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The Hakutaku (白澤, lit. "White Benevolence" or 白沢, lit. "White Valley") is a mythical, spiritual beast, said to advise only kings of virtue. It is generally depicted as looking somewhat like a massive lion and can be distinguished by the presence of single or double horns. Often it will have extra eyes on its face or back. It is usually considered to be quite intelligent and well-read.
In Japanese folklore, it is said that a hakutaku visited Emperor Koutei (koutei is the Japanese word for emperor, so this is a fictional account). The creature could talk and explained that he only visited the greatest and most auspicious of rulers. The hakutaku went on to explain to the emperor that there were 11,520 youkai in the world; it also taught the emperor how to escape and exorcise the bad ones and deal with the good ones. The emperor set all that knowledge down in an encyclopedia of youkai.
- Example: Keine Kamishirasawa (were-hakutaku)