The works of Sakubei Yamamoto
Omens, Superstitions, Taboos

The Miraculous Water of the Tengu in 1903 #4 (The Maiden Selling Lyric Sheets of a Counting Song)
September 1965

Meiji Sanju Rokunen Tengu no Reisui # 4 (Kazoeuta-uri no Shojo)
[The Miraculous Water of the Tengu in 1903 #4 (The Maiden Selling Lyric Sheets of a Counting Song)]
38.0 x 53.8 cm Painting in Watercolors and Ink

The personnel foreman's subordinate was scolded by his boss and took his frustration out on others. It was the same as the following proverb "Hate a priest, and you will hate his very surplice."

Also among the performers visiting the coal pit, a saleswoman selling lyric sheets of a counting song exaggeratedly advertising the miraculous water was sometimes seen. The woman of around twenty years of age, who had a Japanese face towel wrapped around her head and wore a splashed kimono, a red waist band, a pair of white kokakes (covering for the back of the hand and wrist), a pair of white gaiters, and a pair of straw sandals (over a pair of Japanese socks), stood in front of the entrance of each pit worker's house. She sang a few verses of the song below in a beautiful voice like a Japanese bush warbler.

Song Lyrics
Hitotsu to seeh! Hito mo shittaru Chikuzen no Asakura-gun no Akizuki ni,
Buzen-bo tengu ga arawarete ooku no hito o sukuwareru.
Futatsu to seeh! Fushigini yoku kiku kami no mizu don-na nambyo mo sugu nayoru [sic: normally naoru; cure]. Sono reigen no arigata ya.

Firstly! Buzen-bo tengu (Japanese long-nosed goblin) appeared in Akizuki Town in Asakura County in Chikuzen that you know well to save lots of people.
Secondly! The water of this god has marvelous effects on any serious diseases and cures them immediately. How wonderful the miraculous effects are!

The lyrics of this song were composed of about twenty skillfully punned verses and were printed on a piece of Japanese calligraphy paper folded widthways. She sold the paper for 2 sen (0.02 yen) a piece. It was written on most of the pieces of paper that the writer of the song was Sakujiro Harada living in Hashiguchimachi in Nakashima, Fukuoka City.
Since miners entering the pit greatly decreased in number to visit Akizuki, it became difficult to achieve the expected coal output. The personnel boss (torishimari) in the pit tried hard to get the miners to enter the pit. However, lots of miners still continued taking days off. Therefore, he was in a bad humor and hard on the counting song saleswoman. "Hey, what are you doing there? Stop singing the song!"

Lettering on the Plates on the Pair of Pillars of the Doorway
Juichigo: No.11
Chokkatsu: Direct Worker
Kono [family name] Otsukichi [given name]
Doh [the same family name] Hei [given name]

Translation Assisted by Mr. Nathan Johndro

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