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

p. 175


After this, when about to smite the Prince of Tomi, 1 he sang, saying: [143]

"The children of the augustly powerful army will smite and finish the one stem of smelly chive in the millet-field,—the stem of its root, both its root and shoots." 2

Again he sang:

"The ginger, which the children of the augustly powerful army planted near the hedge, resounds in the mouth. I shall not forget it. I will smite and finish it." 3

p. 176

[144] Again he sang, saying:

"Like the turbinidæ creeping round the great rock in the sea of Ise [on which blows] the divine wind, [so] will we creep round, and smite and finish them." 4

Again when he smote Shiki the Elder Brother and Shiki the Younger Brother, 5 the august army was temporarily exhausted. Then he sang, saying:

"As we fight placing our shields in a row, going and watching from between the trees on Mount Inasa, oh! we are famished. Ye keepers of cormorants, the birds of the island, come now to our rescue!" 6



175:1 p. 176 See Sect. XLIV, Notes 28 et seq. The apparent want of sequence in this portion of the narrative is not noticed by Motowori. We might endeavour to, harmonize it by supposing that after having slain the "earth-spiders," etc., the Emperor Jim-mu turned round again to fight with the Prince of Tomi, who had harassed him in the earlier portion of his career as conqueror of Central Japan.

175:2 The wild chive growing among the millet is of course the enemy, the Prince of Tomi and his host; and the gist of the Song is that the Imperial troops will smite and destroy them root and branch. The commentators suppose the simile to have been taken from the fields of millet which Jim-mu's troops planted for their subsistence during the long drawn out campaigns of early days.—The "stem of its root," so ne ga moto, is a curious expression, which is perhaps best accounted for by Moribe's supposition that we have here a pun on Sune ga moto, "Sune's house," Sune being a natural abbreviation of Nagasune, the name of the Prince of Tomi (see Sect. XLIV, Note 28).

175:3 The sense of this Song is: "I shall not forget the bitterness of seeing my brother slain by Prince Nagasune's arrow (see the latter part of Sect. XLIV). The word hazhikami, here rendered ginger in accordance with Motowori's dictum, is taken by Moribe to signify the xanthoxylon. p. 177 "Resounding in the mouth" is a curious phrase here used to express bitterness.

176:4 Motowori thus paraphrases this Song: "As the innumerable turbinidæ [-shells] creep round the great rock, so will I with the myriads of the Imperial host encompass the Prince of Tomi on every side, that there may be no outlet whereby he can escape." The shell here mentioned is a kind of small conch. Kama-kazo no, lit, "of divine wind," is the Pillow-Word for Ise, and is of disputed derivation, as is the word Ise itself. The curious reader should refer to Fujihara no Hikomaro's "Inquiry into the Meaning of the Names of All the Provinces" s.v. for the legend to which the name of Ise and its Pillow-Word were anciently traced and other conjectures on the point, The "great rock" here mentioned is not otherwise known.

176:5 Ye-shiki and Otoshiki. Shiki is the name of a district in the province of Yamato.

176:6 This Song is a request for provisions made by the Emperor to some fishermen, who were working their cormorants along the mountain-streams. Moribe refers it to an incident, not in the war, but in the hunt, and interprets differently the word here, in accordance with its usual meaning and with older authority, rendered "as we fight." He attributes to it the sense of "as we put our shields together," and thinks that the poet may have compared to shields the trunks of the trees. According to this view, the Song should be viewed rather as a joke. It may be mentioned that there is good authority for considering the word tata namete, "placing shields in a row," as a Punning Preface or Pillow-Word for words commencing with i (i being the Root of iru, "to shoot"), so that Moribe's explanation need not involve any tautology. It seems however somewhat far-fetched.—The position of Mount Inasa is uncertain, and the name itself of obscure derivation.

Next: Section L.—Emperor Jim-mu (Part VII.—The Empire Pacified)