Dragon Children Hiiki

[ . BACK to DARUMA Museum TOP . ]


The nine children of the dragon king 龍生九子

. Ryuu-oo 竜王 Ryu-O - The Dragon King .


hiiki 贔屓 / 贔負(ひいき) child of the dragon king
bishi びし、 Bìxì

CLICK for more photos !

carving of a Hiiki dragon
source : ceron.jp

This animal is often mixed up with the turtoise, turtle.

. Tsurukame 鶴亀 Crane and Tortoise .

. Turtle Dolls and legends .


Bixi (tortoise)
Bixi (simplified Chinese: 赑屃; traditional Chinese: 贔屭; pinyin: bìxì), also called guifu (龟趺) or baxia (霸下), is a stone tortoise, used as a pedestal for a stele or tablet.
Tortoise-mounted stelae have been traditionally used in the funerary complexes of Chinese emperors and other dignitaries. Later, they have also been used to commemorate an important event, such as an emperor's visit or the anniversary of World War II victory. Besides China, they can be found in Vietnam, Mongolia, Korea, Japan, and even the Russian Far East.

The tradition of tortoise-mounted stelae originated no later than early 3rd century (late Han Dynasty).

In Japan, this form of tortoise-supported stele is found primarily at the graves of prominent Kamakura period (1185–1333) figures, especially in the city of Kamakura. The form does not seem to have been particularly popular in earlier or later times.

bixi - translated as "strong", "capable to support great weight".

"The baxia has an innate love for carrying weights; the creature [that] now [is] under tablets is its image. ...
The bixi has an innate love for literature; the dragons [that] now [are] on the sides of tablets are its image."

© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


source : kyoto-zoo.com

at temple Tooji 東寺 Toji in Kyoto.
This animal wards off chronic diseases. You can wipe it with a special towel (manbyoo nugui 万病ぬぐいの布) sold at the temple to easen the burden of your own body.
This statue is especially popular on the special day of Kobo daishi with the antiques market.

The Hiiki (bishii (ビシー) is often depicted with a memorial stone on its back.
As a child of the dragon king, it likes carrying heavy burdens.
The large stone markers are also a symbol of its longevity.

Toji Homepage
source : www.toji.or.jp
English for Ennichi Market
source : info/tohji_e.htm

. Temple Toji (Tooji 東寺) .


Nine Dragon children 龍生九子

source : mklasohi

1. 贔屓(ひいき Hiiki) 2.(ちふん) 3.蒲牢(ほろう) 4.(へいかん) 5.饕餮(とうてつ) 6.蚣蝮(こうふく) 7.睚眦(がいし) 8.(さんげい)9.椒図(しょうず)


Qianlong-era bixi near Marco Polo Bridge, BeijingSeveral Ming Dynasty texts list what were claimed as the Nine Offspring of the Dragon (龍生九子), and subsequently these feature prominently in popular Chinese stories and writings.
The scholar Xie Zhaozhe (謝肇淛, 1567–1624) in his work Wu Za Zu (五雜俎, ca. 1592) gives the following listing, as rendered by M.W. de Visser:

A well-known work of the end of the sixteenth century, the Wuzazu 五雜俎, informs us about the nine different young of the dragon, whose shapes are used as ornaments according to their nature.

horoo 蒲牢(ほろう)
The [pulao 蒲牢], dragons which like to cry, are represented on the tops of bells, serving as handles.

shuugyuu 囚牛(しゅうぎゅう)
The [qiuniu 囚牛], which like music, are used to adorn musical instruments.

shibun しふん【鴟吻・蚩吻・鵄吻】
The [chiwen 螭吻/鴟吻], which like swallowing, are placed on both ends of the ridgepoles of roofs (to swallow all evil influences, like shachihoko).

choohoo 嘲風(ちょうほう)
The [chaofeng 嘲風], lion-like beasts which like precipices, are placed on the four corners of roofs.

gaisai がいさい【睚眥】
The [yazi 睚眦/睚眥], which like to kill, serve as ornaments of sword-grips.

heikan, geikan 狴犴(へいかん、げいかん). also called
kenshoo 憲章 (けんしょう)
The [bi'an 狴犴], which like litigation, are placed over prison gates (in order to keep guard).

sangei 狻猊(さんげい)
The [suanni 狻猊], which like to sit down, are represented upon the bases of Buddhist idols (under the Buddhas' or Bodhisattvas' feet).
Looks a bit like a lion.

kifu きふ (龟趺)
The [baxia 霸下 . guifu (龟趺)], finally, big tortoises which like to carry heavy objects, are placed under grave-monuments.

hiiki 贔屓
The [bixi 贔屭], which have the shape of the chilong 螭龍, and are fond of literature, are represented on the sides of grave-monuments.

© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


ryuusei kyuushi 竜生九子 nine dragon children

The emperor of China called himself 真龍天子.

His firstborn son was bishi 長男 - ビシ(贔屓) Hiiki
source : uotsuji


for the Hiiki, bixi and baxia see

The classical tradition of stone tomb statuary

ANN PALUDAN Yale University Press, 1991

Scattered throughout China, in remote mountain areas, rice fields, school yards and dusty plains, are thousands of monumental stone figures of men, animals and mythological creatures. These sculptures were carved to line the avenues, or spirit roads, leading to the tombs of important people.
They encompass two thousand years of history, from the spirit road statue on a Han dynasty tomb in 117 B.C. to figures on the tomb of a direct descendant of Confucius in 1934. The statuary belongs to the classical tradition of Chinese sculpture that predated and then coexisted with the better-known Buddhist sculptural tradition.

Drawing on ten years of fieldwork during which the author studied and photographed these sculptures in remote areas of China, she discusses their form and content, records their history and places them in their architectural philosophical and political contexts. She evaluates their position in Chinese art, discussing the role of the sculptor in Chinese society, the traditional Chinese attitude toward sculpture, and the development of sculptural techniques.
She also demonstrates that, apart from its intrinsic artistic interest, the statuary reveals much about contemporary funerary practices, court costumes, and other customs and beliefs.
source : www.amazon.com


Chi (Chinese: 螭; pinyin: chī; Wade–Giles: ch'ih)
means either "a hornless dragon" or "a mountain demon" (namely, chimei 螭魅) in Chinese mythology. Hornless dragons were a common motif in ancient Chinese art, and the
chiwen 螭吻 (lit. "hornless-dragon mouth") was an Imperial roof decoration in traditional Chinese architecture.

In Modern Standard Chinese usage, chi 螭 (魑) "hornless dragon" occurs in words such as:

chilong 螭龍 (with "dragon") "hornless dragon"

chiniu 螭紐 (with "handle; knob") "carved dragon handle (esp. on cups)"
chiwen 螭吻 (with "mouth; lips") "a roof ornament shaped like a dragon", compare the homophonous variant 鴟吻 (with "owl; hawk")
panchiwen 蟠螭文 (with "coiled" and "pattern") "carved patterns of sinuous dragons (esp. on pillars/bronzes)"
chibi 螭陛 (with "palace steps") "steps of the imperial palace; the Emperor"

chishou 螭首 or chitou 螭頭 (both with "head")
"an architectural adornment; gargoyle"

© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


an enigmatic sutra of loneliness
old turtle
says "how boring this long life... "
lingers, and goes away

- Shared by Ido (Mongolia) -
Joys of Japan, September 2012


. Ryuu-oo 竜王 Ryu-O - The Dragon King  .



Gabi Greve said...

Matsuho Hachiman Jinja
257 Kuruma, Awaji, Hyogo

With stone figures of Hiiki
(click on the arrows for more potos)
shared on facebook

Gabi Greve said...

kame 亀と伝説 Legends about turtles, tortoise - Schildkröte