Thursday, February 17, 2011

Kitsune of Saijo Inari

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Kitsune, foxes, are the messengers of the kami Inari, so statues of them can be found at all Inari shrines and temples. Like Komainu, there are a variety of different designs and styles.
All of these photos are from Saijo Inari in Okayama.

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Most kitsune statues are carved in stone, but here there were many large ones of clay. I believe they are known as Bizen style.

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There were a pair of strange looking ones made of concrete!!

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Often the kitsune will have a scroll in its mouth. The scroll contains wisdom.

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Occasionally there will also be komainu as well as kitsune.

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Small ceramic kitsune are left as offerings, along with sake (omiki)

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