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The Kojiki, translated by Basil Hall Chamberlain, [1919], at

p. 135 [111]


So then [the Heaven-Shining-Great-August-Deity and the High-Integrating-Deity] commanded 2 His Augustness Heaven's-Prince-Rice-ear-Ruddy-Plenty; and he, leaving the Heavenly Rock-Seat, 3 pushing asunder the eight-fold heavenly spreading clouds, and dividing a road with a mighty road-dividing, set off floating shut up in the Floating Bridge of Heaven, 4 and descended from Heaven onto the peak of Kuzhifuru which is Takachiho in Tsu-kushi. 5 [112] So His Heavenly Great Wondrous Augustness 6 and His Augustness Heaven's-Round-Eyes, 7 both 8 taking on their backs the Heavenly rock-quivers, 9 taking at their side the large mallet-headed swords, 10 taking in their hands the Heavenly vegetable-wax-tree bow, 11 and clasping under their arms the Heavenly true deer-arrows, stood in his august van in respectful attendance. So His Heavenly-Great-Wondrous-Augustness 12 (is the ancestor of the Kume Lords13 Thereupon he said: "This place is opposite to the "land of Kara." 14 One comes straight across to the august Cape of Kasasa; 15 and it is a land whereon [113] the morning sun shines straight, a land which the evening sun's sunlight illumines. So this place is an exceedingly good place." 16 Having thus spoken, he made stout the

p. 136

temple-pillars on the nethermost rock-bottom, and made high the cross-beams to the Plain of High Heaven, 17 and dwelt there.

p. 137


135:1 p. 136 Motowori makes Sect. XXXIV commence here, and it seems on the whole best to follow him in so doing, as the entire period of the reign on earth of the first of the heaven-descended gods is thus included in one Section. On the other hand, the "Descent from Heaven," which gives its name to the preceding Sect., cannot properly be said to be accomplished until the end of this first sentence of Sect. XXXIV. It will be remembered that the Japanese name of this first deity-king is (in its abbreviated and most commonly used form) Hiko-ho-no-ni-nigi.

135:2 Motowori proposes to suppress the character , "commanded," in this clause, and the character , "and," at the beginning of the next, and to take the Prince as the subject of the whole sentence. This would be convenient; but the characters and are in all the texts.

135:3 I.e., his place in Heaven. The original Japanese of the term is ama-no-ikakura.

135:4 The translator has adopted the interpretation proposed by Hirata, the only commentator who gives an acceptable view of this extremely difficult clause, which Motowori admitted that he did not understand. It must be remembered that Hirata identifies the "Floating Bridge of Heaven" with the "Heavenly Rock-Boat." (For details see his "Exposition of the Ancient Histories," Vol. XXVII, pp. 31-32).

135:5 Tsukushi, anciently the name of the whole of the large island forming the South-Western corner of Japan, and Himuka (in modern pronunciation Hiuga), one of the provinces into which that island is divided, have already been mentioned in Sect. V, Note 14 and Sect. X, Note 4 respectively. It is uncertain whether the mountain here named is the modern Takachiho-yama or Kirishima-yama, but the latter view is generally preferred. Kuzhifuru is explained (perhaps somewhat hazardously) as meaning "wondrous," while Taka-chi-ho signifies "high-thousand-rice-ears."

135:6 Ame-no-oshi-hi no mikoto. The interpretation is only conjectural.

135:7 Ama-tsu-kume no mikoto. The traditional origin of this curious name will be found below in the third and fourth Songs of Sect. LI (see Notes 21 and 22 to that Section), where the "sharp slit eyes" of this worthy are specially referred to. But Moribe seems to prove that kume is in reality not a personal name at all, but simply the old term for p. 137 "army," through a misconception of the original import of which has arisen the idea that Oho-kume and Oho-tomo were two distinct personages. The elaborate and interesting note on this subject in his "Examination of Difficult Words," Vol. II., pp. 46-55 is well worth consulting. The only point in which the present writer differs from him is with regard to the etymology of the word kume, which Moribe connects with kumi, "a company," and kuma, "a bravo," whereas in the opinion of the former it is probably nothing more nor less than an ancient mispronunciation of the Chinese word chun ( ) modern Japanese gun, "army," "troops."

135:8 The Auxiliary Numeral here used is that properly denoting human beings, not deities, futari ( ), instead of futa-hashira ( ).

135:9 In Japanese ama no iha-yugi.

135:10 This is the generally received interpretation of the obscure original term kabu-tsuchi (or kabu-tsutsui) no tachi, the parallel term ishi-tsutsui being understood to mean "a mallet-headed sword made of stone." (Both names appear below in the Song at the end of Sect. XLVIII, Note 4). Moribe, however, in his "Idzu no Chi-waki," rejecting the opinion that any part of the swords were made of stone, explains kabu-tsutsui in the sense of "broad-tempered" and ishi-tsutsui in that of "hard-tempered."

135:11 For the bows and arrows here mentioned see XXXI. Note 5.

135:12 Ohotomo no murazhi, a common "gentile name" down to historical times. Oho-tomo means "numerous companies "or "large tribe," in allusion, as Moribe supposes, to the force of which the personage here mentioned was the general.

135:13 Kume no atahe. Conf. Note 7.

135:14 Or Kan according to the Sinico-Japanese reading. We might render it in English by Korea. The Chinese character is .

135:15 Etymology uncertain. An alternative form of this name, which is preserved in the "Chronicle," is Nagasa, which Hirata thinks may stand for Nagasaki.

135:16 This is the sense of the original Japanese text of this passage as literally as it can be rendered, and so the older editors understood it. Motowori however, though not daring actually to alter the characters, assumes that they are corrupt, and in his kane rendering gives us this instead: "Thereupon, passing searchingly through a bare-backed empty country, he arrived at the august cape of Kasasa, and said: 'This land is a land whereon the morning sun shines straight, etc.'" His evident reason for wishing to alter the reading is simply and solely to conceal p. 138 the fact that Korea is mentioned in a not unfriendly manner, in the traditional account of the divine age, i.e. long before the epoch of its so-called revelation and conquest by the Empress Jin-go (see Sect. XCVI to XCVIII). That the parallel passage of the "Chronicles" lends some sanction to his view is no excuse for so dishonest a treatment of the text he undertakes to commentate; for the "Records" and the "Chronicles "often differ greatly in the: accounts they have preserved. One of Motowori's arguments is that, as Kasasa is said to have been in the province of Hiuga, it could not have been opposite to Korea, seeing that Hiuga faces east and not west. He here forgets that a little later on in his own same Commentary (Vol. XVII, p. 86) he asserts that Hiuga in ancient times included the provinces of Ohosumi and Satsuma, the latter of which does face west.

136:17 I.e., he built himself a palace to dwell in (Conf. Sect. XXXII, Note 27).

Next: Section XXXV.—The Duchess of Saru