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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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CUSTOM: JAPAN NEW YEAR'S

"OMOCHI" (RICE DOUGH) POUNDING IS STILL AN INTEGRAL PART OF NEW
YEAR'S CELEBRATION. IT IS THE MAKING OF THE OLDEST FOOD OF JAPAN
AND IN THE COUNTRY THE POUNDING IS DONE BY THE FEET OF SERVANTS
WHO SING THE FOLLOWING TRADITIONAL SONG AS THEY WORK:


"THE MOUSE IN THE HOUSE OF PLENTY"
WE ARE THE MESSENGERS OF THE GOOD-LUCK GOD,
THE MERRY MESSENGERS.
WE'RE A HUNDRED YEARS OLD, YET NEVER HAVE HEARD
THE FEARFUL CRY OF CAT;
FOR WE'RE THE MESSENGERS OF THE GOOD-LUCK GOD,
THE MERRY MESSENGERS.

Submitter comment:

WHEN IN JAPAN, INFORMANT USED TO WATCH "OMOCHI" POUNDING AT HER
FATHER'S ANCESTRAL HOME.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector share the same surname.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; WARREN

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Work
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F690 F690.101
Food Drink -- Typical menus for the various meals For meal hours, see F574.84. Special or festive meals
Food Drink -- Manner of preparation
BELIEF -- Gods
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: 08-01-1964

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