Episode 18: The God of Smallpox (Housougami)

Episode 18: The God of Smallpox (Housougami)

Welcome to May’s Uncanny Japan. In this episode I talk about the God of Smallpox (housougami/疱瘡神). Come listen to the beliefs in this fearsome god and how dogs and the color red kept him at bay.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     In the above picture you can see a child sick with smallpox and all the talismans

placed around him for protection. Notice all the red and the taisha, too. 

The above photo is of an aka-e (red picture) of a taisha (sea bream car).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Above is the samurai Tametomo scaring away the God of Smallpox.

Notes: The intro/outro music of Uncanny Japan is a song by Christiaan Virant (“Yi Gui” from Ting Shuo).  The whole album is just gorgeous as it everything else by FM3.

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