Thursday, January 21, 2016

Kibune-gu Shrine, Iizuka


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Pronounced Kifune but written Kibune, this small local shrine in the outskirts of Iizuka is a branch of the famous Kifune shrine north of Kyoto.

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The nameplate on the fairly new torii names it as Kibune-gu, and this is the first time I have seen gu used for a Kibune shrine. Gu is often applied to Hachiman and Tenjin shrines, Hachimangu and Tenmangu, and shrine terminology has become somewhat confusing since the establishment of Shinto in the mid 19th Century. Commonly when I am asking locals about a shrine they will use the term Omiya.

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Kifune shrines enshrine two water kami, Takaokami and Kuraokami, associated strongly with rainfall. It was donating horses to the shrine in the case of drought or flood that traditiona has it led to Ema, votive plaques.

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There were numerous small secondary shrines in the grounds, some no doubt local Aragami, but there was no information signboard so I cannot be specific.

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