Yamata No Orochi

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Yamata no Orochi

Yamata No OrochiOriginal.jpg

Character Data
Also known as: Orochi
Japanese Name: ヤマタノオロチ
Romanised Name: Yamata no orochi
First Featured in: Kemono Friends (2015 Game)
Yamata No Orochi's Merchandise
Cryptid Data
Classification: Yōkai
Cultural Origin: Japanese
First Recorded Appearance: 680 AD
Animal Based On: Japanese dragon
Read More: Yamata no Orochi
Conservation Status: Uma label.png
Yamata No Orochi Nexon Game

Yamata no Orochi is a cryptid Friend that appeared in the original Kemono Friends mobile game.

Appearance

Yamata no Orochi has slight-green messy hair with two bunches on the sides of her head. As an ornament, she holds her hair with a ribbon that surrounds her head. As most of the Cryptid Friends, her eyes glows completely. On top, she owns a ripped black kimono that reveal her arms and legs, she also bears a giant traditional "Obi" attached behind her. She wears blue rings around her right ankle, her left leg and her wrists. As the original myth, Yamata no Orochi handles black eyed snakes that encircle her body and her hair.

Origins

the Eight-Forked Serpent, also called Yamata no Orochi

Yamata no Orochi is a legendary 8-headed and 8-tailed Japanese dragon. Yamata no Orochi legends are originally recorded in two ancient texts about Japanese mythology and history, the Kojiki and the Nihongi. Without a doubt, the legend goes back even farther into pre-history. In both versions, the myth tell the story of the storm god, Susanoo ages ago. When Susano is in exile from the heavens, he finds a couple and their daughter crying by the river. They explain their sadness to him — that every year, the Orochi comes to devour one of their daughters. This year, they must give up their eigth and final daughter, Kusinada.

Susanoo explained that he was the elder brother of the sun goddess Amaterasu, and offered to slay the beast in return for Kushinada hime’s hand in marriage. The elderly couple agreed, and Susanoo set in motion his plan to defeat the serpent. When the Orochi arrives, he is lured in towards the sake, and dips each of his heads into one of the vats. The drunken beast is now weakened and disoriented, allowing Susano to quickly slay it. He sliced the enormous beast into tiny pieces with his sword. The carnage was so great that the Hi River flowed with blood. When Susanoo had cut the creature down to its fourth tail, his sword shattered into pieces.

Examining the part of Yamata no Orochi’s tail which broke his sword, Susanoo discovered another sword within the creature’s flesh: the legendary katana Kusanagi no Tsurugi. The sword was passed down through the generations in the imperial line of Japan. It is one of the three pieces of imperial regalia, along with the mirror Yata no Kagami and the jewel Yasakani no Magatama. Today, the sword which came from Yamata no Orochi’s tail is said to be safeguarded in the Atsuta Shrine in Nagoya.

Compare the Nihongi description of Yamata no Orochi. "It had an eight-forked head and an eight-forked tail; its eyes were red, like the winter-cherry; and on its back firs and cypresses were growing. As it crawled it extended over a space of eight hills and eight valleys."

These botanical names used to describe this Orochi are akakagachi or hoozuki ("winter cherry or Japanese lantern, Physalis alkekengi"), hikage ("club moss, Lycopodiopsida), hinoki ("Japanese cypress, Chamaecyparis obtusa), and sugi ("Japanese cedar, Cryptomeria").

Trivia

  • The Japanese name orochi 大蛇 derives from Old Japanese woröti, but its etymology is enigmatic. Besides this ancient orochi reading, the kanji 大蛇 are commonly pronounced daija "big snake; large serpent".
  • Japanese scholars have proposed "more than a dozen" orochi < woröti etymologies, while Western linguists have suggested loanwords from Austronesian, Tungusic, and Indo-European languages. The most feasible native etymological proposals are Japanese o- from o 尾 "tail" (which is where Susanoo discovered the sacred sword), ō 大 "big; great", or oro 峰 "peak; summit"; and -chi meaning "god; spirit", cognate with the mizuchi river-dragon.

References

1."Yamata no Orochi". Yokai.com

2."Yamata no Orochi, Japanese Mythology". Ancient-Mythology.

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