Heian beauty

about Heian beauty with super long hair
Heian Links
visual works

about Heian beauty with super long hair

The Heian period (about 9th century-12th century, capital was Kyoto) in Japan was very fascinating period for long hair lovers because standard of beauty at that period was length of hair, that is, people felt that the longer haired women is the more beautiful.

Novels, essays and pictures at Heian period show that almost all women of aristocrat have super long hair which is much longer than their height. The longest haired woman in Heian period is Yoshiko, one of noble women. It is said that length of her hair was about 7m.

Juuni-hitoe was a formal dress for noble women in Heian period and it is designed to protect their super long hair from friction with floor.

The Tale of Genji is very famous and popular love story written by female writer Murasakishikibu in about 1000A.D.. It contains 54 volumes. Leading character of it is HIKARU Genji who is a sun of emperor. It expresses manners and customs of Heian period, and expresses various kinds of love. It was the best seller novel at that time, and has been popular with Japanese women for this 1000 years.


[2004/07/16]Ouki san with Juni Hitoe interview by Wind
[2002/12/27]Pictures at Costume Museum in Kyoto by Wind
[2002/12/27]KOIKE Eva san with Heian clothes comments by Wind

Heian Links

Costume Museum
official site of Costume Museum. There are a lot of links related to Heian period and the Tale of Genji. Costume Museum shows dolls as well as miniature of court at Heian period in order to catch the world of the Tale of Genji.

Genji no Heya(Genji's room)
KOIKE Eva san's site of which theme is the Tale of Genji. Japanese only.

Hoshi Yadoru Umi Toki Wataru Fune
Haruusagi san's site. There are some illustrations of noble ladies in Heian period.

Visual Works

Shin Genjimonogatari

Japanese movie of the Tale of Genji, Genji is acted by ICHIKAWA Raizou.

Asaki Yumemishi (13 volumes)

Comic book of the Tale of Genji, written by YAMATO Kaduki, published in Kodansha. She express the world of it in beautiful drawing and we can see many many super long haired women in this comics.

I wonder if some foreigners think comics as cartoon or books for children. I would like to say that the quality of Japanese comics is very high. Comics is one of media which has the same position as novels, poets, pictures, movies and so on in Japan. The reason why Japanese adult as well as children read comics is that there are a lot of comics for adult with intelligence.

Asaki Yumemishi is close to original novel, and many Japanese teachers who teach Japanese classical literature recommend this to their students. (This paragraph is contributed by SAWA Suigetsu [1999/09/26])

ISBN of vol.1 is 4-06-319401-9. English web page of Kodansha is here.

Ogura Hyakunin Isshu

Ogura Hyakunin Isshu is a collection of famous 100 Japanese classical poets selected by FUJIWARA no Teika, including many poets in Heian period.

Ogura Hyakunin Isshu is played for card game in new year holiday in Japanese families. Pictures of super long haired noble women are drawn on cards. Nintendo publishes cards of Ogura Hyakunin Isshu. A page for it is here.

Manga Marugoto Hyakunin Isshu

(published in Shogakukan)

Educational book of Ogura Hyakunin Isshu for children with lots of illustration of super long haired noble women in Heian period.

ISBN: 4-05-200386-1

Weekly Visual Genji Monogatari

(published in DeAgostini japan)
Weekly visual magazine of The Tale of Genji. Some pictures comes from comics of Genji Monogatari by MAKI Miyako. This series composes visual encyclopedia of Genji Monogatari. E-mail address of inquiry is


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