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Story Behind of Lucky Cat (Maneki Neko)

Posted by Misuzu Ishii on

Must-Have Charms, Lucky Cat and Gold Koban Coin

招き猫の意味、知ってますか?

ー招き猫と小判、最強のラッキーアイテムー

 

Have you ever heard Lucky Cat (Maneki Neko) before? Japanese lucky cat, also knows as welcoming cat is usually a ceramic cat doll that is believed to bring good fortune, including money, good business, and also good encounters with others, depending on which paw is up.

 

あなたは招き猫のことを知っていますか?
日本の招き猫は、片手を上げた猫の人形で商売繁盛、金運、良縁を招く縁起物です。

I can bring happiness to you, too! (Cat model: Hana)

 

The origin on Lucky Cat (Maneki Neko)

招き猫の由来

(Photo/ Lucky cats at Gotoku Temple in Tokyo, Japan)

There are several theories about the origin of lucky cats (Maneki Neko), but the most famous one is the story of Gotoku temple in Tokyo, Japan.

In the Edo period, one famous feudal lord entered to a deserted-looking temple, which is now Gotoku temple, because he was invited by a cat who was calling him by waving its paw.

While the Buddhist priest was preaching, the heavy rain started to fall.

The feudal lord thought
"Thanks to the welcoming cat, not only I am staying dry, but also I had great talk with the priest!"

Then, the feudal lord helped rebuild Gotoku temple to show his appreciation to the welcoming cat, which later became Lucky cat (Maneki Neko) we know today.

Although there are several theories of how Lucky cat was born, all stories were created during the Edo period, which is why Lucky cat (Maneki Neko) has Koban coins, the currency in Edo period, also known as Maneki Neko coin.


招き猫の由来はいくつかありますが、
有名なのは東京の「豪徳寺(ごうとくじ)」説です。
江戸時代、日本の有名な藩主が貧しい豪徳寺の飼い猫に手招きされ寺に立ち寄り、
和尚の説法を聞いていると豪雨になりました。
「猫が招いてくれたおかげで、雨に振られずにすみ有り難い説法を聞けた!」と
猫に招かれた藩主は喜び、豪徳寺を立て直してくれたそうです。
その逸話から「招き猫」が発祥したのだとか。

招き猫の由来は、他にも様々な逸話が残っていますが、
どれも江戸時代の話のようです。
だから招き猫は江戸時代の通過「小判」を持っている事が多いのですね。

 

Right or Left - What is the difference?

左右、どちらの手を上げているかで意味が違う?

 

Lucky cat (Maneki Neko) has two different deign; Right paw or Left paw raised.
Each Lucky cat (Maneki Neko) with a raised right or left paw has different meanings.

 
招き猫は、右手、左手を上げているものがありますが
それぞれに意味があります。

Right Paw

  • Raised right paw → Welcoming Money and Happiness. 
  • 右手を上げた招き猫→「金運・幸運」を招く

 

 

Lucky cat with right paw is up will "welcome" the money for you.

On the back of each coin, it says 千万両, which means a large fortune in Japanese.
As keeping the tradition, Catchy's Maneki Neko Coin (Koban coin) has the word, 千万両 with many fishes to make cats happy.


右手を挙げている招き猫は金運を招きます。
Catchyの招き猫小判は、猫にとっての金運「大漁の魚」で
「千万両(『大金』の意)」の漢字をデザインしました。

 

Left Paw

  • Raised left paw → Welcoming Good encounters with others and Good Business
  • 左手を上げた招き猫→「良縁・商売繁盛」を招く


 

 

Lucky cat with left paw is up will "welcome" good encounters with people (and of course, with animals, too). As a result, it helps grow your business by having more customers/clients.

The word, 大入 on the back means "more customers into your store" in Japanese.

For Catchy's Maneki Neko gold koban coin, the word, 大入 has any different cat fur types to wish not only humans but also cats to have many good encounters and be happy together.

左手を挙げている招き猫は「良縁」や「商売繁盛」を招きます。
「お客様がたくさん入る」という意味で「大入」とも言います。
Catchyの招き猫小判は、猫達との良縁を願い
様々な猫柄で「大入」の漢字をデザインしました。

 

Calico (Tricolor) Maneki Neko?

なんで招き猫は三毛猫なの?

Nowadays, we have many different colored Lucky Cat (Maneki Neko) such as black and white.However, in general,  Lucky Cat (Maneki Neko) with tricolor pattern (Calico color) is much commonly seen than other patterns/colors in Japan.

The reason is because almost all the tricolor Lucky cats (Maneki Neko) are Calico male, which believed to bring the happiness.


Usually, the number of Calico male is much less than Calico females in every country, which makes them rare and unique cat.

Just like a 4 leaves clover. The rarer it is, the more good luck will come to you. Of course, our Catchy Lucky cat (Maneki Neko) has a tricolor pattern of Calico cat design!

現在、招き猫の置物は黒猫、白猫、その他様々な毛色がありますが
一般的には三毛猫の招き猫が多く存在します。

なぜなら、三毛の招き猫は幸運を招くとされているオスだからです。
三毛猫のオスは数が少なく、世界各地で幸運を招くとして珍重されています。

Catchyの招き猫は、もちろん三毛猫のデザイン!

 

Maneki Neko and Gold Koban Coin

招き猫が小判を持っている理由

 

Many Lucky cats have Koban coin, the currency during the Edo period in Japan.
Koban was made of Gold, so this symbol means to raise your money luck up high.

Koban coin often has the word, 千万両, which means a large fortune in Japanese.
The combination of Maneki Neko and Koban coin makes even superior lucky charms for everyone.

 

招き猫は小判を持っている姿が多くみられます。
小判とは金でできた日本の江戸時代のお金、ズバリ金運UPの証です。

小判には「千万両」など大金を表す文字が書かれていることが多く
より縁起がいいデザインになっています。

縁起のいい招き猫が、さらに金運UPのご利益を得ている姿なんですね。

 

 

Catchy Lucky Cat Manekineko Koban Has It All

全てを詰め込んだ、Catchy招き猫小判キッカー

 

Catchy Lucky Cat Manekineko Koban is filled with good luck!
It has a Lucky Cat (Maneki Neko) with Koban coin inside the Koban coin!

The Catchy team always wants to make a product that will make both human and cat happy.
Our Catchy Lucky Cat Manekineko Koban may bring the glow of happiness for you and your cat!!

Catchyの招き猫小判キッカーは
小判を抱えた招き猫がさらに小判になっているという
幸運を詰め込んだデザイン!

日本に昔から伝わる、招き猫の縁起の良さを全て詰め込み
このキッカーを手にする人と猫の幸せを願って制作しました。

猫ちゃんが元気いっぱい遊んでくれるのはもちろん
オーナーの皆様にもたくさんのラッキーを招いてくれますように!


Japanese Cat Toys is Here



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