on his account. It were now good to take clay from the Heavenly fount Kagu, and therewith to make Heavenly platters with which to sacrifice to the gods of the Heavenly shrines and of the Earthly shrines. If after doing so, thou dost attack the enemy, they may be easily driven off."
The Emperor, who had already taken the words of his dream for a good omen, When he now heard the words of Ukeshi the Younger was Still more pleased in his heart. He caused Shihi-netsu-hiko to put on ragged garments and a grass hat, and to disguise himself as an old man. He also caused Ukeshi the Younger to cover himself with a winnowing tray, so as to assume the appearance of an old woman, and then addressed them saying-: "Do ye two proceed to the Heavenly Mount Kagu, and secretly take earth from its summit. Having done so, return hither. By means of you I shall then divine whether my undertaking will be successful or not. Do your utmost and be watchful."
Now the enemy's army filled the road, and made all passage impossible. Then Shihi-netsu-hiko prayed, and said: " If it will be possible for our Emperor to conquer this land, let the road by which we must travel become open. But if not, let the brigands surely oppose our passage." Having thus spoken they set forth, and went straight onward. Now the hostile band, seeing the two men, laughed loudly, and said: " What an uncouth old man and old woman! " So with one accord they left the road, and allowed the two men to pass and proceed to the mountain, where they took the clay and returned with it. Hereupon the Emperor was greatly pleased, and with this clay he made eighty platters, eighty Heavenly small jars and sacred jars, with which he went up to the upper waters of the River Nifu and sacrificed to the gods of Heaven and Earth. Immediately, on the Asahara plain by the river of Uda, it became as it were like foam on the water, the result of the curse cleaving to them.
Moreover, the Emperor went on to utter a vow, saying: " I will now make aMe n the eighty platters without using water. If the ame is formed, then shall I assuredly without effort and without recourse to the might of arms reduce the Empire to peace." So he made ame, which forthwith became formed of itself.
Again he made a vow, saving: “I will now take the sacred jars and sink thern in the River Nifu. If the fishes, whether great or small, become every one drunken and are carried down the stream, like as it were to floating maki leaves, then shall I assuredly succeed in establishing this land. But if this be not so, there will never be any result." Thereupon he sank the jars in the river with their mouths downward. After a while the fish all came to the surface, gaping and gasping as they floated down the stream. Then Shihi-netsu-hiko, seeing this, represented it to the Emperor, who was greatly rejoiced, and plucking up a five-hundred-branched masakaki tree of the upper waters of the River Nifu, be did worship therewith to all the gods. It was with this that the custom began of setting sacred jars.
At this time he commanded Michi no Omi no Mikoto, saying: "We are now in person" about to celebrate a public festival to Taka-mi-musubi no Mikoto, and I appoint thee Ruler of the festival, and grant thee the title of Idzu-hime. The earthen jars which are set up shall be called the Idzube, or sacred jars, the fire shall be called Idzu no Kagu-tsuchi, or sacred-fire-elder, the water shall be called Idzu no Midzuha no me, or sacred-water-female, the food shall be called Idzu-Uka no me, or sacred-food-female, the firewood shall be called Idzu no Yama-tsuchi, or sacred-mountain-elder, and the grass shall be called Idzu no No-tsuchi, or sacred-moor-elder."
Winter, 10th month, 1st day. The Emperor tasted the food of the Idzube, and arraying his troops set forth upon his march. He first of all attacked the eighty bandits at Mount Kunimi, routed and slew them. It was in this campaign that the Emperor, fully resolved on victory, made these verses, saying:
Like the Shitadami
Which creep around
The great rock
Of the Sea of Ise
Where blows the divine wind --
Like the Shitadami,
My boys! my boys!
We will creep around,
And smite them utterly,
And smite them utterly."
In this poem, by the great rock is intended the Hill of Kunimi.
After this the band which remained was still numerous, and their disposition could not be fathomed. So the Emperor privately commanded Michi no Omi no Mikoto, saying: "Do thou take with thee the Oho-kume, and make a great muro at the village of Osaka. Prepare a copious banquet, invite the enemy to it, and then capture them." Michi no Omi no Mikoto thereupon, in obedience to the Emperor's secret behest, dug a muro at Osaka, and having selected his bravest soldiers, stayed therein mingled with the enemy. He secretly arranged with them, saying: “When they have got tipsy with sake, I will strike up a song. Do you, when you hear the sound of my song, all at the same time- stab the enemy." Having made this arrangement they took their seats, and the drinking-bout proceeded. The enemy, unaware that there was any plot, abandoned themselves to their feelings, and promptly became intoxicated. Then Michi no Omi no Mikoto struck up the following song:
In the great muro-house,
Though men in plenty
Enter and stay,
We the glorious
Sons of warriors,
Wielding our mallet-heads,
Wielding our stone-mallets,
Will smite them utterly."
Now when our troops beard this song, they all drew at the same time their mallet-beaded swords, and simultaneously slew the enemy, so that there were no eaters left. The Imperial army were greatly delighted; they looked up to Heaven and laughed. Therefore he made a song, saying:
Though folk say
That one Yemishi
Is a match for one hundred men
They do not so much as resist."
The practice, according to which at the present time the Kume sing this and then laugh loud, had this origin.
Again he sang, saying:
Ho now is the time;
Ho! now is the time;
Ha! Ha! Psha!
All these songs were sung in accordance with the secret behest of the Emperor. He had not presumed to compose them of his own motion.
Then the Emperor said: "It is the part of a good general when victorious to avoid arrogance. The chief brigands have now been destroyed, but there are ten bands of villains of a similar stamp, who are disputatious. Their disposition cannot be ascertained. Why should we remain for a long time in one place? By so doing we could not have control over emergencies." So he removed his camp to another place.
11th month, 7th day. The Imperial army proceeded in great force to attack the Hiko of Shiki. First of all the Emperor sent a messenger to summon Shiki the Elder, but he refused to obey. Again the Yata-garasu was sent to bring him. When the crow reached his camp it cried to him, saying: "The child of the Heavenly deity sends for thee. Haste! haste!" Shiki the Elder was enraged at this, and said: "Just when I heard that the conquering deity of Heaven was coming and was indignant at this, why shouldst thou, a bird of the crow tribe, utter such an abominable cry?" So be drew his bow and aimed at it. The crow forthwith fled away, and next proceeded to the house of Shiki the Younger, where it cried, saying: " The child of the Heavenly deity summons thee. Haste! haste! "
Then Shiki the Younger was afraid, and, changing countenance, said: " Thy servant, hearing of the approach of the conquering deity of Heaven, is full of dread morning and evening. Well hast thou cried to me, O crow." He straightway made eight leaf-platters, on which he disposed food, and entertained the crow. Accordingly, in obedience to the crow he proceeded to the Emperor and informed him, saying: " My elder brother, Shiki the Elder, hearing of the approach of the child of the Heavenly deity, forthwith assembled eighty bandits and provided arms, with which he is about to do battle with thee. It will be well to take measures against him without delay." The Emperor accordingly assembled his generals and inquired of them, saying: " It appears that Shiki the Elder has now rebellious intentions. I summoned him, but again he will not come. What is to be done?" The generals said: "Shiki the Elder is a crafty knave. It will be well, first of all, to send Shiki the Younger to make matters clear to him, and at the same time to make explanations to Kuraji the Elder and Kuraji the Younger. If after that they still refuse submission, it will not be too late to take warlike measures against them."
Shiki the Younger was accordingly sent to explain to them their interests. But Shiki the Elder and the others adhered to their foolish design, and would not consent to submit. Then Shihi-netsu-hiko advised is follows: “Let us first send out our feebler troops by the Osaka road. When the enemy sees them he will assuredly proceed thither with all his best troops. We should then straightway urge forward our robust troops, and make straight For Sumi-zaka. Then with the water of the River Uda we should sprinkle the burning charcoal, and suddenly take them unawares, when they cannot fail to be routed." The Emperor approved this plan, and sent out the feebler troops toward the enemy, who, thinking, that a powerful force was approaching, awaited them with all their power. Now up to this time, whenever the Imperial army attacked, they invariably captured, and when they fought they were invariably victorious, so that the fighting men were all wearied out. Therefore the Emperor, to comfort the hearts of his leaders and men, struck off this verse:
As we fight,
Going forth and watching
From between the trees
Of Mount Inasa,
We are famished.
Ye keepers of cormorants
(Birds of the island),
Come now to our aid."
In the end he crossed Sumi-zaka with the stronger troops, and, going round by the rear, attacked them from two sides and put them to the rout, killing their chieftains Shiki the Elder and the others.
12th month, 4th day. The Imperial army at length attacked Naga-sune-hiko and fought with him repeatedly, but was unable to gain the victory. Then suddenly the sky became overcast, and hail fell. There appeared a wondrous kite of a golden color, which came flying and perched on the end of the Emperor's bow. The luster of this kite was of dazzling brightness, so that its appearance was like that of lightning. In consequence of this all Naga-sune-hiko's soldiers were dazzled and bewildered so that they could not fight stoutly.
Nagasune was the original name of the village, whence it became the name of a man. But in consequence of the lmperial army obtaining the favorable omen of the kite, the men of that time called it Tobi no mura. It is now called Tomi, which is a corruption of this.
Ever since Itsuse no Mikoto was hit by an arrow at the battle of Kusaka and died, the Emperor bore this in mind, and constantly cherished resentment for it. On this campaign it was his desire to, put all to death, and therefore he composed these verses, saying:
"My mouth tingles
With the ginger planted
At the bottom of the hedge
By the glorious Sons of warriors--
cannot forget it;Let us smite them utterly."Again he sang, saying:In the millet-field
Is one stem of odorous garlic
Sons of warriors
Binding its stem
And binding its shoots Will smite it utterly."Then again letting loose his army, he suddenly attacked him. In general, all these songs composed by the Emperor are termed kume uta, in allusion to the persons who took and sang them.
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