Ikuta Shrine is a Shinto shrine in the Chūō Ward of Kobe
, and is possibly among the oldest shrines in the country.According to Nihon Shoki,it was founded by the Empress Jingū at the beginning of the 3rd century AD to enshrine the kami Wakahirume, and was used as the base for a festival welcoming warriors back from the latest attempt to invade Korea. It was one of three shrines established at this time, the others being Hirota Shrine
and Nagata Shrine, dedicated to Kotoshiro-nushi (also known as Ebisu).
During the Genpei War, parts of the Battle of Ichi-no-Tani took place in and around this shrine, and are commemorated by markers in the Ikuta forest behind the shrine. Of course, the shrine's land was much larger back then, before the city of Kobe was built around it. Thus, the precise locations of skirmishes or events can no longer be commemorated on shrine land.Rōmon Today, two Noh plays, Ebira and Ikuta Atsumori, which retell aspects of the Genpei War, are performed near the Ikuta Shrine on a regular basis.They are performed every year at Ikuta's Autumn Festival.