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Home » 2. Kami (Deities) » Kami in Classic Texts
Watatsumi
[Watatsumi no kami] (Kojiki)
Other names: Watatsumi no ō-kami(Kojiki), Watatsumi no mikoto(Nihongi)



A tutelary of the sea. According to Kojiki, the sea deity Ōwatatsumi no kami was produced by Izanagi and Izanami as part of the process of giving birth to the kami (kamiumi). Both Kojiki and Nihongi record that when Izanagi returned from the underworld land of Yomi and performed ablution (see misogi, harai), three Watatsumi deities were produced, representing the "upper" (Uwawatatsumi) "middle" (Nakawatatsumi) and "bottom" (Sokowatatsumi) parts of the water where he bathed.

The name Watatsumi derives from the words wata-tsu-mochi, literally meaning "holder of the sea," indicating a kami with domain over the ocean.

The Kojiki account also records that Hoori no mikoto (Yamasachi) traveled to the undersea palace of the ocean kami Watatsumi and married Watatsumi's daughter Toyotamabime. See also umi no kami.

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"Establishment of a National Learning Institute for the Dissemination of Research on Shinto and Japanese Culture"
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