The Book of Yokai: Mysterious Creatures of Japanese Folklore


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From the Publisher

Ninmenju. Original illustration by Shinonome Kijin.Ninmenju. Original illustration by Shinonome Kijin.

A History of Yokai

“In Japan, as elsewhere, inexplicable occurrences and supernatural creatures have been part of the cultural imagination for as long as history has been recorded. Broadly speaking, these diverse mysterious phenomena and weird ‘things’ have come to be called yokai.”

Uncover Tsukumogami

Introduction to tsukumogami 付喪神Introduction to tsukumogami 付喪神

“Notably, many of the weird creatures parading through Tosa’s scroll are household items and other everyday objects animated with legs, arms, eyes, and occasionally a tail. There are, for example, a number of musical instruments, such as a red-limbed creature with a biwa (Japanese-style lute) for a head, dragging what looks like a koto with legs and a reptilian tail.11 Such yokai-ifi ed everyday objects are called tsukumogami.”

Meet Hitotsume-kozo


“Hitotsume-kozo- is a widely distributed yokai distinguished, as its name implies, by having a single eye. …Narratives about hitotsume-kozo- vary; in general he is not portrayed as particularly evil or deadly but is more like a troublesome mischief-maker. In some legends, he scares people by showing a face lacking a mouth and nose but having one large eye in the middle. Occasionally he uses his long tongue to lick people.”

Discover more about history and culture of yokai with The Book of Yokai.

Publisher ‏ : ‎ University of California Press; First edition (January 14, 2015)
Language ‏ : ‎ English
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 336 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0520271025
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0520271029
Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1 pounds
Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches

The Book of Yokai: Mysterious Creatures of Japanese Folklore


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