Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Jozan Inari Shrine


Matsue has a lot of Inari shrines. This one is in the grounds of the Fumon-in temple about 500 meters from the castle in Matsue. Though still in the grounds of the temple it was officially "separated" from the temple with the shinbutsu bunri of Meiji.


It has the same name as the famous Jozan Inari in the castle grounds, and I would guess was set up as a subsidiary shrine of the former. Incidentally, Jozan can also be read as Shiroyama, and that is the name Lafcadio Hearn used.


Inari is mostly known as a kami of rice, but according to Hearn in the Matsue area it has stronger links to the cult of Fox witchcraft, and the Lords of Matsue were supposed to be masters of the cult, using foxes to send messages to Edo in hours rather than weeks.

The previous shrine I visited this day was also an Inari shrine, as was the next.

I could actually find very little information about this one, except Hearn has a ghost story from this temple.


  1. I think that one of the Inari shrines near the castle grounds is the sponsor of the large boat festival held once every 12 years. Is it one of the ones you have shown on here?

  2. The Horanenya starts at the Jozan Inari in the castle and goes downriver to Adakaya Shrine...

  3. So when is the next Matsue boat festival? Does it begin in the castle moat? I did feel that the foxes at the Jozan Inari shrine were more than just messengers or guardians. They were watching me closely as I wandered around the deserted shrine at dusk. I was careful to leave before dark! They do have a powerful presence.

  4. Hi Nancy
    Next one is in ten years!!