Hosuseri no Mikoto (火須勢理命)

Hosuseri no Mikoto is a Shinto god in Japanese mythology. He appears only in the Kojiki (the Records of Ancient Matters).

Hosuseri no Mikoto was a child of the god Ninigi and the goddess Konohanasakuyabime. According to the section on the tenson-korin (the descent to earth of the Sun-Goddess's grandson), Konohanasakuyabime became pregnant after spending only one night with Ninigi, who thought the father of the babies was a kunitsukami (Earthly God), and Hosuseri no Mikoto was a second child out of the three gods, who were born in a fire to eliminate Ninigi's suspicion. He was named 'Hosuseri' because he was born while the fire was raging (one of the Chinese characters in his name means "fire," and another means "force"). His elder brother is called Hoderi and his younger brother is called Hoori.

Like his two brothers, it is believed that his name was originally derived from the Chinese character for an ear of a grain, and the character for fire was assigned later in accordance to his birth story, or conversely, the birth story was created after people started to use the character for fire for his name.
Suseri, which is also part of the name of other gods such as Suseribime, means 'proceed,' and so the name 'Hosuseri' means 'progress of the growth of an ear of rice.'

Hosuseri no Mikoto appears in his birth scene only and then is not mentioned again. Some people think that having a god who does nothing keeps the balance of power between two gods who have opposite characteristics, Umisachihiko (Hoderi no Mikoto) and Yamasachihiko (Hoori no Mikoto). The story about Amenominakanushi no Kami (a god ruling the center of heaven) and the story about Tsukuyomi (a god of the moon) have the same structure.

In the "Nihonshoki" (the Chronicles of Japan), Hosusori no Mikoto (written as 火闌降命 in Japanese) appears in the main account and the eighth issho (addendum), and Hosuseri no Mikoto (written as 火酢芹命 in Japanese) appears in the second, the third, and the sixth issho. The main account explains that Hosusori no Mikoto is the ancestor of the Hayato (an ancient tribe in Kyushu), and the eighth issho describes the exploits that are regarded as Hoderi no Mikoto's in the "Kojiki". In addition, the second and the sixth issho say that Hosuseri no Mikoto is the eldest child. Thus it is considered that the story of Hoderi no Mikoto in the "Kojiki" was originally a legend concerning Hosusori no Mikoto (or Hosuseri no Mikoto), with the compilers of the "Kojiki" creating a god named Hoderi no Mikoto and transferring Hosusori no Mikoto's exploits over to Hoderi no Mikoto.

[Original Japanese]