About Woshite World

This Woshite World site is about research on “Woshite”, an ancient Japanese writing system. Over a long, long period, Woshite had been forgotten. Yoshinosuke Matsumoto rediscovered it in 1966. Then Mitsuru Ikeda took over the study of Woshite from Matsumoto. He showed by rigorous comparative study that “Woshite literature” is older than “Nihon-shoki” and “Kojiki”, which are conventionally recognized as old literature. Thus it has been proven that, of these three, Woshite is the existing oldest literature of Japan.

Ikeda founded the Japan Woshite Institute together with other young researchers. Even now in the group, deep active research continues. Archaeological investigation of Jomon ruins has been found to have links with the Woshite world.

It has been confirmed that Woshite characters are visually a clarification, an etymology and a Japanese grammar.  A lot of old words have continued from the Woshite era to modern Japanese.

Japan’s ancient history, philosophy, physics, world view, teachings, and many other aspects have been found in Woshite study. They teach us much about the spirit of the old Japanese and lead us to understand the natural way in which it formed and developed.

This “Woshite World” site reports on the latest research of the Japan Woshite Institute, and it will be provided to English readers in a timely manner.

Special Acknowledgement 

Shoko Sakata is a researcher at the Japan Woshite Institute. Woshite World is deeply indebted to Ms. Sakata for her cooperation and participation as advisor as well as instructor of Wosite research. Except for several charts from the Yomigaeru book of Aoki and Hiraoka, all other charts were made by Ms. Sakata. Almost all of the Woshite research reported herein is due to Ms. Sakata. This blogsite would not be possible without her daily interaction and interest.

We appreciate your interest and we are certain that you will learn many fascinating matters here about the language and culture of ancient Japan.

To begin, please use the link below to return to Welcome to Woshite World,


and follow the directions there.

Photo:  Bamboo forest in Arashiyama, by Okunomichi.