Kagu-tsuchi

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Kagu-tsuchi or Kagutsuchi (カグツチ?), referred to as Hinokagatsuchi (火之迦具土?) in the Kojiki, and Kagutsuchi (軻遇突智?) or Homusubi (火産霊?) in the Nihon-Shoki, is the kami of fire in Japanese mythology.

Mythology[edit]

Kagu-tsuchi's birth burned his mother Izanami, causing her death. His father Izanagi, in his grief, beheaded Kagu-tsuchi with his sword, Ame no Ohabari (天之尾羽張), and cut his body into eight pieces, which became eight volcanoes. The blood that dripped off Izanagi's sword created a number of deities, including the sea god Watatsumi and rain god Kuraokami.

Kagu-tsuchi's birth, in Japanese mythology, comes at the end of the creation of the world and marks the beginning of death.[1] In the Engishiki, a source which contains the myth, Izanami, in her death throes, bears the water god Mizuhame, instructing her to pacify Kagu-tsuchi if he should become violent. This story also contains references to traditional fire-fighting tools: gourds for carrying water and wet clay and water reeds for smothering fires.[1]

Name[edit]

The name Kagutsuchi was originally a compound phrase, consisting of kagu, an Old Japanese root verb meaning "to shine"; tsu, the Old Japanese possessive particle; and chi, an Old Japanese root meaning "force, power".[2]

Worship[edit]

Kagutsuchi was the patron deity of blacksmiths and ceramic workers. He is worshipped in several shrines, one of which is Atago Shrine, near Kyoto. [3]

Popular culture[edit]

  • In the anime Fairy Tail, a character named Zancrow uses the Flame God Slayer Magic, and has an attack named after Kagu-tsuchi.
  • In the anime Mai-HiME, Mai's Child is based upon Kagu-tsuchi.
  • In the anime Naruto: Shippuden, one of the main characters called Sasuke Uchiha is shown to have the ability to manipulate the black flames of Amaterasu into various weapons. This is referred to as Blaze release: Kagu-tsuchi, which refers to the fire god.
  • In the anime Ao No Exorcist, the hometown to several of the characters is Kyoto, where a powerful sword was made from long ago by, and had to do with Kagu-Tsuchi.
  • In the video game series BlazBlue, the main setting of the first two games is the 13th Hierarchical City of Kagutsuchi.
  • In the video game series Brave Frontier, Kagatsuchi is a fire-based battle unit. He's in the form of a centaur, and is described as "a disastrous beast."
  • In the manga Rurouni Kenshin, the main antagonist of the Kyoto Arc, Makoto Shishio, uses a technique called "The Final Secret Sword: Kagutsuchi" as a last resort "trump card", bringing down a cyclone of flames that his sword can produce at his enemy.
  • In the video game Persona 4 Arena Ultimax, Hino-Kagutsuchi is featured as a boss.
  • In Atlus' 2003 RPG, "Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne", Kagu-tsuchi (spelled "Kagutsuchi" in-game) is the central divine force that must be defeated in order to usher in the rebirth of the world in accordance with the philosophy with which the main character has aligned himself.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Ashkenazy, Michael. Handbook of Japanese Mythology. Santa Barbara, California: ABC-Clio, 2003. 186
  2. ^ Kokugo Dai Jiten, Revised Edition (国語大辞典(新装版)?) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan, 1988
  3. ^ "Kagutsuchi, Japanese Fire God, The Fiery God of Purification by Flame". God Checker.com. Retrieved 27 August 2016. 

References[edit]

  • Ashkenazy, Michael. Handbook of Japanese Mythology. Santa Barbara, California: ABC-Clio, 2003.
  • Bock, Felicia G., trans. Engi-shiki: Procedures of the Engi Era. ASU Center for Asian Studies (Occasional Paper #17).

External links[edit]