Junshin (純信)

Junshin (November 27, 1819-1888) was a Japanese Buddhist monk.

His secular name was Kaname. Born on November 27, 1819 in Nonomura, Hewago City, Takaoka County, Tosa Province as the heir of Yosaku EBUCHI, a vassal of the Sagawa family (one theory says he was the second son). When he was serving as the chief priest in Godaisan Chikurin-ji Temple wakibo, he fell in forbidden love with Uma ONO, who was a daughter of an Ikakeya (a craftsman who fixes the metal pans or pots) and was 20 years younger than him. At midnight of May 19, 1855, he ran away with Uma. They went to Awa Province through a back road at the Sasaguchi bansho (guard house) and were staying at hatago (inn with meals) in Konpira, Sanuki Province when they got caught for sekisho yaburi (breaking through or sneaking past a barrier). In September 1855, he was given a criminal sentence to be pilloried at a place to pillory a criminal in the castle town of Kochi-jo Castle, and was expelled from the province. Afterwards, he taught at a Terakoya (temple elementary school during the Edo period) under patronage of Kamekichi in Iyo Province. After death of Kamekichi, he left the place to live in Mikawamura as Keiotokunen osho in his later years, and died there.

The story about Junshin and Uma was made into a Joruri (dramatic narrative chanted to a samisen accompaniment) program, which became popular.

Junshin-do in Ichinono, Tosa City has a poetry monument of him.

[Original Japanese]