Kibitsu Shrine


Kibitsu Shrine (吉備津神社) is located in Okayama. It is one of major Shrine in Sanyo-do area. It enshrines Kibitsuhiko no Mikoto who is the general of Sanyo-do. He conquered and ruled this land of Kibi. He was highly respected as the founder of Kibi, and enshrined as the guardian of this area. The main shrine was built in 1425, and designated as the national treasure of Japan. The legend of Momotaro was born in this shrine.

Visitor's Info.
There is a parking and restroom.

0. at Okayama Station.
1. use JR Kibitsu Line to Kibitsu (20 min.)
2. walk south.



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周圍的地圖 Kibitsu Shrine


Kibitsu Shrine

Enshrines: Okibitsuhiko no Mikoto, Kibitakehiko no Mikoto.

According to the legend of Okayama, 10 Emperor Suijin assigned Prince Kibitsuhiko no Mikoto to conquer Sanyo-do. He became the general and brought his army to this land of Kibi. In Kibi, there are Ogres from Kudara called "Ura" clan. Kibitsuhiko defeated the Ogre "Ura," and brought back the peace into Kibi. After his great victory, he stayed at the land of Kibi and peacefully ruled this land.

According to the legend, this shrine was established in 5 generations after Kibitsuhiko. The descendant of Kibitsuhiko, Kayaominarumi found Kibitsu Shrine.

The legend of Defeating Ogre (Oni) of Ura.
Ura was evil prince from Kudara. He had ugly and scary face with huge and strong body. When he moved to this land he built a castle on the top of mountain. He was mugging people, kidnapping woman and destroying other towns.

People around here started calling his castle "kino Castle," literary means the castle of Ogre.

One day, the royal prince and the general of Sanyo-do, Kibitsuhiko brought his army to defeat this Orga, Ura. In the battle, the single arrow could never reach the castle. So, he released two sets of arrows to Ura. one arrow didn't make it as usual, but another arrow hit the left eye of Ura.

Ura changed his look to Kiji Bird and tried to escape. Kibitsuhiko also changed his look to hawk and chase Ura. Then, Ura changed his look to fish and run away from Bloody River which made from his own left eye's blood. Kibitsu hiko changed his look to cormorant, and finally captured Ura. Ura surrendered and gave Kibitsuhiko his crown. Ura was sealed under steal pot of Kibitsu Shrine.

In this war, Kibitsuhiko brought his servant warrior, Inukaitakeru, Sasamorihiko and Tometamaomi.

This legend of defeating Ogre Ura became the story of Momotaro.

Main Shrine, Worshipping Shrine
The main shrine and the worshipping Shrine was built in 1425. It took about 25 years to built it. The style of the building is called Kibitsu Zukuri Style. This style exists only this shrine. This building structure is the same as the Daibutsuden in Todaiji Temple. In side of the shrine has many levels for worshipping.

Narikama Shinji
... is unique ceremony. It appears in the record of 1568. Therefore, this ceremony was already popular in Muromachi Period. This ceremony is a divination with a rice pot. The priest divine to Kibitsuhiko no Mikoto with a sound of rice cooking. This is also originated with the legend of Ura. Ura was killed and buried under a rice pot of this shrine. One day, Ura started moaning noise. Some other day, Ura appeared in the dream of Kibitsuhiko, and told him that "Ask Ura's wife to cook rice with that pot. When the sound of the pot was peaceful, then the land will be peace. If the sound was aggressive, then there is a disaster. Keep her as the priest. Eventually, her sprits combined with sprits of Ura and give peace to all people in Kibi."