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our arrival, before grandpa's stone sat a little dog looking out on the alert. Gem received us in the capacity of host and conducted us to the grave, saying as plainly as ever dog said, "Don't you see? I know the way."

One morning we rose to find our Gem gone. Inquiries revealed him lying at a short distance from the gate, with his fur dyed in his own lifeblood. He was dead! Whether a prowling, ferocious animal had fallen on him in the night, or a cruel human brute had inflicted the wounds without just cause, we could not ascertain. My young brother took Gem's cruel death to heart; my father, too, felt deeply the sad fate of the now-tohim priceless pet. And here naturally ends the story of our dog.

In our temple, as well as in those of all other de nominations, the birthday of the great common teacher Shaka (Gautama) is observed. It falls on the eighth, I think, of April; the observance is simple and quiet except for the distribution of ubuyu. In the East, when a child is born the midwife immediately plunges it in a tub of warm water. This water is called ubuyu or first bath. On the eighth of April, in every temple a bronze basin is placed before the altar; in the center of the basin stands a bronze image of the Infant Shaka; his attitude is much like that of the Boy Christ pictured in the illustrated Bibles and the Sunday-school cards as teaching a group of the scribes. The myth relates a marvelous account of his rising upright in the bath-tub and telling his astonished parents and old midwife whence he came, pointing to heaven, and

what his mission on earth was. His exact words are recorded in the Buddhist's scriptures.

The bronze vessel is filled with a decoction of a certain dried herb whose taste resembles liquorice. The drink is popularly known as the "sweet tea." The worshiper pours the liquid over the idol with a small dipper and then sips a little of the same, numbling some devotional words.

The excitement of the day consists in the children's running to the temples, during the early part of the morning, with bottles for the sweet tea or the ubuyu, as it is called in this instance. In the temple kitchen the cook has boiled gallons and gallons of it, and from the dawn that functionary is prepared for the hubbub and the hard task of dispensing it expeditiously to the throng. As the holiday comes in the same season of the year as Easter, the floral decoration of the temples are beautiful; the bronze roof above the basin and image is always artistically covered over with a quantity of a native flower named gengé, which the botanist may classify under the genus Trifolium, if I may trust my early observation. The flowers literally color the fields pink in the spring.


IN describing a distant view of Imabari I made mention of a sea-god's shrine jutting out into the sea: the festival of that god as well as of one situated on the harbor and of another on the bank of

a river takes place in the summer. The people go worshiping in the evening. A myriad of lights twinkle in the air and are reflected on the water below; refreshment stands line the approaches to the shrine, and their vociferous proprietors assert their articles to be the very best; the crackers go off like pop-corn and scintillating fireworks dart upward now here, now there and everywhere, ending in resplendent showers of sparks; drums are beating incessantly; the people jostle each other in getting on and off the steps of the shrine; along the beach are seated a multitude cooling in the breeze, the children amusing themselves by digging pits in the sand and making ducks and drakes upon the water. These are the salient features of the midsummer nights' festivities. The last but not the least attraction is the reviving breeze along the shore; the worshipers generally go through the offering of pennies, clapping of hands, bowing and murmuring of prescribed, short prayers as hastily as practicable, that they may have more time on the beach.

On the fifteenth of August a great festival takes place every year in my native town. It is in honor of a patron deity. Everybody is up with the dawn, children especially are up ever so early in the morning. Paper lanterns hoisted high in the air on long bamboo sticks are moving toward the shrine. It is yet dark, but the people forget sleepiness in the bracing air of the daybreak and in the expected joy. Every store is cleared of its merchandise and has a temporary home-shrine erected, the god being a scroll with the deity's name written on it. Two earthen bottles of saké are invariably offered.

When the day is fully come, the procession starts from the permanent abode of the gods. A huge drum comes foremost, then a number of men in red masks with peaked noses, representing fabulous servants of the gods. Then come two portable shrines built like a sedan chair, and the rear is brought up by yagura-daiko. This last is a large frame-work of varnished wood carried by men. On the top of it a large bass-drum is placed, and with four boys around it. The boys are dressed in fancy costumes and beat time for the songs of the men below. The men are all dressed in white and seem at first to keep the presence of their gods in mind; but soon they get drunk, being treated with wine in every house, and spatter their garments with mud.

As the shrines pass, the men get into the houses, seize the earthen bottles of saké and pour the contents over them. These men also get tipsy and treat the beautiful shrines rudely, turning them

wildly and throwing them hard on the ground; so that, at the end of the day, there is nothing left of them but their trunks. This rude usage became an established custom, and the portable shrines are built very strong.

A few days previous to the festival, boys prepare for it by constructing jumonji. Two slender elastic timbers are tied together in the form of a cross; one boy mounts it, and his comrades lift him up by applying their shoulders to the four ends. They march up and down the streets, singing festal songs, and challenge boys of other streets to come forth and have a "rush."

Not far from my native town there stands a high peak called Stone-hammer. It is customary for older boys to scale the lofty mountain and pay tribute to the deity on the top of it. They get somebody who has been there before for their leader. The preparation for the holy hazardous journey is rigorous. They bathe in cold water for months previously, live on plain diet, and pass the time in prayers and penances. Were their hearts and bodies unclean, it is reported that, on their ascent to the shrine, the gods' messengers—creatures half man, half eagle-would grasp them by the hair and fly away among the clouds and often kill them by letting them fall upon the crags and down into the valleys.

When a set of the hardy youths start out for the venturesome pilgrimage, they are dressed in white cotton clothes, shod with straw sandals, and have their long hair thoroughly washed and hanging loose. Each carries a pole with a tablet nailed on

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