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

p. 17


The names of the Deities that were born next were the Earthly-Eternally-Standing-Deity, 1 next the Luxuriant-Integrating-Master-Deity. 2 These two Deities were likewise [17] Deities born alone, and hid their persons. The names of the Deities that were born next were the Deity Mud-Earth-Lord next his younger sister the Deity Mud-Earth-Lady; 3 next the Germ-Integrating-Deity, next his younger sister the Life-Integrating-Deity; 4 next the Deity Elder-of-the-Great-Place, next his younger sister the Deity Elder-Lady-of-the-Great-Place; 5 next the Deity Perfect-Exterior, 6 [18] next his younger sister the Deity Oh-Awful-Lady; 7 next the Deity the Male-Who-Invites, next his younger sister the Deity the Female-Who-Invites. 8

From the Earthly-Eternally-Standing Deity down to the Deity the Female-Who-Invites in the previous list are what are termed the Seven Divine Generations.

(The two solitary Deities above [-mentioned] are each called one generation. Of the succeeding ten Deities each pair of deities is called a generation.9


p. 18


17:1 p. 17 Or, the Deity-Standing-Eternally-on-Earth, Kuni-no-toko-tachi-no-kami, Conf. Note 10 to Sect. I.

17:2 Toyo-kumo-nu-no-kami. There is much doubt as to the proper interpretation of this name. The characters ("cloud-moor"), with which the syllables read kumo-nu are written, are almost certainly phonetic, and the translator has followed Motowori's view as corrected by Hirata, according to which kumo is taken to stand for kumu, "integrating," and nu is considered to be an apocopated form of nushi, "master" (or more vaguely "the person who presides at or does a thing"). Mabuchi in his "Dictionary of Pillow-words," Article Sasutake, argues that the syllables in question should be interpreted in the sense of "coagulated mud"; out this is less satisfactory.

17:3 p. 18 U-hiji-no-kami and Su-hiji-ni-no-kami. The names of this pair tend themselves to a variety of interpretations. Motowori's view of the meaning of the first three syllables in each seems best, if it is founded on the Chinese characters with which they are written in the parallel passage of the "Chronicles," and it has therefore been adopted here. Hirata interprets the names thus: First-Mud-Lord and First-Sand-Lady, and takes ni to be an alternative form of the Honorific ne found in so many proper names. This view of the meaning of ni has been followed by the translator. On the other hand Mabuchi explains the names to mean respectively Floating-Mud-Earth and Sinking-Mud-Earth. The only thing therefore that is granted by all is that the names in question refer to the mud or slime out of which the world was afterwards made. The reader will bear in mind that "younger-sister" and "wife" are convertible names in Archaic Japanese. (See Introduction p. XXXVIII.)

17:4 Tsunu-guhi-no-kami and Iku-guhi-no-kami. The interpretation given is one in which the commentators agree, and which has some probability in its favour. It must however only be accepted with reservation.

17:5 Oho-to-no ji-no-kami and Oho-to-no-be-no-kami.

17:6 Omo-daru-no-kami. We might also render omo-daru by "perfect-face," i.e., perfectly beautiful."

17:7 Aya-kashiko-ne-no-kami. For "awful" we might substitute "venerable." Hirata, commentating on this name and the seven which precede it, says: U-hiji-ui and Su-hiji-ni are so named from their having contained the germs of what was to become the earth. Oho-to-no-ji and Oho-to-no-be are so called from the appearance of the incipient earth. Tsunu-guhi and Iku-guhi are so called from the united appearance of the earth and the Deities as they came into existence. Omo-daru and Kashiko-ne are so called from the completion of the august persons of the Deities. Thus their names were given to them from the gradual progress [of creation]."

17:8 Izana-gi-no-kami and Izana-mi-no-kami. There is some slight diversity of opinion as to the literal signification of the component parts of the names of these the best-known of the Deities hitherto mentioned, though the gist of the meaning remains unchanged. Motowori would prefer to read Iza-na-gi and Iza-a-mi, taking the syllable na as the Second Personal Pronoun "thou," and understanding the names thus: "the Prince-Who-Invites-Thee" and the "Princess-Who-Invites-Thee." It seems however more natural to look on izana as forming but one word, viz., the Root of the Verb Izanafu, "to invite." The older native commentators p. 19 mean the same thing when they tell us that na is an Expletive. The syllables gi and mi are of uncertain etymology, but occur in other Archaic words to denote the female and male of a pair. The appropriateness of the names of these deities will be seen by referring to Sect. IV.

17:9 For explanatory notes which are printed in small type in the original, small type is likewise used in this translation.

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