Iwatsukuwake no Mikoto (磐撞別命)

Iwatsukuwake no mikoto (磐撞別命: year of birth and death unknown) was a member of the Imperial family (Royal family), who lived during the early Kofun period (tumulus period) according to the historical documents such as the "Kojiki " (The Records of Ancient Matters) and the "Nihonshoki" (Chronicles of Japan). His name (Iwatsukuwake) was also written as 磐衝別命, 磐撞別皇子, 石衝別王, 伊波都久和気, among others. He was the tenth prince of the eleventh Emperor Suinin, and his mother was the daughter of Yamashirookuni no Fuchi, Kamuhatatobe (written as 綺戸辺 or 弟苅羽田刀弁). He had a maternal half sister, called Futajiirihime no mikoto (written as 両道入姫命 or 石衝毘売命), who became the mother of Emperor Chuai). He had a son named Iwakiwake no mikoto (in addition to 磐城別命, also written as 石城別王 and 伊波智和気), and it is said that he was the ancestor of Hakui no kimi and Mio no kimi. According to the itsubun (unknown or lost writings) of 'Joguki' (Record of the Crown Prince), his fifth generation granddaughter, Furihime no mikoto got married with Hikoushio, and had a son, who later became Emperor Keitai. In the part of 'Tenno Hongi' (Records of emperors) of a text of Japanese histories "Sendai Kujihongi," he (Emperor Keitai) was born between Tanbanomichinoshi no kimi's daughter, Matonohime, and Emperor Suinin, and he was said to be the brother of Inawake no mikoto, and in the part of 'Kokuzo Hongi' (Records of kuni no miyatsuko [local lords]), he was said to be the ancestor of Hakuinokuni no miyatsuko (local lord of the Hakui Province) and Kaganokuni no miyatsuko (local lord of Kaga Province).

His decedents, who lived in Takashima Village, Takashima Country (Haido, Takashima City, Shiga Prefecture), constructed Mio-jinja Shrine, which is Engishikinaisha (shrine enlisted in Engishiki code) and Kensha (prefectural shrine [of prefectures other than Kyoto and Osaka]), to enshrine Iwatsukuwake no mikoto. On the premises of Mio-jinja Shrine, there is the tomb of Iwatsukuwake no mikoto, which was designated as an Imperial Tomb by the Imperial Household Agency in 1917. According to the registration of Mio-jinja Shrine, he came over to that village to learn Amenarumichi Shinto that Sarutahiko no mikoto initiated, and he died there. It is said that his son Prince Iwakiwake no miko buried him in Mt. Mio and constructed the Mio-jinja Shrine.

In addition, Iwatsukuwake no mikoto is enshrined at Prefectural shrine Hakui-jinja Shrine (Engishikinaisha) in Kawara-machi, Hakui City, Ishikawa Prefecture. The origin of Karatoyama-shinji sumo in Hakui City, designated as an intangible cultural property, is said to be traced back to the event in which the people used to celebrate Sumo on the 25th day of the 9th month, the anniversary of Iwatsukuwake no mikoto's death, every year to recall him and his good governance. And the name of the city, 'Hakui,' is said to have come from the following legend of Iwatsukuwake no mikoto. According to the legend, the mikoto shut down an evil bird, who long troubled the people in the territory, and the three dogs he accompanied ate up its wings, and therefore, the place used to be called 'Hakui' (eat wings). However, another theory presents a different version, in which the name is derived from an ancient event related to Okuninushi no mikoto.

Furihime no mikoto, his descendent, was from Echizen Province (Fukui Prefecture), and according to an old document kept at Ominato-jinja Shrine in Sakai City, Fukui Prefecture, Iwatsukuwake no mikoto was also enshrined in the past as an enshrined deity in this shrine.

[Original Japanese]