Shinchū, The Divine Insect, Extermination of Evil (J., Hekija-e)

Organization control number
Cultural property designation
National Treasure
Era century
Heian to Kamakura period, 12th century
Item shape
Hanging scroll; ink and colors on paper
H 25.8, W 70.0
Nara National Museum
Originally these paintings were all included in one handscroll. Deities such as Tenkeisei, Sendan Kendatsuba, Shinchū, Shōki, Bishamon-ten are depicted in the pictures as exterminating demons and evil spirits. According to some old documents, on the occasion of the Butsumyō-e ritual in the court, which was performed for the purpose of repentance of people's sins for the year and exorcism, folding screens called Taisō-byōbu"" were used instead of the screens with illustrations of hell. Therefore, there is a possibility that the paintings of deities' exterminating evilness were used at the Butsumyō-e ritual in the court. As the painting style and the type of these scrolls introduced in this article are similar to those of ""Scroll of Hells"" and ""Scroll of Hungry Ghosts"", some art historians include these paintings of deities in the category of ""Rokudō-e"" (paintings of the Six Realms).""

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Extermination of Evil (J., Hekija-e)

Heian to Kamakura period, 12th century

National Treasure

Nara National Museum