Product Information & Size Chart
Namazu ni Hyotan Menuki - M005
This made in Japan Menuki features Catfish & calabash. In the Japanese mythology, the Namazu or Onamazu (the giant catfish) is the primary origin of earthquakes. The giant Namazu lives in the mud under the islands of Japan, and he is quarded by the god Kashima (the one that is tied to the Kashima martial tradition) who restrain him with a stone. When Kashima lets his quard fall, or when Kashima attends the annual great meating of the gods at the Izumo Taisha once a year, Namazu trashes and causes violent earthquakes. The legend may finds its origin in a popular belief saying that some fishes and especially the catfish would be able to sense the tiny vibrations preceeding an earthquake and could therefore help prevent damages. The Namazu is very popular in Japanese arts and especially in Ukiyoe (paintings), as well as in modern pop culture, in music (songs) and video games (Zelda, Secret Of Mana, Final Fantasy, etc.). The first mention of Hyotan (gourds or calabash) in the Japanese literature was in the Nihongi, one of the most ancient texts. The Hyotan, with its womb-like nature and the fact that it contain seeds, often represents the female aspect of things, it also represent fertility and luck. It was very rarely used a crest because it was often used to carry Sake (alcohol), however, Hideyoshi Toyotomi, one of the most important historical figure of the Sengoku period took it as one of his signifying crests, adding one gourd to his design after each victory. It lead him to be called "the lord of the golden water gourds", which could be interpreted as "The lord of many lucky outcomes" in some ways. From Hideyoshi, the gourd became the symbol of victory in the Samurai culture.
- Material: Blackened copper plated alloy with gold gilding
Omote: 14.5 mm x 35.5 mm x 4.5 mm
Ura: 13 mm x 36 mm x 4.5 mm