Ochi ni

An entry from Makimura Shiyō's Ōsaka kotoba jiten that caught my eye:

Ochi ni (Noun) A corruption of ichi ni ["one, two"]. After the Russo-Japanese war, "Ochi Ni Pharmaceuticals" employed disabled soldiers as drug salesmen, sending them out in groups of three to five to promote their wares by speaking of their war experiences and accompany themselves on the accordion as they sang: "Ochi ni, ochi ni, Ochi Ni's medicine is effective against gallstones, heartburn, munesukashi, stiff shoulders pre- and post-partum..."

I'm not sure what munesukashi was — something to do with chests and emptiness?

Note that there is no systematic correspondence between /o/ and /i/ involved here; I assume that the ochi ni pronunciation was something that the soldiers picked up in training (and possibly exaggerated for theatrical effect afterward).

Popularity factor: 6


Another version, with the more common <i>oicchi ni</i>, in a story collected in Tondabayashi:http://www.geocities.co.jp/PowderRoom-Tulip/9298/minwa4/momo3/o12.htm
This version seems to support the theory that <i>Munesukashi</i> was a remedy for chesty congestion, rather than another ailment.
Also referenced in Kurosawa's Mādadayo: http://nicogame.info/watch/sm12932175.


Nice, thanks! I found a couple of references to a medicinal drink called munesukashi online, but it just seems weird in a list of ailments. It also looks like it should be "tan, seki" (phlegm and coughing) rather than "tanseki" (gallstones) - Makimura has "たんせき", no comma/no kanji.


The link I posted mentions いもりの黒焼ほれ薬 directly after 胸すかし, so it's not all ailments. Does the Makimura have たんせき胸やけ胸すかし? The repetition and rhythm are quite compelling... even to a passer-by like me.


That is: "roast newt love potion" directly after munesukashi, so it's not all ailments.


Makimura quotes them thus: 「一二・一二、オチニの薬の効能は、たんせき・りゅういん・むねすかし、産前産後に肩の凝り……」

Note that the three parts separated by commas (after the intro) each have exactly 13 morae. Maybe a little too perfect? I wouldn't be at all surprised if there were multiple versions of the song, of course.


Most intriguing. Thank you.

Aime la vérité, mais pardonne à l'erreur

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