Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Yamato-Takeru Japan's Greatest Epic Hero

Yamato-Takeru Japan's~ 
Greatest Epic Hero~
 As I promised my dear Friends & Followers I would do a post on the saga of the Yamato-Takeru; Japanese greatest epic hero. So for today's post I thought today would be a good day for this great Japanese hero. Originally, named was Ousu. He was the younger of twin sons born to the Emperor Keiko and proved his warlike prowess early on when in a fit of rage he killed his older brother Ousu(Yamato-Takeru).  After killing his older brother the Emperor Ousu, Keiko feared for both his life and his throne. Keiko's father had dispatched him first to Izumo and then to Kumaso, in what is now Kumamoto Prefecture, to put down rebellions, hoping that his recalcitrant son would not come back alive. However, his son the young prince was victorious in every campaign, as much by guile as by his military prowess. Much to his Fathers dismay he surpassed everything, even the rebels that his father sent to have him killed. Much of how he was able to surpass his father's rebels was, during that time Kumaso had disguised himself as a maiden servant and managed to gain entrance to the palace where the Lord of Kumaso was hosting a drinking party. Once the Lord and his guests were thoroughly drunk, Ousu/Kumaso shed his female garments, drew his sword and mortally wounded the rebel chief. Then on his deathbed, Lord Kumaso showed his profound respect for his slayer by renaming him Yamato-takeru; meaning 'Brave One of Yamato'. From that point on it was his only name used!
So When Yamato-takeru returned to the court in triumph, Keiko feared his son more than ever. So this time he sent him on an even more perilous mission; to subdue the Emeshi, who were almost certainly Ainu to kill his son or his father thought! However, in the vicinity of what is Today's Tokyo Bay - Before his son when off to the next mission his father sent him out on, his aunt, Yamato-no-hime, the 'Princess of Yamato' who was also the high Priestess of Amaterasu at the Ise Shrine and the guardian of the Mura-Kumo sword, gave the weapon to her nephew, along with some amulets, to help him in his quest. So now armed with a magical, Excalibur - like sword, Yamato-takeru gained a series of important victories in war, one of which came close to fulfilling his father's fondest wish!  In the course of the battle at Sagami,
in what is now Kanagawa Prefecture, his enemy set fire to the open grassland on which it was being fought. As his opponent had managed to kill Yamato-takeru's horse, he had not means of escaping what appeared to be certain death. However, even thought it appeared there was no escaping death, at this critical juncture in the war, the magical sword that was given by the High Priestess Amaterasu 'Princess of Yamato' wielded itself in front of the hero and mowed down the grass that was fueling the fire. Saving the Hero. Which prompted Yamato-takeru to rechristen it to Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi the 'Grass-Mover-Sword' Which in Japanese literature it still bears this name!
Once the fire had stopped burning down in the grass toward the prince he used one of the
magical amulets his aunts had given him to start a blaze burning in the opposite direction, that was toward his enemy and won the battle. Then Yamato-Takeru married Miyazu-hime, a princess with whom he had fallen in love during an earlier expedition. Well it seems that they would have a happen ending to the tale, and the did live happily together for a time, however the hero of japan had one last task to perform; It was to defeat a monster that lived
on a nearby mountain. So ignoring his dear lovely wife's pleas to not take on the
monster, and to take Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi with him, he only brought with him
the magical sword, and claimed that he could vanquish the creature with his own
bare hands and left for the mountains. So as he descended up the mountains
to faced the monster with his magical sword, he actually did, kill the beast, but with
great cost. It seems soon after the great battle of the monster, his final battle
the great hero fell victim to a fatal illness contracted in the course of his struggle of
the battle.  Even thought the hero fell fatal ill after he saved his kingdom, his Queen and
followers carried the dying hero on a litter to the coast, near the city of Otsu,
where like all good Japanese warriors, ancients or modern warriors are brought. He
died soon after writing his own death poem. And shortly after, his death his soul turned
into a beautiful white bird, which flew off to Yamato. It seems that later when his
tomb was opened it was empty showing to his people that that day
it was truly him that flew off as a white bird into the heavens.
I hope that You all will Enjoy the tale of the Yamato-Takeru
Hero of Japan I love you all very much
YOUR WENDY

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