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The Kojiki, translated by Basil Hall Chamberlain, [1919], at

p. 20


Having descended from Heaven onto this island, they saw to the erection 1 of an heavenly august pillar, they saw to the erection of an hall of eight fathoms. 2 Tunc [20] quæsivit [Augustus Mas-Qui-Invitat] a minore sorore Augustâ Feminâ-Qui-Invitat: "Tuum corpus quo in modo factum est?" Respondit dicens: "Meum corpus crescens crevit, sed est una pars quæ non crevit continua." Tunc dixit Augustus Mas-Qui-Invitat: "Meum corpus crescens crevit, sed est una pars quæ crevit superflua. Ergo an bonum erit ut hanc corporis mei partem quæ crevit, superflua in tui corporis partem quæ non crevit continua inseram, et regiones procreem?" Augusta Femina-Quæ-Invitat respondit dicens: "Bonum erit." Tunc dixit Augustus Mas-Qui-Invitat: "Quod

p. 21

quum ita sit, ego et tu hanc cœlestem augustam, columnam circumeuntes mutuoque occurrentes, augustarum [i.e. privatarum] partium augustam coitionem faciemus." 3 Hâc pactione factâ, dixit [Augustus Mas-Qui-Invitat]: "Tu a dexterâ circumeuns occurre; ego a sinistrâ occurram." Absolutâ pactione ubi circumierunt, Augusta Femina-Qui-Invitat primum inquit: "O venuste et amabilis adolescens!" Deinde Augustus Mas-Qui-Invitat inquit: "O venusta et amabilis virgo!" Postquam singuli orationi finem fecerunt, [Augustus Mas-Qui-Invitat] locutus est sorori, dicens: "Non decet feminam primum verba facere." Nihilominus in thalamo [opus procreationis] inceperunt, et filium [nomine] Hirudinem 4 [vel Hirudini similem] pepererunt. This child they placed in a boat of reeds, and let it float away. Next they gave birth to the Island of Aha. 5 This likewise is not reckoned among their children. 6


20:1 p. 21 The original of this quasi-causative phrase, of which there is no other example in Japanese literature so far as the translator's reading goes, is interpreted by Motowori in the sense of the English locution to which it literally corresponds, and it has here been rendered accordingly, though with considerable hesitation. Hirata does not approve of Motowori's view; but then the different text which he here adopts imposes on him the necessity of another interpretation. (See his "Exposition of the Ancient Histories," Vol. II, pp. 39-40).

20:2 The original word hiro (written ) is defined as the distance between the hands when the arms are outstretched. The word rendered "hall" may also be translated "palace."—The text of the parallel passage of the "Chronicles" is "they made the Island of Onogoro the central Pillar of the land,"—a statement which seems more rational and more in accordance with general tradition than that of these "Records."

21:3 This is Hirata's view of the import of the somewhat obscure original (see his "Exposition of the Ancient Histories," Vol. II, pp. 61-64). Motowori's interpretation is: "auguste in thalamo coibimus."

21:4 p. 22 The name in the original is Hiru-go, an instance of the fortuitous verbal resemblances occasionally found between unrelated languages.

21:5 Literary "foam." It is supposed to have been an islet near the island of Ahaji in the province of Sanuki.

21:6 Hiru-go was not so reckoned, because he was a failure.

Next: Section V.—Birth of the Eight Islands