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Ōmukade

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Ōmukade
Oomukade
Information
Japanese name 大百足
Romanized name Ōmukade
Meaning Giant centipede
Type Animal form

Ōmukade (大百足 or おおむかで, Ōmukade) is a very large centipede-like yokai that lives in the mountains near Lake Biwa. Some stories say that it's so large that dragons feared it.

DescriptionEdit

Not far from Hamamatsu, a town located east of Kyoto in the province of Totomi at the east road of Japan, there’s a town called Tschitta. Near this town there’s a bridge leading over the Yokatagawa. The length of this bridge seems even more remarkable as it is cut into two parts by an isle in the river. Near this bridge, which is called Tschittanohashi (Bridge of Tschitta), because of the close proximity to the village, once lived a gruesome monster, a huge centipede, or, as the Japanese call this, a Mukade, this is also why they call the hill he lived on “Mukade-hill." This poisonous centipede made the army-road insecure and noone dared to oppose him.

He was especially dangerous at night-time when he grew so courageous that he even attacked the breed of the dragons who lived under the bridge. He killed the helpless cubs without any fear of the big dragons’ might. Because of this, a grim war between the dragons and the Mukade began. Despite their divine might, the dragons couldn’t do anything against the Mukade in his hiding place and so he always won and he continued his nightly raids until the dragons got some unsuspected help. A hero from the line of the Minamoto called Tawaratoda heard of the people’s pain that was caused by the Mukade and bravely he went to the monster’s lair and killed it with his arrows. He fired them so strongly that they went through the Mukade’s thick skin and finally the beast lay dead on the ground before the hero.It is said that the dead monster’s length extended that of two adult men.

When the dragons and oceangods heard of this great deed, they came to the hero, praised him and told him that he would live for a long time. They also prophesied that his kin would have the greatest might on earth. And that’s how it happened, because 250 years later, Yoritomo from the same family monopolised all worldly might as the Shôgun and later two times one of his subfamilies, the Aschikaga and the Tokugawa, succeeded in gathering all this honour and thus the ruler’s might for centuries.  

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