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 Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità

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Femminile Serpente
Numero di messaggi : 1826
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Località : Prov. CN

MessaggioOggetto: Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità   Mer 28 Apr 2010 - 8:03


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Fox is a common name for many species of carnivorous mammals belonging to the Canidae family. Foxes are small to medium-sized canids (slightly smaller than the median-sized domestic dog), characterized by possessing a long narrow snout, and a bushy tail (or brush).
Members of about 37 species are referred to as foxes, of which only 12 species actually belong to the Vulpes genus of 'true foxes'. By far the most common and widespread species of fox is the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), although various species are found on almost every continent. The presence of fox-like carnivores all over the globe has led to their appearance in both popular culture and folklore in many cultures around the world (see also Foxes in culture). The gray fox is one of only two canine species known to climb trees; the other is the raccoon dog.

* 1 Etymology
* 2 General characteristics
* 3 Classification
* 4 Diet
* 5 Conservation
* 6 Relationships with humans
o 6.1 Fox hunting
o 6.2 Domestication
o 6.3 In culture
* 7 References
* 8 External links


The Modern English word "fox" is Old English, and comes from the Proto-Germanic word fukh – compare German Fuchs, Gothic fauho, Old Norse foa and Dutch vos. It corresponds to the Proto-Indo-European word puk- meaning "tail of it" (compare Sanskrit puccha, also "tail"). The bushy tail is also the source of the word for fox in Welsh: llwynog, from llwyn, "bush, grove".[1] Lithuanian: uodegis, from uodega, "tail", Portuguese: raposa, from rabo, "tail"[2] and Ojibwa: waagosh, from waa, which refers to the up and down "bounce" or flickering of an animal or its tail.[3] Male foxes are known as dogs or reynards, females as vixen, and young as kits, pups, or cubs.[4] A group of foxes is a "skulk", "troop" or "earth".
General characteristics

In the wild, foxes can live for up to 10 years, but most foxes only live for 2 to 3 years due to hunting, road accidents and diseases. Foxes are generally smaller than other members of the family Canidae such as wolves, jackals, and domestic dogs. Reynards (male foxes) weigh on average, 5.9 kilograms (13 lb) and vixens (female foxes) weigh less, at around 5.2 kilograms (11.5 lb). Fox-like features typically include a distinctive muzzle (a "fox face") and bushy tail. Other physical characteristics vary according to habitat. For example, the fennec fox (and other species of fox adapted to life in the desert, such as the kit fox) has large ears and short fur, whereas the Arctic fox has tiny ears and thick, insulating fur. Another example is the red fox which has a typical auburn pelt, the tail normally ending with white marking. Litter sizes can vary greatly according to species and environment - the Arctic Fox for example, has an average litter of four to five, with eleven as maximum. [5]

Unlike many canids, foxes are not usually pack animals. Typically, they live in small family groups, and are opportunistic feeders that hunt live prey (especially rodents). Using a pouncing technique practised from an early age, they are usually able to kill their prey quickly. Foxes also gather a wide variety of other foods ranging from grasshoppers to fruit and berries.

Foxes are normally extremely wary of humans and are not usually kept as indoor pets; however, the silver fox was successfully domesticated in Russia after a 45 year selective breeding program. This selective breeding also resulted in physical and behavioral traits appearing that are frequently seen in domestic cats, dogs, and other animals, such as pigmentation changes, floppy ears, and curly tails.[6]

Canids commonly known as foxes include members of the following genera:

* Alopex: Arctic fox, although the definitive mammal taxonomy list as well as genetic evidence places it in Vulpes, and not as a genus unto itself.
* Canis: The Ethiopian Wolf, also called, variously, Semien fox or Semien jackal (though recently renamed to reflect its biological affinity with the gray wolf).
* Cerdocyon: Crab-eating fox.
* Chrysocyon: Maned wolf (in English), aguara guazú ("big fox" in Guarani) and zorro rojizo ("reddish fox," one of several names used by Spanish speakers).
* Dusicyon: Falkland Islands fox.
* Lycalopex: Six South American species.
* Otocyon: Bat-eared fox.
* Urocyon: Gray fox, island fox and Cozumel fox.
* Vulpes: Including twelve species of true foxes, including the red fox, V. vulpes, Tibetan Sand Fox, Vulpes ferrilata and their closest kin.

A Chilla fox in Pan de Azúcar National Park in the coast of Atacama Desert.

Foxes are omnivores.[7] The diet of foxes is largely made up of invertebrates. However, it also includes rodents, rabbits and other small mammals, reptiles, (such as snakes), amphibians, grasses, berries, fruit, fish, birds, eggs, dung beetles, insects and all other kinds of small animals. Many species are generalist predators, but some (such as the crab-eating fox) are more specialist. Most species of fox generally consume around 1 kg of food every day. Foxes cache excess food, burying it for later consumption, usually under leaves, snow, or soil.
The island fox is a critically endangered species.

Foxes are readily found in cities and cultivated areas and (depending upon species) seem to adapt reasonably well to human presence.

Red foxes have been introduced into Australia which lacks similar carnivores, and the introduced foxes prey on native wildlife, some to the point of extinction. A similar introduction occurred in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in temperate North America, where European reds (Vulpes vulpes) were brought to the colonies for fox hunting, where they devastated the American red fox population[citation needed]through more aggressive hunting and breeding. Interbreeding with American reds, traits of the European red eventually pervaded the gene pool, leaving European and American foxes now virtually identical.[citation needed]

Other fox species do not reproduce as readily as the red fox, and are endangered in their native environments. Key among these are the crab-eating fox (Cerdocyon thous) and the African bat-eared fox. Other foxes such as fennec foxes, are not endangered.

Foxes have been successfully employed to control pests on fruit farms while leaving the fruit intact.[8]
Relationships with humans
A Red Fox on the porch of an Evergreen, Colorado home.

Fox attacks on humans are not common but have been reported. In November 2008 an incident in Arizona, USA was reported in which a jogger was attacked and bitten by a rabid fox.[9]
Fox hunting
Main article: Fox hunting

Fox hunting is a controversial sport that originated in the United Kingdom in the 16th century. Hunting with dogs is now banned in the United Kingdom,[10][11][12][13] though hunting without dogs is still permitted. The sport is practiced in several other countries including Australia, Canada, France, Ireland, Italy, Russia and the United States.

Fox hunting has been frowned upon in more recent times in some areas. Many argue that is an inhumane and unnecessarily violent pastime when attempted for sport alone; many others question whether or not it should even be deemed a "sport" due to its contents.
Main article: Domesticated Silver Fox

The Russian Silver Fox, or Domesticated Silver Fox, is the result of nearly 50 years of experiments in the Soviet Union and Russia to domesticate the silver morph of the Red Fox. Notably, the new foxes not only became more tame, but more dog-like as well: they lost their distinctive musky "fox smell", became more friendly with humans, put their ears down (like dogs), wagged their tails when happy and began to vocalize and bark like domesticated dogs. The breeding project was set up by the Soviet scientist Dmitri K. Belyaev.
In culture
Main article: Foxes in culture

In many cultures, the fox appears in folklore as a symbol of cunning and trickery, or as a familiar animal possessed of magic powers.

1. ^ Transactions of the Philological Society, retrieved August 31st 2008
2. ^ The Online Etymology Dictionary, retrieved April 3, 2009: headword "Fox"
3. ^ Introduction to Ojibwe Language
4. ^ What Is a Baby Fox Called?
5. ^ Journal of Mammalogy
6. ^ Early Canid Domestication: The Fox Farm Experiment
7. ^ University of Michigan Musem of Zoology
8. ^ Foxes on Fruit Farms
9. ^ "Attacked jogger takes fox for run". BBC News Online. 6 Nov 2008.
10. ^ "Hunt campaigners lose legal bid". BBC News Online. 23 Jun 2006.
11. ^
12. ^
13. ^


Vulpes vulpes
Da Wikipedia, l'enciclopedia libera.
La volpe rossa o semplicemente volpe (Vulpes vulpes Linnaeus, 1758) è un mammifero carnivoro appartenente alla famiglia dei Canidae.

* 1 Tassonomia
* 2 Distribuzione
* 3 Descrizione
o 3.1 Dimensioni
o 3.2 Aspetto
* 4 Abitudini
o 4.1 Alimentazione
o 4.2 Riproduzione
* 5 Nomi regionali
* 6 Voci correlate
* 7 Note
* 8 Altri progetti
* 9 Collegamenti esterni
* 10 Galleria di Immagini

Tassonomia [modifica]

Dal momento che l'areale di questa specie è tanto vasto, gli studiosi ne hanno classificato non meno di 45 sottospecie. Di seguito viene stilato un elenco di quelle accettate dalla maggior parte degli studiosi, seguito dalla diffusione della sottospecie in questione:

* V. vulpes vulpes , sottospecie nominale diffusa in quasi tutta Europa.
* V. vulpes abietorum Merriam, 1900, del Canada occidentale.
* V. vulpes alascensis Merriam, 1900, dell'Alaska e del Territorio dello Yukon.
* V. vulpes alpherakyi Satunin, 1906, del Turkestan.
* V. vulpes anatolica Thomas, 1920, dell'Asia Minore.
* V. vulpes arabica Thomas, 1902, dei dintorni di Mascate, in Oman.
* V. vulpes atlantica Wagner, 1841, del Marocco.
* V. vulpes bangsi Merriam, 1900, del Canada e degli Stati Uniti.
* V. vulpes barbara Shaw, 1800, dell'Africa nord-occidentale.
* V. vulpes beringiana Middendorff, 1875, della Siberia nord-orientale.
* V. vulpes cascadensis Merriam, 1900, delle coste nord-occidentali degli Stati Uniti e della Columbia Britannica.
* V. vulpes caucasica Dinnik, 1914, della zona dei monti del Caucaso.
* V. vulpes crucigera Bechstein, 1789, della Germania.
* V. vulpes daurica Ognev, 1931, della Regione dell'Ussuri.
* V. vulpes deletrix Bangs, 1898, delle Isole Britanniche.
* V. vulpes dolichocrania Ognev, 1926, dell'Estremo Oriente Russo.
* V. vulpes dorsalis J. E. Gray, 1838, del Nevada
* V. vulpes flavescens J. E. Gray, 1843, dell'Iran settentrionale.
* V. vulpes fulvus Desmarest, 1820, degli Stati Uniti orientali.
* V. vulpes griffithi Blyth, 1854, molto rara, dell'Afghanistan;
* V. vulpes harrimani Merriam, 1900, dell'Isola di Kodiak, in Alaska.
* V. vulpes hoole Swinhoe, 1870, della Cina meridionale.
* V. vulpes ichnusae Miller, 1907, della Sardegna.
* V. vulpes indutus Miller, 1907, di Cipro.
* V. vulpes jakutensis Ognev, 1923, della Jacuzia.
* V. vulpes japonica J. E. Gray, 1868, del Giappone.
* V. vulpes karagan Erxleben, 1777, del Kirghizistan.
* V. vulpes kenaiensis Merriam, 1900, della Penisola di Kenai, in Alaska.
* V. vulpes kurdistanica Satunin, 1906, del Kurdistan.
* V. vulpes macroura Baird, 1852, del settore statunitense delle Montagne Rocciose.
* V. vulpes montana Pearson, 1836, molto rara, dell'Himalaya.
* V. vulpes necator Merriam, 1900, della California e del Nevada.
* V. vulpes niloticus E. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1803, dell'Egitto.
* V. vulpes ochroxantha Ognev, 1926, della Russia.
* V. vulpes palaestina Thomas, 1920, della Palestina.
* V. vulpes peculiosa Kishida, 1924, della Corea.
* V. vulpes pusilla Blyth, 1854, molto rara, del Punjab, in India.
* V. vulpes regalis Merriam, 1900, diffusa dal Canada centro-settentrionale al Nebraska e al Missouri.
* V. vulpes rubricosa Bangs, 1898, del Quebec meridionale e della Nuova Scozia.

Vulpes vulpes shrenckii.

* V. vulpes schrenckii Kishida, 1924, di Sakhalin.
* V. vulpes silacea Miller, 1907, della Spagna.
* V. vulpes splendidissima Kishida, 1924, delle Isole Curili.
* V. vulpes stepensis Brauner, 1914, della Crimea.
* V. vulpes tobolica Ognev, 1926, della Siberia occidentale.
* V. vulpes tschiliensis Matschie, 1907, della Cina nord-orientale.

Distribuzione [modifica]

La volpe rossa è originaria dell’emisfero settentrionale. È presente in tutta la regione Paleartica, dall’Irlanda allo Stretto di Bering; il suo areale si estende poi verso sud in Giappone, Cina e regioni più settentrionali di India, Myanmar e Vietnam. È diffusa inoltre in Africa, lungo la valle del Nilo fino a Khartoum, oltre che nelle regioni marittime di Tunisia, Algeria e Marocco. La si trova anche in Medio Oriente, ad eccezione del deserto centrale arabo. Nel Nordamerica è distribuita dalle Isole Aleutine (all’interno del circolo polare artico e in particolare in Alaska) alla costa caraibica del Texas: l'animale è nativo delle zone boreali, mentre venne introdotto a scopo venatorio e per la sua pelliccia durante il XVIII secolo nelle aree temperate. È presente anche in Australia, dove è stata introdotta alla fine del XIX secolo. In Italia, la sottospecie crucigera è diffusa in tutta l'area peninsulare ed in Sicilia, mentre la sottospecie ichnusae è endemica di Sardegna e Corsica: la volpe risulta invece assente da tutte le isole minori[2].
Si tratta di animali estremamente adattabili (come testimonia l'enorme areale occupato dalla specie), che colonizzano qualsiasi ambiente a disposizione, trovandosi un posto anche nelle periferie delle aree urbane: in generale, le volpi vivono a più ampie densità nelle zone con ecosistemi diversificati e risorse distribuite in modo disomogeneo, mentre tendono a vivere in densità assai basse nelle aree montane, dove il cibo a disposizione è scarso.
Descrizione [modifica]
Dimensioni [modifica]

A seconda della sottospecie presa in considerazione, questi animali possono misurare fra i 75 ed i 140 cm, per un peso che varia fra i 3 e gli 11 kg: queste misure rendono la volpe rossa il più grande appartenente al proprio genere. Le dimensioni degli animali tendono a diminuire in direttrice N-S.
Aspetto [modifica]

Il colore, spesso rossiccio, va dal giallo al marrone, a seconda degli individui e delle regioni. La gola, il ventre e l'estremità della coda sono bianche; quest'ultima è lunga e folta. Il muso è allungato e le orecchie sono triangolari ed estremamente mobili. Essa è giocherellona come i suoi cuccioli ed estremamente furba.
Abitudini [modifica]

Normalmente vive in coppia, con i cuccioli, anche se talvolta è possibile osservarne esemplari solitari o in gruppi di 4 o 6 adulti. Il maschio marchia il territorio in modo sistematico e comunica con i propri simili attraverso segnali sonori, visivi, tattili e olfattivi.Una volpe può riconoscere un altro esemplare dall'odore, oltre a decifrarne il rango gerarchico e il livello sociale. È significativo sottolineare che, in questa specie, la coppia tende a riformarsi ogni anno e che il maschio solitamente partecipa attivamente alla cura e all'allevamento della prole, procurando il cibo e difendendo i cuccioli da possibili predatori.
Alimentazione [modifica]

Anche se il suo cibo prediletto sono conigli e roditori, la volpe è un cacciatore opportunista e si adatta all'ambiente in cui vive. Anche gli uccelli fanno parte della sua dieta e non disdegna neppure insetti, lombrichi, frutta, bacche, carogne e persino pesci. Caccia al calare della notte o all'alba e utilizza vari metodi a seconda della preda: può sferrare un attacco a sorpresa contro animali che escono dalla tana o avvicinarsi ad essi quatta quatta fino a essere abbastanza vicina da saltar loro addosso. Scava nel terreno o ficca il muso nelle cavità per catturare lombrichi.
Riproduzione [modifica]
Cucciolo di volpe

Il periodo degli amori è molto variabile e cambia secondo la latitudine: nella nostra regione ha luogo in inverno, tra dicembre e febbraio. I parti avvengono generalmente tra marzo e aprile. La femmina, dopo una gestazione di 7 settimane, partorisce, in una tana, in media da 3 a 5 piccoli, che vengono allattati per un mese. AI termine di questo periodo essi iniziano a prendere i primi cibi solidi, costituiti da alimenti predigeriti dalla madre e poi rigurgitati. Questa tecnica è molto vantaggiosa poiché permette di nutrire la cucciolata senza portare le carcasse vicino alla tana e nel contempo fa sì che i piccoli non debbano spostarsi alla ricerca di cibo, esponendosi ad eventuali pericoli.
Durante le prime due settimane di vita, la madre non abbandona i cuccioli, si dedica interamente al loro allattamento e viene nutrita dal maschio. La femmina non esita a trasportare in luoghi più sicuri i propri piccoli se, nei pressi della tana, vengono a crearsi fattori di disturbo.I piccoli escono dalla tana per la prima volta intorno alla quarta o quinta settimana e sono molto giocherelloni. A dieci mesi di età, raggiungono la maturità sessuale.

In natura, questa specie può raggiungere un'età di 12 anni.
Nomi regionali [modifica]
Abruzzo olb, olepa
Calabria vurpa, vurpe, vurp',vurpi
Lombardia Volpa (pr.: Vulpa) o Golpa (pr.: Gulpa)
Marche gólpa, vorba
Puglia urpe
Sardegna groddhe, mariane, maccione, matzone, mergiani
Sicilia vurpi
Umbria golpe
Veneto jolpe, volpe
Voci correlate [modifica]

* Mammiferi in Italia
* Kitsune

Note [modifica]

1. ^ Macdonald, D.W. & Reynolds, J.C. 2004. Vulpes vulpes. In: IUCN 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Versione 2010.1
2. ^ Spagnesi M., De Marinis A.M. (a cura di), Mammiferi d'Italia - Quad. Cons. Natura n.14 , Ministero dell'Ambiente - Istituto Nazionale Fauna Selvatica, 2002.
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Femminile Serpente
Numero di messaggi : 1826
Data d'iscrizione : 22.03.10
Età : 39
Località : Prov. CN

MessaggioOggetto: Re: Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità   Mer 28 Apr 2010 - 8:06


Oggi parleremo della volpe, che ha il potere di potersi mimetizzare con l’ambiente, quasi come un camaleonte.
Il mantello estivo di questo eccezionale animale è color marrone che l’aiuta a quanti impossibile da scovare nel bosco, mentre l’ invernale ha il color bianco della neve.
La volpe oltre ad essere elegante, e furba, è un animale attento e molto veloce, pronto ad agire in ogni momento.

La sua forza maggiore è la sua furbizia, che l’aiuta a liberarsi dei suoi nemici, anche se spesso viene uccisa da cacciatori.

La volpe, non solo è furba, ma ha grande attenzione per la propria famiglia, cosa che fa parte delle sue caratteristiche e del tipo di forza che simbolizza.

Le persone che possiedono questa forza, in genere sono degli osservatori silenziosi e riescono sempre a passare inosservati, sanno come fondersi e diventare tutt’uno con l’ambiente circostante, sanno come muoversi silenziosamente, senza dare nell’occhio e sono maestri nell’arte della mimetizzazione.

La volpe ci insegna a capire l’unita e ad usare le conoscenza in maniera saggia a tutti i livelli dell’essere.
Il talismano con la forma di volpe è raccomandato a tutti coloro che si trovano spesso a viaggiare.


Volpe (Madadh-Ruadh, Sionnach): Nella tradizione celtica rappresenta la scaltrezza e la capacità di far perdere le proprie tracce. Permette anche di vedere le motivazioni e i movimenti degli altri, pur rimanendo inosservati.
VOLPE – Mimetismo. Ti aiuta a scivolare nelle situazioni, senza essere visto quando è necessario. Supporta lo sviluppo dell’indipendenza di pensiero. Ti incoraggia a trovare nuove soluzioni, per spezzare le catene del condizionamento e per trovare la tua strada.


Stealthy messenger of the gods,
Cunning and wise, reliable friend,
Guide my steps through this maze of deception
And see this problem to its end.
Magic, Shapeshifting, Invisibility
Fox are seen as totems throughout the world:
the Chinese believed they could take human form,
in Egypt the fox brought favor from the gods,
there was a fox god in Peru,
foxes help the dead get to the next life in Persia,
Cherokees, Hopi other American Indian tribes
believed in its healing power;
the Apache credited the fox with giving man fire.
Since the fox lives "between times" --
on the edge of land, visible as dusk and dawn, and can guide the way to the Faerie Realm.
A fox can teach you to control your aura so that you can be more in harmony
with others and the world.
If you have a fox totem, learning to be invisible is very important in your life.
Imagine yourself blending in with your surroundings, becoming part of the background.
Be very still and quiet.
Through practice you can be unnoticed even at a party or in a crowd.
I have an acquaintance who used this power to evade several muggers;
he stood there in plain sight next to a building ,
and blended himself into the wall;
they did not see him and left without harming him. It can be done!
A fox totem also teaches good eating habits;
the fox eats small amounts frequently which medicine is now telling us is better for our health.
But fox people already knew this.
The fox is a wonderful totem to have.

Ultima modifica di Tila il Sab 14 Ago 2010 - 8:50, modificato 1 volta
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Maschile Capra
Numero di messaggi : 2141
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Località : Roma

MessaggioOggetto: Re: Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità   Mer 28 Apr 2010 - 11:25

Spero di non ripetere cose già dette, ma in Inghilterra si usa molto l'espressione foxy lady, non solo per definire una donna furba, ma soprattutto per descriverne le qualità di grande sensualità.

La figura della volpe è spesso associata nei paesi di origine celtica alla sensualità e al potere erotico.

Sul perché, sulle fonti, etc, mi riservo di portare presto link, immagini e citazioni, posso dire di aver letto questa cosa nel libro di accompagnamento alle delle carte dei animali totem celtici...potrebbe sembrare la solita boiata ma in quel testo ho trovato spesso riferimenti iconografici e citazioni dei testi classici della tradizione celtica.
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Femminile Serpente
Numero di messaggi : 1826
Data d'iscrizione : 22.03.10
Età : 39
Località : Prov. CN

MessaggioOggetto: Re: Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità   Mer 28 Apr 2010 - 15:03

Admin ha scritto:
Spero di non ripetere cose già dette, ma in Inghilterra si usa molto l'espressione foxy lady, non solo per definire una donna furba, ma soprattutto per descriverne le qualità di grande sensualità.

La figura della volpe è spesso associata nei paesi di origine celtica alla sensualità e al potere erotico.

Sul perché, sulle fonti, etc, mi riservo di portare presto link, immagini e citazioni, posso dire di aver letto questa cosa nel libro di accompagnamento alle delle carte dei animali totem celtici...potrebbe sembrare la solita boiata ma in quel testo ho trovato spesso riferimenti iconografici e citazioni dei testi classici della tradizione celtica.
Avevo notato anch'io questa cosa, infatti nel libro che in genere cito, che parla degli animali totem, specifica che la volpe è associata alla magia femminile e alla sensualità.
Aspetto impaziente le tue fonti...
Un abbraccio
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MessaggioOggetto: Re: Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità   Ven 16 Lug 2010 - 16:59


Statua di Kitsune in un altare a Inari adiacente al tempio Buddhista di Todaiji a Nara.

Da Wikipedia, l'enciclopedia libera.

Kitsune (giapponese: 狐) significa in giapponese semplicemente volpe. In Giappone vivono due sottospecie di volpi: la Volpe Rossa del Giappone (Hondo Kitsune, vive sull'isola di Honshū; Vulpes Vulpes Japonica) e la Volpe di Hokkaidō (Kita Kitsune, vive sull'isola di Hokkaidō; Vulpes Vulpes Schrencki). Nella mitologia giapponese sono considerate demoni (Youkai).

* 1 Mitologia
* 2 Origini della parola Kitsune
* 3 Kitsunetsuki
* 4 Kitsune nella cultura popolare
* 5 Altri significati
* 6 Altri progetti

Mitologia [modifica]

Nella mitologia giapponese, si credeva che questi animali possedessero una grande intelligenza, vivessero a lungo ed avessero poteri magici. Il principale tra questi ultimi è l'abilità di cambiare aspetto ed assumere sembianze umane; si dice che una volpe impari a far questo quando raggiunge una determinata età. Le Kitsune appaiono spesso con l'aspetto di una donna bellissima, una dolce ragazzina o un vecchio, ma mai come una donna anziana.

Altri poteri che sono spesso attribuiti alla Kitsune includono la possessione (vedi Kitsunetsuki sotto), la capacità di appiccare il fuoco con la/e coda/e o di sputare fuoco, il potere di entrare nei sogni e l'abilità di creare illusioni così complesse da essere quasi indistinguibili dalla realtà. Alcuni racconti vanno oltre, parlando di Kitsune con la capacità di piegare il tempo e lo spazio, di far impazzire, o di assumere altre forme oltre a quelle umane, come un albero altissimo o una seconda luna in cielo. Occasionalmente le Kitsune sono descritte in termini simili ai vampiri o ai succubi - queste Kitsune si nutrono della vita o dell'anima degli umani, generalmente attraverso contatto sessuale.

A volte le Kitsune sono raffigurate a guardia di una sfera, rotonda o a forma di pera (Hoshi no Tama o Sfera della Stella). Si dice che chi si impossessa della sfera possa obbligare la Kitsune ad aiutarlo; una spiegazione è che la Kitsune "deposita" parte della sua magia in questa palla quando cambia forma. Le Kitsune devono mantenere le promesse o il loro rango e il loro potere diminuisce.

Le Kitsune sono spesso associate alla divinità del riso Inari. Originariamente le Kitsune erano i messaggeri di Inari, ma la distinzione tra i due è ormai talmente sfumata che talvolta Inari è rappresentato come una volpe. Si specula che ci sia stata un'altra divinità volpe nello Shinto, ma non ci sono prove. Le Kitsune sono un elemento comune alla mitologia Shinto e a quella Buddhista in Giappone.

La Kitsune mitologica è uno yōkai. In questo contesto, la parola Kitsune è generalmente tradotta come Demone Volpe; però questo non dovrebbe indurre a pensare che le Kitsune non corrispondano alle comuni volpi. La parola "Demone" in questo caso traduce il più generale concetto di Spirito nel significato più comune in Estremo Oriente, come anima che ha raggiunto uno stato di conoscenza e illuminazione tale da trascendere le leggi del mondo materiale. Ogni volpe che viva sufficientemente a lungo, perciò, può diventare uno spirito. Ci sono due tipi di volpi: le Zenko, o Volpi Celestiali -- quelle associate a Inari, rappresentate come benevole -- e le Yako, o Volpi Selvagge (letteralmente "Volpi di Campo"), spesso, ma non sempre, considerate maliziose.

L'attributo fisico che più rappresenta una Kitsune è la coda, e ne può possedere fino a nove; generalmente, un maggior numero di code rappresenta una Kitsune più vecchia e più potente, e secondo alcune fonti la prima coda addizionale cresce solo dopo migliaia di anni, poi le altre in base all'età e alla saggezza acquisita. In ogni caso, le Kitsune che compaiono nei racconti popolari hanno sempre una, cinque, o nove code, forse a causa di qualche numerologia.

Quando una Kitsune arriva ad avere nove code, il suo pelo diventa argentato, bianco o dorato, e prendono il nome di Kyūbi no Kitsune (Volpe a Nove Code) guadagnando il potere della visione infinita. Allo stesso modo, in Corea, una volpe che viva mille anni diventa una Kumiho, ma la Kumiho è rappresentata come malvagia, a differenza della Kyūbi, che può essere anche benevola. Anche nella mitologia cinese c'è un demone volpe simile alla Kitsune, incluse le nove code: ci sono anzi indizi che le Kitsune siano un mito importato dalla Cina, ma c'è un amplissimo supporto, basato su testi e rappresentazioni artistiche molto antiche, alla tesi che il mito sia originario del Giappone e risalente forse al V secolo a.C..

In alcuni racconti, le Kitsune hanno difficoltà a nascondere la coda nelle loro trasformazioni - generalmente le Kitsune in queste storie ne hanno solo una, il che potrebbe indicare che l'inesperienza ne sia la causa - e il protagonista attento riesce a smascherarla quando questa beve o si distrae.

Le volpi hanno paura dei cani, usati per cacciarle, così le Kitsune li temono e odiano, al punto da tornare al loro aspetto e darsi alla fuga non appena ne vedono uno.

Nella tradizione giapponese, le Kitsune sono spesso presentate come ingannatrici, talvolta molto malevole; in questa veste le Kitsune usano i loro poteri magici per ingannare gli umani; quelle ritratte in una luce positiva scelgono come vittime samurai vanagloriosi, mercanti avidi, e popolani maldicenti, mentre Kitsune più crudeli abusano di poveri contadini o monaci Buddhisti.

In ogni caso, un altro ruolo in cui le Kitsune sono spesso rappresentate è quello di amanti; queste storie d'amore generalmente parlano di ragazzi e Kitsune in forma di fanciulla. Talvolta alla Kitsune è assegnato il ruolo di seduttrice, ma spesso queste storie sono di natura romantica. Generalmente in queste storie il ragazzo (inconsapevolmente) sposa la Kitsune, e ne vanta le virtù; in molte di queste storie è presente anche l'elemento tragico, e generalmente quando la vera identità della volpe è scoperta questa abbandona l'amato, o in altre occasioni lo sposo si sveglia da un sogno, lontano da casa, e scopre di aver vissuto per molto tempo nella tela di illusioni della volpe.

Molte storie parlano di volpi che concepiscono bambini: questi mezzosangue hanno sempre aspetto umano, ma posseggono eccezionali doti fisiche o poteri soprannaturali, che spesso passano in eredità ai propri figli. La natura di queste doti, però, varia molto da una fonte all'altra; tra quelli di cui si dice che abbiano ereditato tali doti c'è l'onmyōji Abe no Seimei, che si dice fosse un Han'yō di Kitsune.

Origini della parola Kitsune [modifica]

La più antica storia nota di una sposa-volpe, che costituisce anche un'etimologia popolare della parola Kitsune, è un'eccezione alla norma in quanto non finisce tragicamente. In questa storia, la volpe assume le sembianze di una donna e sposa l'uomo, e i due, nel corso dei molti anni vissuti insieme, hanno diversi bambini; lei è costretta a rivelare la sua identità quando, terrificata da un cane, ritorna alle sembianze volpine per nascondersi, in presenza di testimoni. Si prepara quindi ad abbandonare la casa, ma il marito la ferma dicendo "Ora che abbiamo passato tanti anni insieme, ed io ho avuto da te molti figli, non posso dimenticarti. Per favore torna a dormire con me." La volpe acconsente, e da allora ogni notte torna dal marito con l'aspetto di donna, e ogni mattina se ne va con l'aspetto di volpe. Per questo è chiamata Kitsune, perché in giapponese antico "Kitsu-Ne" significa "Viene e Dorme" mentre "Ki-Tsune" significa "Torna Sempre".

Gli studiosi invece suggeriscono che le origini della parola "Kitsune" possano essere dovute ad un'onomatopea: "Kitsu" era il verso delle volpi secondo i giapponesi, un po' come "Bau" è il verso del cane secondo gli italiani. "-Ne" è traducibile come "Rumore" perciò "Kitsune" identificherebbe l'animale attraverso il suo verso; però "Kitsu" non è più usato per indicare il verso della volpe da molto tempo, se mai lo è stato; i giapponesi moderni trascrivono il verso della volpe con "Kon Kon" o "Gon Gon."

Kitsunetsuki [modifica]

Kitsunetsuki letteralmente significa "Posseduto dalla Volpe". Si credeva che la volpe potesse entrare nel corpo delle sue vittime, generalmente giovani donne, attraverso l'unghia o il seno. In alcuni casi, sembra che i tratti del viso del posseduto cambiassero leggermente in modo da somigliare ad una volpe. Secondo la tradizione giapponese i posseduti analfabeti sapevano improvvisamente leggere e scrivere.

Lafcadio Hearn descrive questa condizione nella sua Favola Giapponese:
« Strana è la follia di coloro in cui entra un demone volpe. Talvolta corrono nudi gridando per le strade. Talvolta giacciono e con la bava alla bocca, ululano come ululano le volpi. E su alcune parti del corpo del posseduto compare un bozzo mobile sotto la pelle, che sembra avere una vita tutta sua. Pungilo con un ago, e istantaneamente scivola in un altro posto. In nessuna presa può essere così strettamente compresso da una mano forte che non scivoli da sotto le dita. La gente posseduta si dice che parli e scriva in lingue di cui erano completamente all'oscuro prima della possessione. Mangiano solo ciò che sembra piacere alle volpi e ne mangiano una gran quantità, come se non loro, ma la volpe che li possiede, sia affamata. »

Le vittime di Kitsunetsuki erano trattate con gran crudeltà nella speranza che la Kitsune se ne andasse di sua volontà. Non era insolito che fossero picchiati o gravemente ustionati. Intere famiglie furono emarginate dalle loro comunità dopo che si diffuse la convinzione che uno di loro fosse posseduto.

In Giappone, Kitsunetsuki era una diagnosi comune per la follia fino al XX secolo; la possessione era la spiegazione per il comportamento anormale che mostravano gli individui colpiti.

Kitsunetsuki è anche una psicosi etnica che esiste solo nella cultura giapponese, in cui le vittime credono di essere possedute da una volpe; tra i sintomi l'ossessione per il riso e i fagioli rossi, apatia, irrequietezza, e avversione per il contatto visivo. Può essere considerato una forma di licantropia clinica.

Kitsune nella cultura popolare [modifica]

Radicate nel folklore, le Kitsune sono comparse in molte opere giapponesi contemporanee. Nei manga e negli anime, le Kitsune sono spesso rappresentate in maniera simile alle donne-gatto, femmine, seducenti, e amanti degli alcolici. Tra le altre rappresentazioni:

* Due Pokémon, Vulpix e Ninetales, derivano dalla Kyubi della mitologia. In un episodio Ninetales si trasforma in donna, ma senza riflesso, come un vampiro, e cerca di 'sedurre' Brock; inoltre fa la guardia ad una sfera simile alla Hoshi no Tama delle Kitsune.
* Il Digimon Renamon e la sua forma digievoluta della terza stagione dell'anime Digimon (noto anche come Digimon Tamers) era ispirato alla Kitsune.
* Il gioco per SNES/Super Famicom Shadowrun ha un personaggio sciamano di nome Kitsune, che può trasformarsi in volpe e ha poteri magici.
* In Mega Man X: Command Mission c'è un gruppo di 9 boss segreti, da OneTail a NineTails, ognuno con l'aspetto di volpe antropomorfa con il relativo numero di code.
* In Ragnarok Online, la Kitsune è un potente mostro chiamato "Ninetails", ed un boss chiamato Moonlight Flower.
* Nel gioco di carte collezionabili Magic: The Gathering, la Kitsune appare tra i Campioni di Kamigawa come una razza di nobili volpi antropomorfe.
* Miles "Tails" Prower, compagno di Sonic the Hedgehog, è una Kitsune con due code che gli permettono di volare.
* Shippo, personaggio di Inuyasha, è un cucciolo di Kitsune; è capace di trasformarsi attraverso una foglia sulla testa, in uno stile più simile a un Tanuki.
* Lo spirito di una Kyūbi no Kitsune, chiamata Kyūbi no Yōko, fu imprigionata nel corpo di Naruto Uzumaki, protagonista di Naruto. Naruto ha baffi simili a quelli di una volpe sulla faccia e una personalità scherzosa, tratti che ricordano un Kitsunetsuki.
* Shuichi Minamino - alter ego umano di Kurama, tra i protagonisti di Yu Degli Spettri - è la reincarnazione di una Kyūbi no Kitsune di nome Yoko Kurama.
* Konno Mitsune di Love Hina è quasi sempre chiamata Kitsune per la sua natura scherzosa, il suo amore per gli alcolici, e gli occhi quasi sempre chiusi, che le conferiscono un aspetto volpino.
* La storia della volpe a nove code è raccontata da Shuri Kurogane in Ran, la reinterpretazione epica di Re Lear da parte di Akira Kurosawa.
* In Usagi Yojimbo c'è un personaggio femminile dai tratti volpini di nome Kitsune, provetta ladra.
* Nel videogioco Ōkami, sull'Oni Island, compare una Kyūbi no Kitsune.
* Nel manga Ushio e Tora, c'è una Volpe a Nove Code (viene chiamata Maschera Bianca). Il suo obiettivo è la conquista del mondo, uccidendo tutti i mostri e lasciando in vita gli umani per vederli soffrire.
* Nel manga Slam Dunk di Takehiko Inoue il personaggio di Kaede Rukawa è soprannominato Kitsune dal suo compagno di squadra Hanamichi Sakuragi.
* Nel manga Mikami Agenzia Acchiappafantasmi c'è una giovane Kitsune di nome Tamamo che quando è in forma umana ha nove codini dietro la testa; il personaggio è ispirato a Tamamo no Mae (玉藻前, Tamamo no Mae?), protagonista di uno dei racconti dell'Otogizōshi, di cui lei sarebbe la reincarnazione.
* In Lamù compare una piccola Kitsune col tascapane che, innamorata di Shinobu, la segue trasformadosi di volta in volta per aiutarla. La volpe tuttavia è ancora molto inesperta e quando prende le sembianze degli altri non riesce né a nascondere le sua coda, né ad emularne le dimensioni, diventando così una grottesca caricatura degli altri personaggi.
* Nel manga Gantz, un Kitsune appare come potente boss assieme ad altre due Yokai , il Tengu e il Nurarihyon.
* Nel manga di Akira Toriyama, Kajika, il protagonista è affiancato da uno spirito volpe che lui stesso ha ucciso per sbaglio e da cui è stato maledetto. Da qui il ragazzo deve, per riuscire a liberarsi della maledizione che lo ha trasformato in un Han'yō, un ibrido mezzo uomo e mezzo volpe, salvare 1000 esseri viventi.
* Nel manga e anime Kenshin Samurai vagabondo, Takani Megumi è soprannominata "Kitsune".
* Nell'anime ARIA The NATURAL (e nel manga ARIA di Kozue Amano) appare un matrimonio fra volpi in un giorno di pioggia a ciel sereno (episodio 5).
* In Kyatto Ninden Teyandee il cattivo principale è una volpe di nome Kitsunezuka Ko'on no Kami.
* Nel MMORPG Metin2 nella mappa del Monte Sohan è presente un mostro boss chiamato "Nove Code". Viene raffigurato come una Kitsune bianca a nove code in piedi sulle zampe posteriori.
* Nel manwha SIN di Kim Hwan un giovane personaggio femminile di nome Kumiho è un demone volpe dalle nove code (in lingua coreana kumiho significa letteralmente volpe dalle nove code).
* Nel videogioco The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask appare lo spettro di una volpe gialla a tre code, chiamato Keaton, che sottoporrà al giocatore diversi indovinelli.
* Nel MMORPG Ultima Online, è presente un mostro chiamato Bake Kitsune, una volpe che usa l'arte della magia.
* Nel manga e anime Kanokon, Chizuru Minamoto, una dei protagonisti, è in realtà uno spirito volpe capace di nascondere le proprie caratteristiche "animali", lo stesso vale per suo fratello Tayura e per sua madre, che è addirittura una volpe a nove code.
* Nei videogiochi Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga e Mario & Luigi: Fratelli nel tempo, sono presenti delle creature chiamate "canotti". Somigliano ad un incrocio tra una volpe e un Goomba e, durante gli scontri, possono trasformarsi in altre creature, oggetti o personaggi.

Altri significati [modifica]

* La pioggia a ciel sereno è chiamata in Giappone Kitsune no Yomeiri o "Il Matrimonio della Volpe" in riferimento ad una favola che descrive un matrimonio tra queste creature in simili condizioni climatiche. L'evento è considerato buon segno, ma secondo la tradizione se un malcapitato dovesse assistere alla cerimonia le volpi lo perseguiterebbero tutta la vita per avere vendetta. Questa leggenda è descritta anche in un episodio del film Sogni di Akira Kurosawa
* C'è un piatto della cucina giapponese chiamato Kitsune Udon: una varietà di zuppa udon così chiamata perché si dice che le volpi siano particolarmente ghiotte del tofu fritto (aburaage o usuage) in essa contenuto.
* Kitsuné è anche il nome di un'etichetta discografica francese, specializzata in Musica House, Disco ed Electro, oltre a un po' di Musica Pop.
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Femminile Serpente
Numero di messaggi : 1826
Data d'iscrizione : 22.03.10
Età : 39
Località : Prov. CN

MessaggioOggetto: Re: Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità   Sab 6 Nov 2010 - 16:50


Thoughts on Fox Meanings, Fox Totems and Animal Symbolism Related to the Fox

In China, fox animal symbolism revolved around the afterlife. Lore has it that a fox sighting was thought to be a signal from the spirits of the deceased.

Fox animal symbolism takes a turn of intelligence in the Celtic realm, as the Celts believed the fox to be a guide, and was honored for its wisdom. The Celts understood the fox knows the woods intimately, and they would rely upon the fox as their guide in the spirit world.

In Japan, the fox was considered one of the rain spirits, and a messenger of Inari the rice god. Here the fox also symbolizes longevity and protection from evil.

In Native American lore, fox animal symbolism deals with two interpretations. One perspective (Northern tribes) observes the fox as a wise and noble messenger. The other (Plains tribes) views the fox as a trickster playing pranks, or worse - luring one to demise.

Overwhelmingly, cultural consensus on fox animal symbolism deals with:

* cunning
* strategy
* quick-thinking
* adaptability
* cleverness
* wisdom

It is noteworthy to observe the fox while it is on the hunt. We see its entire body is pointed like an arrow - straight and tightly aimed. This is a symbolic message for us to set a determined, and powerfully focused mindset in order to "hit the target" of our desires.

The red in the fox is representative of a solar emblem. As a solar emblem the fox animal symbolism deals with:

* passion
* desire
* intensity
* expression

The fox encourages us to think outside of the box and use our intelligence in different, creative ways. The fox also brings us a message to try to approach our circumstances differently that we normally would. Be aware of some of our habits, and try a different angle of action.

The fox also a reminder that we must utilize all of our resources (seen and unseen) in order to accomplish our goals. Sometimes this means calling upon some unorthodox methods.

Furthermore, the fox is a sign to be mindful of our surroundings.

Phenomenally effective shapeshifters and incredibly adaptable, the fox beckons us to not make too many waves but rather, adapt to our surroundings, blend into it, and use our surroundings (and circumstances) to our advantage.

Other generalized fox symbolic meanings deal with

* focus
* determination
* right-action

It should be obvious from this summary that fox animal symbolism goes far beyond what we may see on the surface. On the contrary, the fox has an incredible amount of knowledge and wisdom to share with us if/when we are willing to be still for the teachings.

Spend some meditative time with the spirit of the fox - odds are you will be amazed at the powerful insight this regal creature has to offer you.

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Iniziato Sciamano
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Femminile Serpente
Numero di messaggi : 1826
Data d'iscrizione : 22.03.10
Età : 39
Località : Prov. CN

MessaggioOggetto: Re: Volpe: magia della mimetizzazione e dell'invisibilità   Mar 5 Lug 2011 - 14:55

Buon pomeriggio a tutti,

riporto altri documenti di wikipedia che trattano della mitologia legata a questo animale, di alcuni inserisco solo qualche stralcio perciò se ne consiglia la visione anche al link originale, si consiglia inoltre la visione del seguente link interno del forum molto interessante dedicato ai miti cinesi e precisamente allo spirito volpe Huli jing.

Buona lettura!


Prince Hanzoku terrorized by a nine-tailed fox. Print by Utagawa Kuniyoshi, 19th century.

Kitsune (狐?, IPA: [kitsɯne] ( listen)) is the Japanese word for fox. Foxes are a common subject of Japanese folklore; in English, kitsune refers to them in this context. Stories depict them as intelligent beings and as possessing magical abilities that increase with their age and wisdom. Foremost among these is the ability to assume human form. While some folktales speak of kitsune employing this ability to trick others—as foxes in folklore often do—other stories portray them as faithful guardians, friends, lovers, and wives.

Foxes and human beings lived close together in ancient Japan; this companionship gave rise to legends about the creatures. Kitsune have become closely associated with Inari, a Shinto kami or spirit, and serve as its messengers. This role has reinforced the fox's supernatural significance. The more tails a kitsune has—they may have as many as nine—the older, wiser, and more powerful it is. Because of their potential power and influence, some people make offerings to them as to a deity.


It is widely agreed that many fox myths in Japan can be traced to China, Korea, or India. Chinese folk tales tell of fox spirits (called Huli-jing) that may have up to nine tails, or Kyūbi no Kitsune in Japanese. Many of the earliest surviving stories are recorded in the Konjaku Monogatari, an 11th-century collection of Chinese, Indian, and Japanese narratives.[1]

There is debate whether the kitsune myths originated entirely from foreign sources or are in part an indigenous Japanese concept dating as far back as the fifth century BC. Japanese folklorist Kiyoshi Nozaki argues that the Japanese regarded kitsune positively as early as the 4th century A.D.; the only things imported from China or Korea were the kitsune's negative attributes.[2] He states that, according to a 16th-century book of records called the Nihon Ryakki, foxes and human beings lived close together in ancient Japan, and he contends that indigenous legends about the creatures arose as a result.[3] Inari scholar Karen Smyers notes that the idea of the fox as seductress and the connection of the fox myths to Buddhism were introduced into Japanese folklore through similar Chinese stories, but she maintains that some fox stories contain elements unique to Japan.[4]


The full etymology is unknown. The oldest known usage of the word is in the 794 text Shin'yaku Kegonkyō Ongi Shiki. Other old sources include Nihon Ryōiki (810–824) and Wamyō Ruijushō (c. 934). These oldest sources are written in Man'yōgana which clearly identifies the historical spelling as ki1tune. Following several diachronic phonological changes, this becomes kitsune.

Many etymological suggestions have been made; however, there is no general agreement.

Myōgoki (1268) suggests that it is so called because it is "always (tsune) yellow (ki)".
Early Kamakura period Mizukagami indicates that it means "came (ki) [perfective case particle tsu] to bedroom (ne)" due to a legend that a kitsune would change into one's wife and bear children.
Arai Hakuseki in Tōga (1717) suggests that ki means "stench", tsu is a possessive particle, and ne is related to inu, the word for "dog".
Tanikawa Kotosuga in Wakun no Shiori (1777–1887) suggests that ki means "yellow", tsu is a possessive particle, and ne is related to neko, the word for cat.
Ōtsuki Fumihiko in Daigenkai (1932–1935) proposes that kitsu is an onomatopoeia for the animal, and that ne is an affix or an honorific word meaning a servant of an Inari shrine.

According to Nozaki, the word kitsune was originally onomatopoeia.[3] Kitsu represented a fox's yelp and came to be the general word for fox. -Ne signifies an affectionate mood, which Nozaki presents as further evidence of an established, non-imported tradition of benevolent foxes in Japanese folklore.[2] Kitsu is now archaic; in modern Japanese, a fox's cry is transcribed as kon kon or gon gon.

One of the oldest surviving kitsune tales provides a widely known folk etymology of the word kitsune.[5] Unlike most tales of kitsune who become human and marry human males, this one does not end tragically:[6][7]

Ono, an inhabitant of Mino (says an ancient Japanese legend of A.D. 545), spent the seasons longing for his ideal of female beauty. He met her one evening on a vast moor and married her. Simultaneously with the birth of their son, Ono's dog was delivered of a pup which as it grew up became more and more hostile to the lady of the moors. She begged her husband to kill it, but he refused. At last one day the dog attacked her so furiously that she lost courage, resumed vulpine shape, leaped over a fence and fled.

"You may be a fox," Ono called after her, "but you are the mother of my son and I love you. Come back when you please; you will always be welcome."

So every evening she stole back and slept in his arms.[5]

Because the fox returns to her husband each night as a woman but leaves each morning as a fox, she is called Kitsune. In classical Japanese, kitsu-ne means come and sleep, and ki-tsune means always comes.[7]


Kitsune are believed to possess superior intelligence, long life, and magical powers. They are a type of yōkai, or spiritual entity, and the word kitsune is often translated as fox spirit. However, this does not mean that kitsune are ghosts, nor that they are fundamentally different from regular foxes. Because the word spirit is used to reflect a state of knowledge or enlightenment, all long-lived foxes gain supernatural abilities[4]

There are two common classifications of kitsune. The zenko (善狐?, literally good foxes) are benevolent, celestial foxes associated with the god Inari; they are sometimes simply called Inari foxes. On the other hand, the yako (野狐?, literally field foxes, also called nogitsune) tend to be mischievous or even malicious.[8] Local traditions add further types.[9] For example, a ninko is an invisible fox spirit that human beings can only perceive when it possesses them. Another tradition classifies kitsune into one of thirteen types defined by which supernatural abilities the kitsune possesses.[10][11]

Physically, kitsune are noted for having as many as nine tails.[12] Generally, a greater number of tails indicates an older and more powerful fox; in fact, some folktales say that a fox will only grow additional tails after it has lived 100 years.[13] One, five, seven, and nine tails are the most common numbers in folk stories.[14] When a kitsune gains its ninth tail, its fur becomes white or gold.[12] These kyūbi no kitsune (九尾の狐?, nine-tailed foxes) gain the abilities to see and hear anything happening anywhere in the world. Other tales attribute them infinite wisdom (omniscience).[15]


A kitsune may take on human form, an ability learned when it reaches a certain age—usually 100 years, although some tales say 50.[13] As a common prerequisite for the transformation, the fox must place reeds, a broad leaf, or a skull over its head.[16] Common forms assumed by kitsune include beautiful women, young girls, or elderly men. These shapes are not limited by the fox's age or gender,[4] and a kitsune can duplicate the appearance of a specific person.[17] Foxes are particularly renowned for impersonating beautiful women. Common belief in medieval Japan was that any woman encountered alone, especially at dusk or night, could be a fox.[18]

In some stories, kitsune have difficulty hiding their tails when they take human form; looking for the tail, perhaps when the fox gets drunk or careless, is a common method of discerning the creature's true nature.[19] Variants on the theme have the kitsune retain other foxlike traits, such as a coating of fine hair, a fox-shaped shadow, or a reflection that shows its true form.[20] Kitsune-gao or fox-faced refers to human females who have a narrow face with close-set eyes, thin eyebrows, and high cheekbones. Traditionally, this facial structure is considered attractive, and some tales ascribe it to foxes in human form.[21] Kitsune have a fear and hatred of dogs even while in human form, and some become so rattled by the presence of dogs that they revert to the shape of a fox and flee. A particularly devout individual may be able to see through a fox's disguise automatically.[22]

One folk story illustrating these imperfections in the kitsune's human shape concerns Koan, a historical person credited with wisdom and magical powers of divination. According to the story, he was staying at the home of one of his devotees when he scalded his foot entering a bath because the water had been drawn too hot. Then, "in his pain, he ran out of the bathroom naked. When the people of the household saw him, they were astonished to see that Koan had fur covering much of his body, along with a fox's tail. Then Koan transformed in front of them, becoming an elderly fox and running away."[23]

Other supernatural abilities commonly attributed to the kitsune include possession, mouths or tails that generate fire or lightning (known as kitsune-bi; literally, fox-fire), willful manifestation in the dreams of others, flight, invisibility, and the creation of illusions so elaborate as to be almost indistinguishable from reality.[16][20] Some tales speak of kitsune with even greater powers, able to bend time and space, drive people mad, or take fantastic shapes such as a tree of incredible height or a second moon in the sky.[24][25] Other kitsune have characteristics reminiscent of vampires or succubi and feed on the life or spirit of human beings, generally through sexual contact.[26]


Kitsunetsuki (狐憑き or 狐付き; also written kitsune-tsuki) literally means the state of being possessed by a fox. The victim is always a young woman, whom the fox enters beneath her fingernails or through her breasts.[27] In some cases, the victims' facial expressions are said to change in such a way that they resemble those of a fox. Japanese tradition holds that fox possession can cause illiterate victims to temporarily gain the ability to read.[28] Though foxes in folklore can possess a person of their own will, Kitsunetsuki is often attributed to the malign intents of hereditary fox employers, or tsukimono-suji.[29]

Folklorist Lafcadio Hearn describes the condition in the first volume of his Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan:

Strange is the madness of those into whom demon foxes enter. Sometimes they run naked shouting through the streets. Sometimes they lie down and froth at the mouth, and yelp as a fox yelps. And on some part of the body of the possessed a moving lump appears under the skin, which seems to have a life of its own. Prick it with a needle, and it glides instantly to another place. By no grasp can it be so tightly compressed by a strong hand that it will not slip from under the fingers. Possessed folk are also said to speak and write languages of which they were totally ignorant prior to possession. They eat only what foxes are believed to like — tofu, aburagé, azukimeshi, etc. — and they eat a great deal, alleging that not they, but the possessing foxes, are hungry.[30]

He goes on to note that, once freed from the possession, the victim will never again be able to eat tofu, azukimeshi, or other foods favored by foxes.

Exorcism, often performed at an Inari shrine, may induce a fox to leave its host.[31] In the past, when such gentle measures failed or a priest was not available, victims of kitsunetsuki were beaten or badly burned in hopes of forcing the fox to leave. Entire families were ostracized by their communities after a member of the family was thought to be possessed.[30]

In Japan, kitsunetsuki was noted as a disease as early as the Heian period and remained a common diagnosis for mental illness until the early 20th century.[32][33] Possession was the explanation for the abnormal behavior displayed by the afflicted individuals. In the late 19th century, Dr. Shunichi Shimamura noted that physical diseases that caused fever were often considered kitsunetsuki.[34] The belief has lost favor, but stories of fox possession still appear in the tabloid press and popular media.[citation needed] One notable occasion involved allegations that members of the Aum Shinrikyo cult had been possessed.[35]

In medicine, kitsunetsuki is an ethnic psychosis unique to Japanese culture. Those who suffer from the condition believe they are possessed by a fox.[36] Symptoms include cravings for rice or sweet red beans, listlessness, restlessness, and aversion to eye contact. Kitsunetsuki is similar to but distinct from clinical lycanthropy.[37]

Hoshi no tama (ほしのたま)

Kitsune glowing with fox-fire gather near Edo. Print by Hiroshige.

Depictions of kitsune or their possessed victims may feature round or onion-shaped white balls known as hoshi no tama (star balls). Tales describe these as glowing with kitsune-bi, or fox-fire.[38] Some stories identify them as magical jewels or pearls.[39] When not in human form or possessing a human, a kitsune keeps the ball in its mouth or carries it on its tail.[13] Jewels are a common symbol of Inari, and representations of sacred Inari foxes without them are rare.[40]

One belief is that when a kitsune changes shape, its hoshi no tama holds a portion of its magical power. Another tradition is that the pearl represents the kitsune's soul; the kitsune will die if separated from it for long. Those who obtain the ball may be able to extract a promise from the kitsune to help them in exchange for its return.[41] For example, a 12th-century tale describes a man using a fox's hoshi no tama to secure a favor:

"Confound you!" snapped the fox. "Give me back my ball!" The man ignored its pleas till finally it said tearfully, "All right, you've got the ball, but you don't know how to keep it. It won't be any good to you. For me, it's a terrible loss. I tell you, if you don't give it back, I'll be your enemy forever. If you do give it back though, I'll stick to you like a protector god."

The fox later saves his life by leading him past a band of armed robbers.[42]


Servants of Inari

Kitsune are associated with Inari, the Shinto deity of rice.[43] This association has reinforced the fox's supernatural significance.[44] Originally, kitsune were Inari's messengers, but the line between the two is now blurred so that Inari itself may be depicted as a fox. Likewise, entire shrines are dedicated to kitsune, where devotees can leave offerings.[9] Fox spirits are said to be particularly fond of a fried sliced tofu called aburage, which is accordingly found in the noodle-based dishes kitsune udon and kitsune soba. Similarly, Inari-zushi is a type of sushi named for Inari that consists of rice-filled pouches of fried tofu.[45] There is speculation among folklorists as to whether another Shinto fox deity existed in the past. Foxes have long been worshipped as kami.[46]

Inari's kitsune are white, a color of good omen.[9] They possess the power to ward off evil, and they sometimes serve as guardian spirits. In addition to protecting Inari shrines, they are petitioned to intervene on behalf of the locals and particularly to aid against troublesome nogitsune, those spirit foxes who do not serve Inari. Black foxes and nine-tailed foxes are likewise considered good omens.[19]

According to beliefs derived from fusui (feng shui), the fox's power over evil is such that a mere statue of a fox can dispel the evil kimon, or energy, that flows from the northeast. Many Inari shrines, such as the famous Fushimi Inari shrine in Kyoto, feature such statues, sometimes large numbers of them.

Kitsune are connected to the Buddhist religion through the Dakiniten, goddesses conflated with Inari's female aspect. Dakiniten is depicted as a female boddhisattva wielding a sword and riding a flying white fox.[47]


The Fushimi Inari shrine in Kyoto features numerous kitsune statues.

Kitsune are often presented as tricksters, with motives that vary from mischief to malevolence. Stories tell of kitsune playing tricks on overly proud samurai, greedy merchants, and boastful commoners, while the crueler ones abuse poor tradesmen and farmers or devout Buddhist monks. Their victims are usually men; women are possessed instead.[18] For example, kitsune are thought to employ their kitsune-bi or fox-fire to lead travelers astray in the manner of a will o' the wisp.[48][49] Another tactic is for the kitsune to confuse its target with illusions or visions.[18] Other common goals of trickster kitsune include seduction, theft of food, humiliation of the prideful, or vengeance for a perceived slight.

A traditional game called kitsune-ken (fox-fist) references the kitsune's powers over human beings. The game is similar to rock, paper, scissors, but the three hand positions signify a fox, a hunter, and a village headman. The headman beats the hunter, whom he outranks; the hunter beats the fox, whom he shoots; the fox beats the headman, whom he bewitches.[50][51]

This ambiguous portrayal, coupled with their reputation for vengefulness, leads people to try to discover a troublesome fox's motives. In one case, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, the effective leader of Japan, wrote a letter to the kami Inari:

To Inari Daimyojin,

My lord, I have the honor to inform you that one of the foxes under your jurisdiction has bewitched one of my servants, causing her and others a great deal of trouble. I have to request that you make minute inquiries into the matter, and endeavor to find out the reason of your subject misbehaving in this way, and let me know the result.

If it turns out that the fox has no adequate reason to give for his behavior, you are to arrest and punish him at once. If you hesitate to take action in this matter I shall issue orders for the destruction of every fox in the land. Any other particulars that you may wish to be informed of in reference to what has occurred, you can learn from the high priest of Yoshida.[52]

Kitsune keep their promises and strive to repay any favor. Occasionally a kitsune attaches itself to a person or household, where they can cause all sorts of mischief. In one story from the 12th century, only the homeowner's threat to exterminate the foxes convinces them to behave. The kitsune patriarch appears in the man's dreams:

"My father lived here before me, sir, and by now I have many children and grandchildren. They get into a lot of mischief, I'm afraid, and I'm always after them to stop, but they never listen. And now, sir, you're understandably fed up with us. I gather that you're going to kill us all. But I just want you to know, sir, how sorry I am that this is our last night of life. Won't you pardon us, one more time? If we ever make trouble again, then of course you must act as you think best. But the young ones, sir — I'm sure they'll understand when I explain to them why you're so upset. We'll do everything we can to protect you from now on, if only you'll forgive us, and we'll be sure to let you know when anything good is going to happen!"[53]

Other kitsune use their magic for the benefit of their companion or hosts as long as the human beings treat them with respect. As yōkai, however, kitsune do not share human morality, and a kitsune who has adopted a house in this manner may, for example, bring its host money or items that it has stolen from the neighbors. Accordingly, common households thought to harbor kitsune are treated with suspicion.[54] Oddly, samurai families were often reputed to share similar arrangements with kitsune, but these foxes were considered zenko and the use of their magic a sign of prestige.[55] Abandoned homes were common haunts for kitsune.[18] One 12th-century story tells of a minister moving into an old mansion only to discover a family of foxes living there. They first try to scare him away, then claim that the house "has been ours for many years, and . . . we wish to register a vigorous protest." The man refuses, and the foxes resign themselves to moving to an abandoned lot nearby.[56]

Tales distinguish kitsune gifts from kitsune payments. If a kitsune offers a payment or reward that includes money or material wealth, part or all of the sum will consist of old paper, leaves, twigs, stones, or similar valueless items under a magical illusion.[57][58] True kitsune gifts are usually intangibles, such as protection, knowledge, or long life.[58]

Wives and lovers

Kitsune are commonly portrayed as lovers, usually in stories involving a young human male and a kitsune who takes the form of a human woman.[59] The kitsune may be a seductress, but these stories are more often romantic in nature.[60] Typically, the young man unknowingly marries the fox, who proves a devoted wife. The man eventually discovers the fox's true nature, and the fox-wife is forced to leave him. In some cases, the husband wakes as if from a dream, filthy, disoriented, and far from home. He must then return to confront his abandoned family in shame.

Many stories tell of fox-wives bearing children. When such progeny are human, they possess special physical or supernatural qualities that often pass to their own children.[19] The astrologer-magician Abe no Seimei was reputed to have inherited such extraordinary powers.[61]

Other stories tell of kitsune marrying one another. Rain falling from a clear sky — a sunshower — is called kitsune no yomeiri or the kitsune's wedding, in reference to a folktale describing a wedding ceremony between the creatures being held during such conditions.[62] The event is considered a good omen, but the kitsune will seek revenge on any uninvited guests.[63]

Stephen Turnbull, in "Nagashino 1575", relates the tale of the Takeda clan's involvement with a fox-woman. The warlord Takeda Shingen, in 1544, defeated in battle a lesser local warlord named Suwa Yorishige and drove him to suicide after a "humiliating and spurious" peace conference, after which Shingen forced marriage on Suwa Yorishige's beautiful 14-year-old daughter Lady Koi—Shingen's own niece. Shingen, Turnbull writes, "was so obsessed with the girl that his superstitious followers became alarmed and believed her to be an incarnation of the white fox-spirit of the Suwa Shrine, who had bewitched him in order to gain revenge." When their son Takeda Katsuyori proved to be a disastrous leader and led the clan to their devastating defeat at the battle of Nagashino, Turnbull writes, "wise old heads nodded, remembering the unhappy circumstances of his birth and his magical mother".
[edit] In fiction

Embedded in Japanese folklore as they are, kitsune appear in numerous Japanese works. Noh, kyogen, bunraku, and kabuki plays derived from folk tales feature them,[64][65] as do contemporary works such as anime, manga and video games. Western authors of fiction have begun to make use of the kitsune legends.[66] Although these portrayals vary considerably, kitsune are generally depicted in accordance with folk stories, as wise, cunning, and powerful beings.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The gumiho (구미호 / 구 "gu" - nine) (literally "nine tailed fox") is a creature that appears in the oral tales and legends of Korea,[1], and are akin to European faeries. According to those tales, a fox that lives a thousand years turns into a kumiho, like its Japanese and Chinese counterparts (the kitsune and the huli jing).[2] It can freely transform, among other things, into a beautiful girl often set out to seduce men, and eat their liver. There are numerous tales in which the kumiho appears. Several of those can be found in the encyclopedic Compendium of Korean Oral Literature (한국 구비문학 대계).


Legends tell that while the kumiho is capable of changing its appearance, there is still something persistently fox-like about it; its countenance changes, but its nature does not. In Transformation of the Kumiho (구미호의 변신), a kumiho transforms into an identical likeness of a bride at a wedding. Not even the bride's mother can tell the difference. The kumiho is only discovered when her clothes are removed. Bakh Mun-su and the Kumiho (박문수와 구미호) records an encounter that Pak Munsu has with a girl, living alone in the woods, that has a fox-like appearance. In The Maiden who Discovered a Kumiho through a Chinese Poem (한시로 구미호를 알아낸 처녀) the kumiho was ultimately revealed when a hunting dog caught the scent of the fox and attacked.

Although it is typically depicted as a woman when it transforms into a human being, the kumiho in the tale of The Maiden who Discovered a Kumiho through a Chinese Poem (한시로 구미호를 알아낸 처녀) turns into a young man that attempts to trick the maiden in marrying him. However, this is the only case in which it transforms into a man.

Although they are considered as having the ability to morph into other forms, the true identity of a Kumiho was said to be zealously guarded by the Kumihos themselves. There are also legends in which these transformations are said to be involuntary.


It is unclear at which point in time Koreans began viewing the Kumiho as a purely evil creature, since many of the ancient texts mention benevolent Kumihos assisting humans. In fact, many older texts make more frequent mentions of wicked humans tricking kind but naïve Kumihos.

As the mythology of the Kumiho evolved, it was later believed that a Kumiho had to consume human hearts in order to survive. In later literature they are often depicted as a blood-thirsty half-fox, half-human creature that wandered cemeteries at night, digging human hearts out from graves.

Like all other monsters, the Kumiho was thought to grow wise with age and with enough training, eventually learn to morph itself into various forms, including humans. Thus, they are often depicted as beautiful young maidens that trick unsuspecting men and later consume their hearts.

Another version was that the Kumiho must eat livers. This was because the liver contained the energy of a human, meaning that it processes the food and gives energy, therefore making it the container of the life force of a human. The fairy tale The Fox Sister depicts a fox spirit preying on a family for livers.

Another version of the mythology, however, holds that with enough will a Kumiho could further ascend from its Yokwe state and become fully, permanently human and lose its evil character. Explanations of how this could be achieved vary, but they sometimes include aspects such as refraining from killing or tasting meat for a thousand days, or obtaining a cintamani and making sure that the Yeoiju saw the full moon at least every month during the ordeal. Unlike Yeoiju wielding dragons, Kumiho were not thought to be capable of omnipotence or creation at will since they were lesser creatures.

The idea of a beast becoming fully human is in fact quite heavily embedded in Korean mythology, such as the case in which a bear becomes a woman through a harsh ordeal in the Dangun mythology.


A Gumiho (구미호) is one of the creatures in the category of Monster(요괴) and therefore usually not included among the seven Ghost(귀신) or God (신) categories.


In 2010, SBS broadcast a romantic comedy drama, My Girlfriend is a Nine-Tailed Fox. It is about a gumiho who escaped from the painting of Grandma Samshin after 500 years, it was made possible because of it asking a man to draw nine tails on the painting. It was revealed that 500 years before, she went down to the earth, she was said to be the prettiest woman bewitching all men around her. Wanting to be a human, she failed in finding for a husband because of rumors saying she eats human liver. When the man who freed her fell from a cliff, the gumiho saved him by giving her fox-bead. Since her bead is with him, she is to stay with him so she won't lose her aura.Near around the series a hunter who is half human comes to find her and kill her to bring her back. He falls in love with her finding that her face looked like a woman he loved years ago. He helps he become ordinary.

The drama shows that the gumiho is afraid of large bodies of water whenever her bead is not with her. A gumiho can run faster than cars, can jump high as if it is flying, never feel pain (only if the fox-bead is with her), eats meat especially cow's meat instead of livers, white in color, its eyes turn blue making them scary and showcases its nine-tails whenever the moon is present.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Nguruvilu "fox snake" (also: Guirivilo, Guruvilu, Ñuruvilu, Ñirivilu, Ñivivilu, Ñirivilo o Nirivilo; from Mapudungun ngürü "fox" and filu "snake") is a creature found in the Mapuche mythology of Chile.


The Nguruvilu originates from the native Mapuche people. It is a river-dwelling creature and looks much like a strange fox, with a long body, similar to a snake, and a long tail with fingernails that it uses like a claw; but it's a water-being. Nguruvilus live in and are the cause of dangerous whirlpools which kill people who try to cross rivers. The creatures make the water shallow on either ford, to encourage people to try to cross it making it seem safe. However, the only safe way of crossing a river with a Nguruvilu is by boat. The only way to get rid of a Nguruvilu is to get a machi "shaman" or a good kalku "sorcerer". The kalku is to be offered gifts in return for the service of Nguruvilu removal. The kalku (who may be male or female) wades through the river until he or she reaches the whirlpool and henceforth dives in. Afterwards she swims to the surface having captured the Nguruvilu in her arms with her powerful magical abilities. She then proceeded to threaten the creature with a sharp long knife or cuchillo (Spanish for knife) and threaten to mutilate the animal if it ever harms another person trying to cross the waterway. The Kalku then releases the Nguruvilu back into the water. It is important that this act is witnessed by everyone from the area. Then usually a great celebration is held and no one must fear crossing the waterway ever again. The whirlpool or whirlpools shrink and then disappear, and the fords become even shallower, making the crossing safe enough even for the frailest old woman or youngest child. It is believed the creature moves its business elsewhere, probably to torment the peoples downstream at the next popular river crossing. There is a common bedtime story about the kalku and the Nguruvilu which was included in the book Folk Tales From Chile.


Relationships with humans

In folklore and mythology

Red foxes feature prominently in the folklore and mythology of human cultures with which they are sympatric. In Greek mythology, the Teumessian fox[115] or Cadmean vixen, was a gigantic fox that was destined never to be caught. The fox was one of the children of Echidna.

In European folklore, the figure of Reynard the Fox symbolises trickery and deceit. He originally appeared (then under the name of "Reinardus") as a secondary character in the 1150 poem Ysengrimus. He reappeared in 1175 in Pierre Saint Cloud's Le Roman de Renart, and made his debut in England in Geoffrey Chaucer's The Nun's Priest's Tale. Many of Reynard's adventures may stem from actual observations on fox behaviour ; he is an enemy of the wolf and has a fondness for blackberries and grapes.[116]

Chinese folk tales tell of fox-spirits called huli jing that may have up to nine tails, or kumiho as they are known in Korea.[117] In Japanese mythology, the kitsune are fox-like spirits possessing magical abilities that increase with their age and wisdom. Foremost among these is the ability to assume human form. While some folktales speak of kitsune employing this ability to trick others, other stories portray them as faithful guardians, friends, lovers, and wives.[118]

In Arab folklore, the fox is considered a cowardly, weak, deceitful and cunning animal, said to feign death by filling its abdomen with air in order to appear bloated, then lies on its side, awaiting the approach of unwitting prey.[119]

The animal's cunning was noted by the authors of the Bible, and applied the word "fox" to false prophets (Ezekiel 13:4) and the hypocrisy of Herod Antipas (Luke 13:32).[120]

The cunning Fox is commonly found in Native American mythology, where it is portrayed as an almost constant companion to coyote. Fox, however, is a deceitful companion who often steals Coyote's food. In the Achomawi creation myth, Fox and Coyote are the co-creators of the world, who leave just before the arrival of humans. The Yurok tribe believed that Fox, in anger, captured the sun, and tied him to a hill, causing him to burn a great hole in the ground. An Inuit story tells of how Fox, portrayed as a beautiful woman, tricks a hunter into marrying her, only to resume her true form and leave after he offends her. A Menominee story tells of how Fox is an untrustworthy friend to the Wolf.[121]


Foxes in popular culture
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This article discusses foxes in culture.

Cultural connotations

In many cultures, the fox appears in folklore as a symbol of cunning and trickery, or as a familiar animal possessed of magic powers.

In Dogon mythology, the pale fox is the trickster god of the desert, who embodies chaos.[1][2]

The Medieval Norman adventurer Robert Guiscard was nicknamed "Robert the Fox" as well as the Resourceful, the Cunning, the Wily - underlining the identification of such qualities with foxes. Although this common iconism of fox as a cunning creature most probably originates in the old indo-Iranian fables gathered in the Kalīlah wa Dimnah[citation needed].

The term "foxy" in English is defined as meaning - as the obvious "having the qualities of a fox" - also "attractive" and "sexy", as well as "red-haired" [1]. And "to outfox" means "to beat in a competition of wits" , the synonym of "outguess", "outsmart" or "outwit"[2].

In Finnish mythology, the fox is depicted usually a cunning trickster, but seldom evil. The fox, while weaker, in the end outsmarts both the evil and voracious wolf and the strong but not-so-cunning bear. It symbolizes the victory of intelligence over both malevolence and brute strength.

There is a Tswana riddle that says that "Phokoje go tsela o dithetsenya" translated literally into Only the muddy fox lives meaning that, in a philosophical sense, only an active person who does not mind getting muddy gets to progress in life.

In early Mesopotamian mythology, the fox is one of the sacred animals of the goddess Ninhursag. The fox acts as her messenger.

In Chinese, Japanese, and Korean folklores, foxes (huli jing in China, kitsune in Japan, and kumiho in Korea) are powerful spirits that are known for their highly mischievous and cunning nature, and they often take on the form of female humans to seduce men. In contemporary Chinese, the word "huli jing" is often used to describe a mistress negatively in an extramarital affair. In Shinto of Japan, kitsune sometimes helps people as an errand of their deity, Inari.

The Moche people of ancient Peru worshiped animals and often depicted the fox in their art.[3] The Moche people believed the fox to be a warrior that would use his mind to fight. The fox would not ever use physical attack, only mental.

The words "fox" or "foxy" have become slang in Western societies for an individual (most often female) with sex appeal. The word "vixen", which is normally the common name for a female fox, is also used to describe an attractive woman—although, in the case of humans, "vixen" tends to imply that the woman in question has a few nasty qualities.

The fox theme is often associated with transformation in European and East Asian literature. There are three main types of fox stories:

Description of life of more or less realistic animals
Stories about anthropomorphic animals imbued with human characteristics
Tales of fox transformations into humans and vice versa
The word shenanigan (a deceitful confidence trick, or mischief) is considered to be derived from the Irish expression sionnachuighim, meaning "I play the fox."[3]

In the Middle Ages and even into the Renaissance, foxes, which were associated with wiliness and fraudulent behavior, were sometimes burned as symbols of the Devil.[4]

A pair of European red foxes at the British Wildlife Centre, Surrey, England
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