Iwazononiimasu-takumushitama-jinja Shrine (石園座多久虫玉神社)

Iwazononiimasu-takumushitama-jinja Shrine is located in Katashio-cho, Yamatotakada City, Nara Prefecture. It is a Shikinai-sha (shrine listed in the Engishiki laws) and its old shrine ranking is kensha (prefectural shrine [of prefectures other than Kyoto and Osaka]). It is commonly known as Ryuogu, and many local residents have strong belief in the spirit of the shrine.

In addition, it has been said that Omiwa-jinja Shrine is a head of a dragon, this shrine is its body, and Nagao-jinja Shrine in Taima-cho is its tail as these shrines line the Yokooji Road.

Enshrined Deities
Taketamayorihiko no Mikoto and Taketamayoribime no Mikoto are shusaijin (main enshrined deities) and Toyotamahiko no Mikado and Toyotama-hime are enshrined as associate gods.

Taketamayorihiko no Mikoto is said to be the same as Kamotamayorihiko no Mikoto, who is enshrined at Hajio-sha Shrine, a sessha (auxiliary shrine [dedicated to a deity close-related to that of a main shrine]) of Kamowakeikazuchi-jinja Shrine (also known as Kamigamo-jinja Shrine), and Kikanowakamiya Shrine, a sessha of Hiyoshi-taisha Shrine.

However, the original enshrined deity should be a god called Takumushitama, written as '多久虫玉神' in Japanese, because of the name of the shrine. It is also said that the Chinese character '虫' (which literally means insects) in the name of the shrine was wrongly used instead of '豆' (which literally means beans), pronounced as zu in Japanese, and a book called "Yamato no Shinsaishi" (compiled by Shozo TANAKA) insists that the original enshrined deities of this shrine must be Takutsutama no Mikado and Shitateru-hime.

It is unclear when it was built, but it is located at a traditional place called Katashio Ukiana no Miyaato (the ruins of the Katashio Ukiana Palace), which was the capital in the reign of the third Emperor, Annei. It has been said that a chokusai (festival held by imperial order) was held in the reign of Emperor Sujin. As the Engishiki Jimmyocho (register of shrines in Japan) says, 'Iwazononiimasu-takumushitama-jinja Shrine with two seats for deities in Katsuraginoshimo County, Yamato Province,' this shrine is labeled as Taisha (grand shrines), and the shrine receives heihaku (Shinto offering of cloth) as a Tsukinami shrine (shrine which receives heihaku at a festival called Tsukinami-sai) and Niiname shrine (shrine which receives heihaku at an annual festival called Niiname-sai).

It is said that the shrine was called Isonokami in ancient times. It is interesting that it may have something to do with a place called Isonokami, where Isonokami-jingu Shrine is.

On the other hand, some people believe that it had something to do with Sonokarakamino-yashiro Shrine enshrined at the Imperial Court.

It was promoted to a prefectural shrine in 1931. It was added to shrines on the exceptional list (called Beppyo-jinja shrine) of The Association of Shinto Shrines in 1966.

By Train; Takada-shi Station of the Kintetsu Minamiosaka Line, Kinki Nippon Railway

By Car: National Route 166

[Original Japanese]