Jubokko

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Jubokko (樹木子?, lit. "Vampire Tree") is a youkai tree that appears in many books related to Japanese youkai, including Shigeru Mizuki's works.

It appears in former battlefields where many people have died, and its appearance does not differ that much from ordinary trees. Since it becomes a youkai tree by sucking up large quantities of blood of the dead, it lives on human blood. When a human being happens to be passing by, it captures the victim and, changing its branches into the shape of a tube, sucks the blood out of the victim. The Jubokko that sucks life out of human beings in such way always maintains a fresh appearance. When a Jubokko is cut, blood trickles out. It is said that a Jubokko branch could heal and decontaminate an injured person.[1][2]

Origin[edit]

Folklore scholars such as Kunio Yanagita and Iwao Hino, who wrote works such as "Youkai Stories" and "Vocabulary of Changes in Japanese Youkai", respectively, state in written works about folklore youkai that there is no youkai that became the origin of the Jubokko.[3][4] A group of experts from a group called To Scholar Conference (と学会), which Youkai scholars Natsuhiko Kyogoku and Tada Natsumi, writer Murakami Kenji, and SF writer Yamamoto Hiroshi run as presidents, stated that there is no source of appearance for this youkai tree and that it can be theorized that this youkai is a fictional creature of Mizuki.[5][6][7] Mizuki stated that he has created around 30 different youkai in his comic book GeGeGe no Kitaro, but he did not specify which among the youkai he created in his work are fictional.[8]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Shigeru Mizuki. Picture Collection of Japanese Youkai, Kodansha (Kodansha +α Book Collection), 1984, pg. 226.ISBN 4-062-56049-6.
  2. ^ Kusano Takumi and Tobe Tamio. Japanese Youkai Museum, Shinkigensha, 1994, pg. 166.ISBN 4-883-17240-6.
  3. ^ Kunio Yanagita. Youkai Stories, Kodansha (Kodansha Academic Book Collection), 1977, pg. 196-216.ISBN 4-061-58135-X.
  4. ^ Iwao Hino. Animal Youkai Stories Vol. 2), Chuokoron-Shinsha (Chuko Book Collection) 2006, pg. 221-314.ISBN 4-122-04792-7.
  5. ^ Natsuhiko Kyogoku. Youkai Idiots, Shinchosha (Shincho Book Collection), 2001. pg. 342.ISBN 4-102-90073-X.
  6. ^ Murakami Kenji. Youkai Encyclopedia, Mainichi Shinbunsha, 2000, pg. 188.ISBN 4-620-31428-5.
  7. ^ To Scholar Conference. トンデモ本の世界U, Rakkousha, 2007, pg. 228-229.ISBN 4-903-06314-3.
  8. ^ Shigeru Mizuki. Shogakukan Beginner Encyclopedia Series, vol. 32, Youkai Shogakukan, 1974, pg. 17.ISBN 4-092-20032-3.

See also[edit]