Uchide no kozuchi
Uchide-no-Kozuchi (打ち出の小槌) is a legendary Japanese hammer, and translates as "Small Magic Hammer" or "Miracle Mallet" (in some video games its name has been localized in English as "Lucky Mallet").
The mallet is said to be very small, and swinging it grants its holder’s wishes. It plays an important role in the legend of Issun-bōshi (or "One-Inch Boy").
In the legend, the one-inch tall Issun-boshi, after leaving his parent's home, comes under the employ of a wealthy daimyo, whose daughter is an attractive princess. Although scorned for his height, he is given the job of accompanying the princess. While traveling together, they are attacked by an Oni, who deals with pesky Issun-boshi by swallowing him. He defeats the Oni by pricking him from within with his needle/sword. The Oni spits out Issun-boshi and drops the 'Uchide-no-Kozuchi as he runs away. As a reward for his bravery, the princess uses the power of the mallet to grow him to full size. At the end of the story, Issun-bōshi and princess are married.
Appearances in other media
- The hammer, called the "Midge Mallet", is used in the video game Secret of Mana to make playable characters smaller or to grow back to normal size.
- In the video game Ōkami, there is a character called Issun (who is loosely based on Issun-boshi) who follows the main character. Along with Issun, the Uchide's Mallet (referred to as the "Lucky Mallet" in the English localization) also appears in the game, although it is used to shrink the protagonist (a wolf avatar of the Shinto sun goddess Okami Amaterasu) instead, to Issun's size (rather than the other way around) granting one access to otherwise inaccessible areas. After obtaining it from the Sunken Ship, the mallet is shown to have a will of its own as it flies away, forcing Amaterasu and Issun to chase it. Upon catching up to it they discover that the mallet was not trying to run away, but instead was helping them in locating the source of a poisonous mist (which has been causing problems for Amaterasu and Issun), and its shrinking power helps them sneak into the Imperial Palace, eventually allowing them to enter the Emperor's body and defeat the boss Blight (source of the poison mist).
- In the video game The World Ends with You, is one of several secret items that can be found by the player after beating the game. It is an accessory that increases the amount of experience the wearer gets (unlike the legend it has no effect on the characters size in the game and is simply just another accessory which is reference to the Japanese legend). Its in-game description is "The miniature golden hammer of Muromachi-period legends that lets you change your height at will. Perfect for short folks!" (referencing the legend). Random NPCs also makes a reference to the legendary hammer. In the English localization, the name for this item is Lucky Mallet.
- Some Maneki Neko figures also appear with the Uchide no kozuchi in the right hand.
- The hammer is a reoccurring item in early Final Fantasy games and is used to cure the user of the status effect 'Small'.
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