Oh, is this that? It’s very small.

I couldn’t help exclaiming the moment I saw it. In my heart. It is because I had no idea that this is that.

Nijo Park located northwest of Nijo Castle. That was there as if it is standing stealthy in one corner of it (northwest). It is the shrine whose origin was monster exterminated by Yorimasa Minamoto, a military commander in the late Heian period (794- 1185).

Nue-daimyojin Shrine (Photo by the author)

Nue-daimyojin Shrine

Yes, this shrine is a shrine which was built in Showa 4 (1929) to honor the legendary feat of Yorimasa Minamoto, a military commander of the Minamoto clan, to exterminate “Nue” (Japanese chimera). Beside it, the stone monument is standing regarding “Nue pond”, and it was built in Edo period (1700) to honor the extermination of Nue by Yoritomo Minamoto.

The legend of extermination of Nue by Yoritomo Minamoto was described in that-famous (Heike Story).

The pitch-black darkness stirs people’s imagination and amplifies their fear. In the night in Heian era with little light, people were feeling demons in the darkness.

And it came to pass at two o’clock in the morning, at the hour of ox, that it appeared in the palace, emitted an eerie and lonely voice that resembles a tiger thrush (a bird species classified in the thrush family of sparrows), plunged people into the bottom of the terror.

In Ninpei period, (1151-54) the ruler of the time, Emperor Konoe, was suffering every night from the weary monster which appeared in the palace every night. And at last, he was so terrified that he fell ill.

sick emperor

It’s a regret.

Then, there was a brave selected to exterminate that monster.
Yes, he was Yorimasa Minamoto, the man who became the leader of the Genji clan.

Image of Yorimasa Minamoto

However, there was an issue in this person. Although he was famous as a poet, Yorimasa was actually not good at martial arts. So, he once declined it, saying “no it impossible for me!”, but eventually, he undertook it saying “OK”, and entered the palace with his followers and at last the time to confront with the monster came to him.


What Yorimasa had was the bow that had been handed down in the Genji clan, Raijodo”.
When it was midnight, a mysterious black smoke rose up in the palace.


Then, Yorimasa shooted an arrow to that cloud with all his might!

Yorimasa successfully shot something down. The “it” suffered from the spiritual power of the arrow, and the follower put an end to it with a dagger and fearfully confirmed the true identity of the “it”. Then…

Wow, this is surprising!!


A monkey head, a raccoon body, a snake tail, and tiger arms and legs. A true deformity. A true monster. This is a real monster!

And after that, the “Nue” was carried away on the Utuho-bune (ferry to the underworld) and floated down the river in accordance with the ritual of exorcising evil spirits.

〈The end〉

Nue pond in Nijo Park located in the north of Nijo Castle, and where the Nue is said to have fallen is said to be the place where Yorimasa washed the arrowhead soaked in blood after shooting the Nue.

Nue pond (Photo by the author)

Nue pond

In Shinmei Shrine on Sakyo district (Ayano Koji Takakura Nishi Hairu), there was an arrowhead used in extermination of Nue dedicated and stored even now.

Nue Great Myojin and Nue pond colored by the legend of extermination of Nue by Yorimasa Minamoto. How about visiting there at least once in your life?
By the way, many children were playing happily in Nijo Park. They jumped around the pond, run freely around the pond, petted their dogs, etc.

They are too cute! That’s all.

Nue Great Myojin

  • Location: 602-8155
    Kyoto City Kamigyo word Chiekoin Street Marutamachi Kudaru Shuzei town 910-40, Inside Nijo Park
  • Tel:075-222-3366 (Health and Welfare Administration Division, Department of Health and Welfare, Bureau of Health and Welfare)
  • URL:
  • Public transportation: 1: Ride to Kyoto City Municipal Subway “In front of Nijo Castle” station and 20-minute walk. 2: Ride to JR “Nijo” station and 15-minute walk
  • Worship fee: free
  • Worshiped gods: Nue Great Myojin, Tamahime Great Myojin, Asahi Great Myojin
    The benefits: Requiem for spectral spirits




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