WKD - Ebisu

[ . BACK to Worldkigo TOP . ]
. Legends about Ebisu .

Ebisu えびす 恵比寿 

Clay Doll of Ebisu with Daruma

Nakano Clay Doll / Hight 37 cm, width 20 cm

Ebisu is one of the seven gods of good luck.
The god of fishermen and good fortune, the smiling and bearded Ebisu is most often depicted with a fishing rod in his right hand, with a large red sea bream (tai) dangling from the line or tucked under his left arm. Sometimes he is also carrying a folding fan, and is often wearing a two-pointed hat (I'm not sure what these latter two objects mean, although the folding fan was waved by the emperor in a certain direction to indicate either acceptance or rejection of a request during the emperor's audiences with nobles and commoners).

In a nation very fond of fish, Ebisu is not surprisingly one of the most popular of the seven lucky gods. Ebisu is also the only deity among the seven to originate in Japan. Today he symbolizes not only safe sailing and plentiful fishing, but business prosperity for merchants in all trades. In carvings and artwork, Ebisu and Daikoku are often shown together, for Ebisu is said to be the son of Daikoku.
Read more about him here:
... Mark Schumacher

Ebisu holding a Daruma, both being symbols of Good Luck! What a happy combination!
To get such a present for the new year must bring a lot of pleasure.

There are other papermachee dolls of Ebisu and Daikoku, featured like a Daruma Doll.

Click HERE to see more of Ebisu and his companion Daikoku !

More about Ebisu and related festivals
. Ebisu and the Seven Gods of Good Luck .

Ebisu might be carrying a
. koi 鯉 carp .
He is venerated at the Ebisu Shrine 大前神社 Osaki Ebisu Jinja.


Ebisu is native to Japan, his name in the Shinto Pantheon is
Kotoshiro-nushi-no-kami 事代主の神 

source : pauch.com/kss Kyoto

御穂津姫と事代主神 Mihotsu Hime and Kotoshironushi no Kami
(Miho Jinja 美保神社)

. Miho Jinja 美保神社 and Mihotsu Hime .

KOTOSHIRONUSHI (aka Ebisu) 事代主
- Read source : Mark Schumacher -

- - - - - Ebisu seen as
. Hiruko no mikoto 蛭子命 .
Hiruko Sha 蛭子社 Hiruko Shrine, Nagasaki


Since Ebisu is the Deity venerated by fishermen, most of his shrines are near a beach.

Ebisu jinja 蛭子神社 Ebisu Shrine / Hiruko Shrine

Ebisu Shrine in Mie, a sub-shrine in the compound of 鳥出神社 Toride Jinja.
2 Chome-16-4 Tomida, Yokkaichi, Mie Prefecture 四日市市 冨田町

During the Tenpyo time of the Heian period (729 - 749) the fisherman at 富田浜 Tomida beach had a great catch and were all exited. But the joy did not last long. For two, three days, not even a small fish was caught. On the fouth day say saw a light shimmering in the water and went out to catch it in the hope to make another great catch. But this time it was not a fish, but a statue of the deity Ebisu / Hiruko.
They build the shrine in his honor there and enjoyed more good catches after that.
Festival for Hiruko 蛭子祭 : 20th day of the 6th lunar month   

- reference : Ebisu Jinja -

source : yukio on facebook
蛭子社の社殿の瓦は恵比寿 Roof tile with Ebisu


In Hakata, Ebisu is celebrated on the New Year

1月8日 初恵比須  First Ebisu on the eighth
9日 宵恵比須  Night before the Real Ebisu
10日 本恵比須  REAL Toka Ebisu on the tenth
11日 残り恵比寿 Day after the Real Ebisu


- Nagasaki, Maruyama- Shrine Umezono Tenmangu 梅園天満宮
. Ebisu ishi 恵比須石 Ebisu Rock / Ebisu Stone .
talisman for egao bijin 笑顔美人 for a smiling beautiful face


Ebisu riding a Tai fish
. Nishio tsuchi ningyoo 西尾土人形 Nishio Clay Dolls .
Nagoya Aichi


Ebisu hariko えびす 張子 papermachee doll
. . . CLICK here for papermachee doll Photos !

Ebisu dorei えびす 土鈴 clay bell
. . . CLICK here for Photos !

Ebisu ema えびす 絵馬 votive plaque
. . . CLICK here for Photos !

Amulets for a big catch

. Tsuri yuki anzen 釣行安全 safety when fishing .

Shichi-Fukujin 七福神 Seven Gods of Good Luck
. Amulets and Talismans from Japan . 


The God of the Mountain and the Rice Fields
Yama no kami 山の神, ta no kami 田の神
In some areas, Ta no Kami is venerated as Ebisu.

. Ebisu venerated at Mishima Shrine .
三嶋大社、三島大社 Mishima Taisha, Shizuoka


kosodate Ebisu 子育て(子授け)恵比須 child-protecting Ebisu

Saga prefecture, Hakusan 佐賀県佐賀市白山 1-3-2 
- source : taishi445.blog136.fc2.com

. Amulets for Child Protection 安産子育 .


......................... HAIKU

Ebisu 夷 恵比寿 恵比須 えびす、エビス

Kigo for Early Winter

Ebisu Ceremony Group, Ebisu-koo 恵比寿講、夷講
..... Ebisu Matsuri, 夷子祭

A "Ceremony Group" koo 講 was a group in the neighbourhood with the same religious intention of celebrating ... for example, this God Ebisu. The most famous was possibly the Ceremony Group for Mt. Fuji, Fukikoo, where the members would collect money so that some of the group could go to the annual pilgrimmage to Mt. Fuji. But this calls for a different entry!

According to the Asian Lunar calender, the celebration was on October 20, but lately it is celebrated on any of the months in winter, with regional differences all over Japan. The God Ebisu 夷神, one of the seven gods of good luck, was identical with the God of the Mountains and the Fields in rural Japan. On this Ebisu Festival Day, Fish, Grains and Sweets were offered to the local statues of Ebisu.

Even nowadaya many stores hold a great bargain sale on the three days around the Ebisu Ceremonies.

恵比寿 夷神(本覚寺)


. Matsuo Basho 松尾芭蕉 - Archives of the WKD .

Ebisu-koo su-uri ni hakama kisenikeri

Ebisu Festival:
vinegar salesman decked out
in formal wear

trans. Barnhill

. Formal trouser-skirt (hakama 袴) .
with more hokku by Basho

- - - - -

furi uri no gan aware nari Ebisu koo / furiuri

the pathos of
the birdseller's geese:
Festival of Ebisu

Tr. Barnhill

On the 20th day of the tenth lunar month

. furiuri, furi-uri 振売 peddlers in Edo .

- - - - -

toshi wa hito ni torasete itsumo waka Ebisu

people have
always to get older -
ever-young Ebisu

Tr. Gabi Greve

Basho age 23

Amulets with the picture of Ebisu were sold on the first day of the New Year in Osaka. People would pin them at the entrance of their home for good luck.
In the Edo period, everyone became one year older on the first day of the New Year. Individual birthdays were not celebrated.

. Matsuo Basho 松尾芭蕉 - Archives of the WKD .

source : www.wakaebis.co.jp

Festive sake ricewine WAKA EBISU with this hokku by Basho as its motive.
It contains sprinkles of gold foil.


"During this annual festival held on January 9, 10, and 11, in Osaka many people come to pay respects to Ebisu, the patron deity of business. As Osaka has been traditionally known as the merchant capital of Japan, the significance of the Toka Ebisu Festival resonates especially strong with the people of the city. Throughout the three-day Festival, hundreds of thousands of people come to worship at the shrine and pray to Ebisu, affectionately called "Ebessan" by Osakans."

"A million people pass through the sixth century Imamiya-Ebisu Shrine during the three-day January festival to pray to Ebisu (or informally, "Ebessan"), the god of business and wealth. The shrine maidens sell lucky bamboo fronds (fukusasa) loaded with lucky charms and coin talismans. Their offer is, "Buy a frond and your business will prosper." It's certainly a profitable time for the frond sellers. The highlight of the festival is "Toka Ebisu" (10th Ebisu) when colourful palanquins bear geisha and other celebrities through the lantern-lit streets."

There is also an Ebisu Festival held in Kyoto:

"During the Hatsuka Ebisu Festival, business people flock to Ebisu-jinja Shrine to buy fukuzasa, branches of bamboo festooned with miniature treasure ships, rice bales, gold coins and other lucky charms. This festival celebrates Ebisu, one of the Seven Gods of Good Fortune and the patron deity of merchants.

"During the festival ebisu-bayashi music wafts through the air of the shrine and knives produced by the Oima school, well known among cooks, are put on display.

"The festival originated in the Edo period, when Kyoto merchants returning from business trips to Edo would visit this shrine to give thanks for a successful journey.
It is held only in Kyoto on October 19, 20, and 21."


Ebisu Bento
source : busireso.com/lunch-photo


Kigo for the New Year

Ebisu Doll Show, Ebisu oroshi 夷おろし
..... Ebisu kaki 夷かき
Small shows by the roadside where quite popular in Edo. Little paper dolls or clay dolls were moved on a box, a lucky story was told and afterward the performer got a bit of money.

ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo

"Young Ebisu", waka Ebisu 若夷 わかえびす、 若えびす
Welcoming Young Ebisu, waka Ebisu mukae 若夷迎

After praying to a statue of God Ebisu 夷神, people would walk around on the morning of January first with little clay dolls or paper slips with Ebisu paintings, shouting "Young Ebisu, young Ebisu". The buyer could put the doll on his God's Shelf (kamidana 神棚) and pray for his home. Putting a doll or paper by the side of the entrance door was another possibility to lure good luck to the home. If you do that, you would not age yourself for one year ... or so they said !

toshi ya hito ni toraete itsumo waka Ebisu

another year !
others get older but he stays
always a Young Ebisu

(Tr. Gabi Greve)

Matsuo Basho


Kigo for the New Year

Ebisu, Ceremony for the God of Wealth and Prosperity

..... Kairaishi 傀儡師, 傀儡, 夷廻し,木傀廻し puppeteer
..... Visiting the Seven Gods of Good Luck, shichi fukujin mairi 七福神詣
..... 七福詣, 福神詣, 福神巡り, 福詣
Palanquin of fortunes, hoikago宝恵駕, hoekago 宝恵駕籠*
Ebisu palanquin, Ebisu kago 戎籠(えびすかご)
Palanquin for Fukusuke, Fukusuke kago 福助駕(ふくすけかご)

Itsuka Ebisu 五日戎 (いつかえびす) Ebisu on January 5

Hatsuka Ebisu 二十日戎 (はつかえびす) Ebisu on January 20
hatsuka Ebisu matsuri 二十日戎祭(はつかえびすまつり)
Ebisu Ceremonies in Edo and the Kanto area

Tooka Ebisu 十日戎 (とおかえびす) Ebisu on January 10
(in the Kansai area)
hatsu Ebisu 初戎(はつえびす)first Ebisu rituals
yoi Ebisu 宵戎(よいえびす),
Ebisu matsuri 戎祭(えびすまつり)Ebisu festival
nokori Ebisu 残り戎(のこりえびす)"left over Ebisu"
nokorifuku, nokori fuku 残り福(のこりふく)

..... fukusasa 福笹(ふくささ)lucky bamboo grass
Ebisu sasa 戎笹(えびすささ)
fukuame, fuku ame 福飴(ふくあめ)"sweets for good luck"
kichoo 吉兆(きっちょう)"good omen"

Nishinomiya no igomori 西宮の居籠 (にしのみやのいごもり)
recluse at Nishinomiya
..... igomori 居籠(いごもり)
In Nishinomiya town, Hyogo prefecture, at the shrine Ebisu Jinja.
In the night of January 9/10.
The main deity from Ebish shrine is brought to the shrine Hirota Jinja 広田神社.
People who see the procession will be blessed in the coming year.

. Daikoku and Ebisu 大黒と恵比寿 art motives .



Kigo for the Late Autumn

. Absolving of lies 誓文払 seimonbarai .
..... Ebisugire, Ebisu gire 夷切れ(えびすぎれ)
at shrine Kanjaden 官者殿 in Kyoto


Kobayashi Issa 小林一茶

uramachi ya binboo tokuri no Ebisu koo

back alley--
a poor sake bottle
for the God of Wealth

kado no matsu oroshi ya ebisu no tamage-beshi

down comes my New Year's pine--
let the God of Wealth
be shocked!

Honchoo ya Ebisu no meshi no yoko-gasumi

Old Quarter--
food for the God of Wealth
in mist

Issa (Tr. David Lanoue)

There were so many food offering to Ebisu-san that the large volume of mist occurred by the food and formed the mist that drifted with wind.This symbolized the prosperity of the Ebisu-shrine as well as Honcho of Nihon bashi in the center commercial district in Edo.
Nakamura Sakuo


Laughing, Lucky Laugh (fuku warai)
First laugh (hatsu warai). first cry (hatsu naki).
Celebrating Ebisu, Good of Good Luck.


Umi no sachi : food treasures of the sea 海の幸
and Ebisu sama

. Ebisu Beer エビスビール / 恵比寿ビール Yebisu Beer .

CLICK for more photos
The great festival of Ebisu "Ebessan"

In Nishinomiya, Hiroshima prefecture

On January 8, a large tuna fish is offered to the deity. The visitore place their offering money coins on the fish and pray for good business.
This festival started in 1970.
. . . CLICK here for Photos !


Rein japanische Gottheit. E bedeutet Liebe, BI bedeutet Schönheit und SU bedeutet alltägliche Notwendigkeiten. Ältester Sohn (Hiruko) der japanischen Gottheiten Izanagi und Izanami no Mikoto. Als Kind auf einem Schilfboot ausgesetzt, kommt in der Gegend von Osaka an Land; daher auch Gottheit der Fischer.

Im buddhistischen Pantheon als Inkarnation der Kannon, vom Weltberg des Südens, Fudaraku, kommend.
Zusammen mit Daikokuten als Doppelfigur.

Mit Entenmuschel-Mütze; in Jagdgewändern.
Meist rundes, lächelndes Gesicht.
Mit großem Fisch und langer Angelrute.

Buddhastatuen ... Who is Who
Buddhistische Kultgegenstände Japans


. Legends about Ebisu .

. Ebisu and the Seven Gods of Good Luck .

. Shichifukujin 七福神 amulets and toys .

- #ebisu #hiruko -


Gabi Greve said...

Old Quarter--
food for the God of Wealth
in mist

honchoo ya Ebisu no meshi no yoko-gasumi


by Issa, 1815

On the 20th day of Tenth Month (old calendar), a festival was held in honor of Ebisu, god of wealth.
In the haiku, food offerings to the god meet a bank of mist. The "Old Quarter" was in the Nihonbashi section of Edo, today's Tokyo;
see Maruyama Kazuhiko, Issa haiku shuu (Tokyo: Iwanami Shoten, 1990; rpt. 1993) 213, note 1113.

Tr. David Lanoue / http://cat.xula.edu/issa/

Unknown said...

Ebisu no meshi, what is it?
what kind of rice or food it is?
Yoko-gasumi, what is it?
side mist?? what is side mist?
The mist does lay beside?

I feel this Ku would be probably very attractive, but I could not understand how was Issa's situation.



Gabi Greve - Issa said...

first snow --
beggar at the door early
calls me "God Ebisu"

hatsu-yuki ya asa-ebisu suru kado kojiki

Kobayashi Issa

comment by Chris Drake is HERE

Gabi Greve - Issa said...

even pigeons in line
entering, leaving a feast
to the god of wealth

ebisu-kou deiri no hato mo narabikeri

Kobayashi Issa

Read a comment by Chris Drake

Gabi Greve - WKD said...

shooka sawagi arite Imamiya Yoi Ebisu

the fuss about
a small fire - Night Festival
at Imamiya Ebisu shrine

Gotoo Onihashi (Kikyoo) 後藤鬼橋 Goto Onihashi

Imamiya shrines

Gabi Greve - Darumapedia said...

Daikoku Kumade 大黒福熊手
lucky rake
Ebisu Nishinomiya Jinja  えびす西宮神社

Gabi Greve - Darumapedia said...

shrine Miho Jinja 美保神社, Shimane
島根県松江市美保関町美保関 608, Matsue city, Miho town

Miho Shrine is located in the small fishing village of Mihonoseki, and the main deity, Kotoshiro-nushi is worshipped as the God of good fortune, fishing and safety at sea.
The deity is the child of Okuni-nushi and is also known as Ebisu.

Ebisu here is known for as
Narimono no Kamisama 鳴り物の神様 "Deity of Instruments"

This is the headquarter of the Kotoshirunushi Ebisu shrines 事代主神系えびす, with more than 3000 sub-shrines.

Ebisu as
Kotoshironushi 事代主命 and his wife Mihotsu Hime no Mikoto 三穂津姫命

Gabi Greve - Darumapedia said...

Koshikiiwa Jinja 越木岩神社 Koshikiiwa Shrine

5-4 Koshikiiwacho, Nishinomiya, Hyogo

The 10 meter-high Koshiki-iwa Rock is the shrine's deity, and has been believed to be the god of pregnancy and safe delivery since a long time ago. The "great god Ebisu" of Nishinomiya Jinja shrine is also enshrined here, so it has been called "the northern Ebisu".

Gabi Greve - Kappa said...

Kappa commanded by Ebisu (god of the ocean)

- KAPPA - 河童 / 合羽 / かっぱ / カッパ - Art Motives -

Gabi Greve - Darumapedia said...

. Gunma 群馬県 .................................

On the day of the specal Ebisu ceremonies エビス講, you are not to wear Tabi to walk to the temple.

. Ebisu えびす / エビス 恵比寿  .
エビス講 Ebisu Ceremony Group
Ebisu is one of the seven gods of good luck.


Gabi Greve said...

Legend about
Ta no Kami, Tanokami 田の神 God of the Rice Fields
and inoko 亥の子 / イノコ / 亥子 the "young wild boar"

Niigata 新潟県 .....
南魚沼郡 Minami-Uonuma district 六日町 Muika machi

留守居の神 rusui no kami,恵比寿様 Ebisu sama,便所の神 benjo no kami
On the day of Inoko people prepare Inoko dango 亥の子ダンゴ round rice dumplings.
When most of the Kami left for Izumo, only Ebisu and the Benjo no Kami of the Toilet stayed back in the homes. They were the rusui no kami, Gods keeping back home. For them, the round rice dumplings were an offering. Also called
inokori dango 居残りダンゴ round rice dumplings for those left behind.

. kannazuki, kaminazuki 神無月 かんなづき "Gods are absent" month .
The tenth lunar month (now November), after the harvest when the Japanese gods had done their duty, they left their local shrines for a bit of a vacation and went to the Izumo Shrine..


Gabi Greve said...

Tokyo, Shibuya Ebisu 恵比寿 Ebisu district
Shibuya 渋谷区, 恵比寿一丁目 - 四丁目 from first to fourth sub-district

The beer factory Yebisu Sapporo Beer サッポロビールのビール工場 - ヱビスビール was located here since 1906.
In 1994 ti turned to
恵比寿ガーデンプレイス Yebisu Garden Palace
Shibuya-ku, 恵比寿 4 Chome−20
a shopping, restaurant and entertainment area.


Gabi Greve said...

Legend from Yamanashi
Kitatsuru district 北都留郡 .....

In the hamlet 橋立 Hashitate they have Ebesu ko エベス講 a yearly ritual for the Ebisu followers, there they knock down poles.
This is done because on the 21st day of the first lunar month Yamanokami is shooting arrows and the poles might be hit.
In Kanazawa they celebrate from the 17th to the 21stt day of the first lunar month. On these days nobody goes to the forest. If someone goes to the forest, he will be hit by an arrow or wounded by an ax. So forest workers sty in a home and eat and drink.

Gabi Greve said...

hatsuka 二十日 と伝説 Legends about day 20 of a month
and Ebisu sama.

Gabi Greve said...

Legend from Kyoto 京都府
亀岡市 Kameoka city 大井町 Oi town

. shinshi 神使 messenger of god, divine messenger .
At 丹波国並河村 the village Namikawa in the old Tanba province the messenger of the deity Koi Daimyojin 鯉大明神 is koi 鯉 the carp. Every month he comes downriver of the 大堰川 Oigawa to be the messenger of 松尾明神 Matsuo Myojin. The parishioners of this Shinto shrine never eat carp. If they try, they get painful swellings in the mouth.

Gabi Greve said...

美保神社 Miho Jinja, Shimane
The head shrine of Ebisu, a god with deep connections to the sea and music

Miho Shrine is the head shrine of more than 3,000 Ebisu shrines nationwide.