Inishikiiribiko no mikoto (五十瓊敷入彦命)

Inishikiiribiko no mikoto (五十瓊敷入彦命) was a member of the Imperial family (Royal family), who is said to have been lived in the Kofun period (tumulus period), according to "Kojiki " (The Record of Ancient Matters) and "Nihonshoki" (Chronicles of Japan). He was the second Imperial Prince of Emperor Suinin (the first Imperial Prince was Homutsuwake no mikoto), the son born between Emperor Suinin and Sahohime). He was also mentioned as Iinishiki no mikoto (五十瓊敷命) and Inishikinoirohiko no mikoto (印色入日子命) ("Kojiki").


Based on the chronology employed in the Nihonshoki.

Emperor Suinin had the Empress called Sahohime. After the Empress died together with her older brother Sahohiko in the rebellion provoked by himself, the Emperor took Hibasuhime as the second Empress, and the first son Inishikiiribiko no mikoto, and the second son Otarashihiko no mikoto (Emperor Keiko) were born.

In the 30th year of Emperor Suinin's reign, when the Emperor asked each one of these two brothers what they wanted, the older brother Inishikiiribiko no mikoto wanted 'bows and arrows' and the smaller brother Otarashihiko no mikoto wanted the 'Imperial Throne,' and in this way, it was decided that Otarashihiko no mikoto would be the successor to Emperor Suinin.

In the ninth month of the 35th year of the same reign, Inishikiiribiko no mikoto was dispatched to Kawachi Province and he developed many irrigation ponds and ditches, including Takashi no ike Pond and Chinu no ike Pond. It is said that he also promoted agricultural development, traveling extensively from province to province, in order to stabilize people's livelihood, and therefore, he was highly respected by the people.

In the tenth month of the 39th year of the same reign, he made one thousand swords at Utonokawakami no miya Shrine, which was possibly in the vicinity of present Jinenda, Hannan City, Osaka Prefecture). And he dedicated them to Ishigami-jinja Shrine. Emperor Suinin ordered Inishikiiribiko no mikoto to take control over the sacred treasures of the Shrine.

In the second month of the 87th year of the reign, he appointed Onakatsuhime to manage the sacred treasures for his old age. Onakatsuhime granted the sacred treasures to MONONOBE no Tochine and made him take care of them. This is said to have been the reason why the sacred treasures of Ishigami-jinja Shrine were under the custody of the Mononobe clan.

Legend about his end

According to the legend handed down at Inaba-jinja Shrine in Gifu City, Gifu Prefecture, Inishikiiribiko no mikoto, once dominated Oshu Province on the Imperial edict, however, as Governor of Mutsu Province, Toyomasu, who accompanied him to Oshu, became jealous of Inishikiiribiko no mikoto's success and informed the Imperial court of a false charge that Inishikiiribiko no mikoto was plotting a treason, and thus, Inishikiiribiko no mikoto was accused as an Imperial enemy and attacked to death there. When his wife, Nunoshihime no mikoto knew her husband's death, she went down to Oshu, leaving the capital, and single-mindedly longed for her late husband, devoting herself in prayer to console the spirit of the mikoto until she died. Inishikiiribiko no mikoto is highly respected even today as the shusaijin (main enshrined deities) of Inama-jinja Shrine.

For your reference, it should be noted that according to "Tensho" (a chronological history of Japan), which is said to have been a falsified record in the Edo Period, his date of birth was the 24th day of the 2nd month of the 93rd year of Emperor Suinin's reign (old lunar calendar). However in this book there is no description related to the engi (writing about the history) mentioned above.

According to the legend transmitted at Ishigami-jinja Shrine, Inishikiiribiko no mikoto was living next to Ishigami-jinja Shrine, in the premises situated to the southeast of the haiden (hall of worship), and when he got senile, he wanted his younger sister Onakatsuhime to take the charge of the religious service. However, she refused his offer saying that she would not like to climb up to a higher floor (elevated bridge) because she was just a woman; then he had no idea other than appointing MONONOBE no Tochine, who was in the position of Omuraji (one of the important official ranks of Yamato Imperial Court, representing the local ruling lords called Muraji) (the religious service referred to here might have included the task of getting in and out the sacred treasures). About the chronicle of achievements mentioned above, the same episode about him is found in the article of the second month of the 87th year of Emperor Suinin's reign. It is said that he died of old age.


Udohaka Tomb is said to be his mausoleum. (it is also called Tannowa nisanzai Tomb).

It is located in Tannowa, Misaki-cho, Sennan-gun, Osaka Prefecture. It is a big-scale keyhole-shaped mound with the total length of 200m, which was constructed in the latter half of the 5th century. Although it is said to be Inishiki no mikoto's tomb, there is no evidence and it is currently under the control of the Imperial Household Agency. The nearest station is Tannowa Station on the Nankai Main Line.

[Original Japanese]