the online database of Japanese folklore



Translation: filth licker
Habitat: dirty baths, filthy toilets, abandoned homes
Diet: slime, mold, scum, hair, human waste, etc.

Appearance: Akaname are small, goblin-like yōkai which inhabit only the dirtiest homes and public baths. They are about the size of a child or a small adult, though they generally appears much smaller due to their hunching posture. Akaname have a mop of greasy, slimy hair on the tops of their heads. Their bodies are naked, and their skin is greasy like their hair. Akaname come in many colors and varieties, ranging from a dark, mottled green reminiscent of mold, to the ruddy pink of bedsores. They come in both one-eyed and two-eyed varieties, and can have anywhere from one to five fingers and toes. All akaname have an extremely long, sticky tongue. They use this to lap up the slime, grease, hair, and other filth found in bath houses and behind toilets.

Behavior: Like cockroaches, rats, lice, and other pests, akaname detest clean, well-kept homes. They only appear where the owners show a complete lack of sanitary discipline. Akaname are shy and stay clear of humans, scattering in the light like cockroaches. They spread disease, so it is a good idea to keep bathrooms and houses clean enough that akaname do not wish to settle down.

Alphabetical list of yōkai