Hyakunin Isshu

classical Japanese anthology of one hundred Japanese waka by one hundred poets

Hyakunin Isshu (百人一首) is list of wakas written by 100 famous waka poets. They are cards that have writing on them. There are 200 cards divided into two groups – 100 Yomifuda cards and 100 Torifuda cards.

Yomifuda of Hyakunin isshu(Tenji tenno)

Hyakunin Isshu as a gameEdit

Hyakunin isshu is a popular game in Japan. It is played often during the New Year season. A few games are possible using these cards.

Karuta is the most popular game. A reader reads Kaminoku (the upper words) and Shimonoku (the lower words), and the players compete to see how fast they can pick the matching card. The Kaminoku is not written on the cards, so the players who memorize the Kaminoku have an advantage. The player who can get the most cards wins.

The beginning words are 5,7,5 (about 17 characters), called Kaminoku. The second part are 7,7, called Shimonoku.