Hototogisu (magazine)

Hototogisu (ホトトギス, "lesser cuckoo") is a Japanese literary magazine focusing primarily on haiku. Founded in 1897, it was responsible for the spread of modern haiku among the Japanese public[1] and is now Japan's most prestigious and long-lived haiku periodical.[2]


Hototogisu was founded in 1897 in Matsuyama by Yanagihara Kyokudō, who edited it under the direction of Masaoka Shiki.[3] It soon became the leading forum for Shiki's Nippon school of haiku. The following year, the magazine's headquarters moved to Tokyo and its editorship was taken over by Takahama Kyoshi.[3] At the same time, the magazine's scope was expanded to include tanka and haibun as well has haiku, and Shiki began publishing essays in his shaseibun ("sketch from life prose") style.[4] It had established itself as Japan's leading haiku magazine by this time, and the first Tokyo edition sold out on its first day.[5]

Following Shiki's death in 1902, the magazine's focus shifted to the fiction of modernist writers such as Natsume Sōseki, but in 1912 Kyoshi once again began including haiku.[6]

In 1916, Kyoshi initiated the "Kitchen Miscellanies" column in Hototogisu to promote the writings of women haiku poets such as Sugita Hisajo.[7][8]

When Kyoshi died in 1959, editorship passed to his son Toshio.[9] Since 1979, the editor has been Teiko Inahata (b. 1931), Kyoshi's granddaughter.[1][10][11]

Notable contributors


  1. Hirai (2003), p. 7.
  2. Ueda (2003), p. x.
  3. Beichman (2002), p. 26.
  4. Beichman (2002), p. 27.
  5. Beichman (2002), p. 152.
  6. Higginson (1985), p. 27.
  7. Rodd, Laurel Rasplica. "Meiji Women's Poetry" in Copeland & Ortabasi (2006), p. 32
  8. Ueda (2003), p. xxvi.
  9. Higginson (1985), p. 28.
  10. Donegan (2010), p. 100.
  11. Ueda (2003), p. xxxii.


  • Beichman, Janine (2002). Masaoka Shiki: His Life and Works. Cheng & Tsui. ISBN 9780887273643.
  • Copeland, Rebecca L.; Ortabasi, Melek, eds. (2006). The Modern Murasaki: Writing by Women of Meiji Japan. Columbia University Press. ISBN 9780231137751.
  • Donegan, Patricia (2010). Haiku Mind: 108 Poems to Cultivate Awareness and Open Your Heart. Shambhala Publications. ISBN 9781590307588.
  • Hirai, Masako, ed. (2003). Now, To Be! Shiki’s Haiku Moments for Us Today / Ima, ikiru! Shiki no sekai. U-Time Publishing. ISBN 4-86010-040-9.
  • Ueda, Makoto (2003). Far Beyond the Field: Haiku by Japanese Women. Columbia University Press. ISBN 9780231128636.
  • Higginson, William J.; Harter, Penny (1985). The Haiku Handbook: How to write, share, and teach haiku. McGraw-Hill. ISBN 9780070287860.
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