Hakutaku have been long time misidentified with kudan by many. Rosemary once had this addressed in the blog on her site. I have also contributed some of the materials to the discussion.http://www.rosemarybandini.co.uk/kudan-versus-hakutaku/
I also have an article drafted for the journal some time ago for the once started by me column "Challenging the "obvious
" , but did not publish it for some technical/pseudo-copyright issues. Here meanwhile are a few relevant parts from it related to shishi/komainu. Maybe I will publish it in full on this site one day...
"Hakutaku and Komainu – two “little brothers” of the famouse celebrities. Or are they?
We all seem to know everything there is to know about the ShiShi, the Kirin and the Kudan. There are books and articles written about their appearance and origins. But what about the other two – Hakutaku and Komainu? What do we know about them and their relationship to their famous “relatives”?...
...The Shishi statues are always presented in pairs. According to feng shui, when facing the entrance the male lion with the globe should be placed on the right with the female on the left.
The male lion has his right paw on a ball, which represents the "Flower of life" The female is essentially identical, but has a single cub under her left paw, representing the cycle of life. Symbolically, the female fu lion protects those dwelling inside, while the male guards the structure. Sometimes the female has her mouth closed, and the male open, which symbolizes the enunciation of the sacred words "om" and “um” respectively. That is, they are in the form of A-hum, demonstrating the spirit of Confucianism. Au-hum means that one of a pair can understand what or how the other thinks or feels without hearing any words....
...Interestingly, the lion is not indigenous to China however Asiatic lions were quite common in neighboring India then. These Asiatic lions found in nearby India are the ones depicted in the Chinese culture. When Buddhist priests, or possibly traders, brought stories to China about stone Asiatic / Indian lions guarding the entry to Indian Buddhist temples, Chinese sculptors modeled statues after native dogs for use outside their temples as nobody in China had ever seen a real lion before. The mythic version of the animal, was known as the Lion of Fo, the word Fo 佛 being Chinese for Buddha. The Chinese word for lion is "Shi" which was adopted from their Sanskrit name "Sinh" in the neighboring India.
The mythic Lion is sometimes associated with feng shui, and are often called Fu Lions. Fu means 'happiness' in Chinese; however, the term "Fu Lion," and its variant Foo Lion, are not used in Chinese. Instead, they are known as Rui Shi or simply Shi .
So where and when does the Koma Inu come into play?
Checking with Joly:
“The mystic animals are also embodiments of the Yin and Yang doctrine of
Chinese philosophy; besides the Chinese Lion or Karashishi (q.v.), the monster
most often represented as a Temple guardian is the Korean dog : Kama Inu,
with two horns, and sometimes the Tama on its head, but lacking the curly
mane and tail of the Karashishi, which are replaced by straighter and less
Here is what we find in the “Kimpisho kochu by Emperor of Japan Juntoku”, 1952, Meiji Tosho Shuppan (Tokyo) by Kissen Muta:
“Shishi (lion in Sanscrit), Fo Dog - A lion with an open mouth and a tama in it. It has a horn.
Koma Inu (Korean dog) - Closed mouth and a single flat horn.
By the time they reached Japan in the Heian period (794-1185) they were both called Shishi.”
And from Wikipedia:
"In Japan the lion figures are known as Komainu (狛犬・高麗犬, Korean dogs) possibly due to their introduction to Japan through Korea.”
Joly has also indicated that there were shishi depicted with one or even two horns, partaking of the appearance of the Kirin. But Kirins have the body of a deer and hoofs instead of paws...
A prominent netsuke collector Guido Shiller, who long time lived in China, had suggested to me once, that he has realized, that the horn of the Japanese Shishi, which made them look like a different beast requiring a different name was nothing but a piece of the Shishi's mane in a form of a fearsome flame early on. During my travel across China and Thailand I have see a number of those myself...
Interestingly enough, Joly does not provide even one word of description for neither the Hakutaku, nor the Koma Inu in his work…
Here are some pictures from my travels to illustrate the point:
Kyoto, Emperor Palace, 2009
Kyoto, Yasaka shrine, 2009
LACMA, 15-16 century
Forbidden City, Beijing, China, 2011
Bottom line, I believe this one is just a horned shishi.
"Man sieht nur, was man weiß" - "One sees only what one knows". Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)