san no tsuzumi

Aya no Tsuzumi

Aya no Tsuzumi (The Damask Drum) is a Japanese Noh play by an unknown author which depicts the evil consequences of unrequited desire.


The gardener (maeshite) at the Palace of Chikuzen has fallen in love with the Imperial Consort (tsure). She sends a message to the gardener that she will meet him at the pond if he beats the drum which she has placed in a tree in the garden. He tries but the drum has been made with damask (aya) and so cannot sound. Realising that he has been made a fool of, the gardener drowns himself in the pond and returns as an evil ghost (nochijite) who torments the princess.


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