Itsumade

Itsumade are strange bird-like chimera in Japanese folklore. They have a human-ish face with a pointed beak, snake's body, sharp claws and huge wings. They appear in the sky at night, flying in circles and crying out 'itsumademo' which means 'until when?' It is said that they appear during disasters, especially if many people are suffering or dying. Their cries of 'until when' ask how long the suffering will go unnoticed. They can also manifest if the spirits of the dead haven't been pacified. These wandering spirits become vengeful ghosts in the form of itsumade.

Artist unknown

Toriyama Sekien, 17th century

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