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Mizuchi Folklore

In Japanese folklore water gods don’t have separate names, as they are largely referred to as Midzuchi or Water-father, they are very important to the people of Japan because they are the bringer of Rain.

In Japanese folklore, there are several tales involving the Mizuchi, most times they are similar but come with different casts, here are some of my favorite Mizuchi tales, which is quite hilarious, enjoy!

Agatamori and the Mizuchi
In one tale a huge Mizuchi was having fun, devastating the land and scaring the people of Kibi province, it was flooding the River Kahashima, as a result many travellers as well as the people from that province, lost their lives because they drowned.

Agatamori the great warrior heard the cries of the people, he felt their pain and was angered at the antics of the Mizuchi, he decided to do something about it.

One day, Agatamori took some calabashes and threw them into the river, he then challenged the river god, to show he was god by sinking the calabashes and that if it couldn’t, the Mizuchi wasn’t befitting to be called a god and that he Agatamori would slay it.

Angered at such audacity, the Mizuchi rose to the challenge but wanted to be fair to Agatamori and first changed into a deer, before attempting to sink the calabashes. The Mizuchi turned deer kept trying but it couldn’t sink the calabash because it kept floating away.
Agatamori seeing that the Mizuchi turned deer was occupied, seized the opportunity to slay the deer, Agatamori is said to have liberated other provinces, by doing the same thing to the other dragons, that were terrorizing the people.

Koromo no komo and the Mizuchi
In another tale, which is quite the same as the first but with different casts, an Emperor was pondering on how to prevent the overflow of a Northern River, the solution was to build an embankment but it kept giving way.

One night he had a dream, a Mizuchi appeared to him and told him that the final solution to the Northern River, was for the Emperor to sacrifice two men, now it would seem that the powerful dragon, loved the letter "K" because it revealed that the two men must be Koromo no komo and Koha-kubi.

when Koha-kubi heard that he was going to be sacrificed, he sobbed in despair but accepted his fate and plunged himself into the river, it wasn’t long before he drowned but Koromo no komo was a wily one indeed, he was quite calm when he heard the news of his impending death and even took some calabashes, which some believed was an offering to the dragon god.

Koromo no komo got to the river and threw the clabash in but to everyone's surprise, he challenged the water god to try and sink the calabashes, adding that if it couldn’t, then the Mizuchi wasn’t worthy for Koromo no komo to die for.
And just like the first tale, the Mizuchi tried sinking the calabashes and couldn’t thus earning Koromo no komo a lease to life.

The two tales have the same theme, Agatamori and Koromo no komo were Intelligent and crafty to think up a plan to outwit the mighty Mizuchi.

This folklore is very popular in modern Japanese fiction, its being featured in games and even a horror movie!

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