Jinmenju

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The jinmenju as illustrated by Toriyama Sekien

Jinmenju or Ninmenju (人面樹, human-face tree) is a strange tree illustrated in Toriyama Sekien's Konjaku Hyakki Shūi.

Description in folklore[edit]

Legend has it that the tree grows "in remote mountain valleys in China".

The Jinmenju's fruit appear to be "human heads. The faces are always smiling or laughing, even as they fall from their branch."

In popular culture[edit]

  • In the InuYasha anime series, episodes 57 and 58 revolve around Tokajin, a sage who feeds humans to a demonic tree with human-faced fruit in exchange for the immortality the fruit can grant.
  • In the music video for Dir en grey's song "Obscure", a woman resembling a geisha is seen taking a baby's head from a tree.
  • The Pokémon Exeggutor may have been based on the Jinmenju.
  • In several Castlevania games, there is a monster called "corpseweed" that appears as a tall plant with a head dangling from the end.
  • In the Sega Saturn port of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night there is a new enemy Jinmenju which looks almost exactly like a jinmenju.
  • In the game Tomba! 2: The Evil Swine Return, there are fruits in Donglin Forest that either cry or laugh.
  • In the film Dead and Deader, there is an enemy tree-like creature, called Sun, with human faces, which may be inspired by this creature.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]