Real Name: Kodomo-no-inari

Occupation: God of rice and prosperity, messenger-god

Legal Status: Citizen of Ama

Identity: The general populace of Earth is unaware of Inari except as a mythological character.

Other Aliases: O-Inari, Oinari-sama, Yeta (mortal guise), Uka-no-Mitama-no-Mikoto

Place of Birth: possibly Kyoto (now part of modern Japan)

Marital Status: Widowed, now Remarried

Known Relatives: Takamimusubi (father), Amaterasu (mother), Himiko, Homimi, Nioo (brothers), Ninigi, Hiruko (nephews), Uzumei (neice), Shinatsukiko, Tsukiyomi, Susanowo, Kagutsuchi, Emma-O, Minato-o-kami, Hiruko, Takamikazuchi (uncles), Shina-no-tobe, Kawanokami, Wakahirume, Haniyasuhime (aunts), Uke-Mochi (aunt/wife, deceased), Benten (second wife), Izanagi (grandfather), Izanami (grandmother), Kumari (cousin),

Group Affiliation: The Kami (Gods of Japan)

Base of Operations: Ama

First Appearance: Ares #4

History: Inari is the son of Takamimusubi and Amaterasu, rulers of an extra-dimensional race of beings known as the Amatsu-kami who were worshipped as gods by the Ainu, the ancestors of modern people Japan. Amaterasu was granted rule over Ancient Japan when Izanagi, the Ruler of the Japanese gods, departed Earth. Amaterasu became the ancestral goddess of the Japanese gods, sharing her rule with Tsukiyomi, the moon-god, and Susanowo, the storm-god. Amaterasu reportedly had several lovers, but she became the wife of the sky-god, Takamimusubi, and conceived several children by him. Among her children, Inari was worshipped as the god of rice and prosperity. His brother, Homimi, became the father of Ninigi, who inherited the throne of Emperor of Japan when Amaterasu departed from Earth to join her father in Ama, the other-dimensional realm of the Japanese Gods.

Inari eventually became the husband and consort of the food-goddess, Uke-Mochi, but she was slain by Susanowo, the sea-god, who was offended by her mystical ability to summon food from her body. In her absence, Inari stepped in to replace her as protector of the rice crop. In Shinto Religion, worship of Inari was merged with worship of Uke-Mochi and Inari's worshippers learned to honor him in both male and female forms. Sometime after Uke-Mochi's demise, Inari took the love-goddess Benten as his wife.

Unlike the majority of Earth’s gods, Inari and the Amatsu-kami have been worshipped by the Japanese well into the Twentieth Century. In recent years, Mikaboshi, the god of evil, recovered the Grasscutter Sword from Earth lost by Susanowo, the storm-god. The sword had been a gift to the Imperial Family of Japan for centuries, but when the empire fell during World War Two, it was hidden away in a heavily guarded temple where Mikaboshi lead demonic armies to acquire it for him. The sword was protected by those samurai who had lost their lives to it, but Thor and the Asgardian Gods eventually freed it. They were unable to safely protect it as Asgard, the home of the Asgardian gods, was frequently invaded by other threats, such as Morgan le Fay, who scattered the relics of Asgard on Earth as she seized the Twilight Sword to remake the Earth to her liking. Thor eventually led the Avengers against Morgan and reclaimed the Twilight Sword.

Using the Grasscutter Sword, Mikaboshi severed Ameno-kihasi-date, the bridge connecting Ama, the home of the Japanese gods, to Earth and unleashed the demons of Yomi upon Ama. Several of the Kami either lost their lives in the bloodshed or were forced into hiding in other dimensions. Bishamon the war-god protected Inari and a small group of the Kami as they retreated to safety. Mikaboshi then turned his attention to the other gods of Earth and lead an attack on the Olympian gods as the Asgardians gods had already succumbed to Ragnarok or Twilight of the Gods. Acting as a messenger, Inari soon rallied with Hermes, the messenger-god, to unite their two pantheons against Mikaboshi in order to preserve both their pantheons. However, neither the Kami nor the Olympians truly trusted each other and Inari had to resort to use trickery and deception in uniting the two pantheons against their common foe. When Inari visited Olympus after Mikaboshi’s first attack, his offer for the Kami to come to their aide was refused by Ares the war-god who in his misgivings against the Japanese god turned down his offer. Possibly sensing his distrust, Inari requested water to quench his thirst. Hermes offered him the water, but instead of drinking it, Inari actually returned with it to the hiding place of the other Kami rescued by Bishamon, giving the water as a gift to Kumari, the water-goddess. Accepting the gift, Kumari along with Inari and the Amatsu-kami led by Bishamon finally rallied with the Olympian gods against Mikaboshi and defeated him. Kumari returned the honor of what she considered a gift by granting water to Poseidon, the Olympian sea-god, and joined her powers with his to conjure a flood to fill Yomi and defeat Mikaboshi who was washed away in the storm. Inari and Hermes were pleased to see their scheme succeed and became close friends afterward.

In the absence of Izanagi, king of the Amatsu-Kami, Bishamon became the acting ruler of the Japanese gods with Inari by his side, but which of the Amatsu-kami have survived and their subsequent whereabouts are is unrevealed.

Height: 5’ 10”
Weight: 325 lbs.
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Black

Strength Level: Inari possesses superhuman strength enabling her to lift (press) 25 tons under optimal conditions.

Known Superhuman Powers: Inari possesses the conventional physical attributes of the Amatsu-kami or Gods of Japan. Like all of the Kami, he is extremely long-lived, but he is not immortal like the Olympian gods. He has not aged since reaching adulthood and cannot die by any conventional means. He is immune to all Earthly diseases and is resistant to conventional injury. If he were somehow wounded, his godly life force would enable him to recover with superhuman speed. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it dispersed a major portion of his bodily molecules to cause him a physical death. Even then, it might be possible for a god of significant power, such as Izanagi, Takamimusubi or Susanowo or for a number of Japanese gods of equal power working together to revive him. Though not quite as powerful as the Olympian or Asgardian gods, the Amatsu-kami have greater speed, reflexes and responses. Inari also possesses superhuman strength and his Kami metabolism provides him with far greater than human endurance in all physical activities. (Kami flesh and bone is about three times as dense as similar human tissue, contributing to the superhuman strength and weight of the Gods of Japan.)

Inari also has limited mystical skills enabling him to traverse between alternate dimensions and to change and alter his form. In Ancient Japan, he was known to take on a female form to mortals.

Abilities: Inari is an excellent warrior with a fighting style that incorporates aspects resembling the martial arts.

Weapons: Inari carries an enchanted wooden staff

Pets: Inari is often attended by two foxes that act as his messengers.

Comments: This profile largely describes Bishamon as he has been seen in the Marvel Universe; he has not yet been seen in the DC Universe.

In Japanese myth, Bishamon represented a blue-faced warrior clad in full armor. His attributes include a spear and a pagoda, a symbol of religious devotion.

In Marvel Comics, Inari seems to have been confused as a messenger-deity; Japanese myth has three messenger-gods: Kunadono, Michinokami and Chiburinokami.

It is unrevealed if Inari is meant to be O-inari from Wolverine: Soultaker#4

Inari should not be confused with:

Last updated: 10-8-08


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