The Lady and the Box: A UFO Story from 1803 Japan

One of Japan’s most famous UFO stories focuses on a mysterious craft that washed ashore in 1803 on a beach in the Hitachi province. The craft was described as a circular, saucer-shaped boat; drawings of the object from that time period look very similar to modern-day UFO descriptions. 

Utsuro Bune 1

It’s either a UFO or a bedazzled mushroom – your call. 

The ship’s interior featured mysterious symbols and its sole inhabitant was described as an incredibly beautiful young woman.

Utsuro Bune 2

Beauty standards were subjective in those days, as Little Miss Perry Mason up there clearly demonstrates. 

The girl spoke in an unknown language and cradled a wooden box that she guarded tenaciously. The fishermen assumed that the box held the severed head of her lover, but modern UFO scholars discount this theory because the box depicted  is not the right shape. The fishermen eventually pushed the girl and the mysterious ship back into the ocean. 

And my takeaway from this unusual story was not “Wow, could those be the earliest illustrations of UFOs ever made?”  but rather “So they had boxes in feudal Japan specifically designed for severed head storage?”

Utsure Bune cropped

Glad Zip Lock Head Boxes: No more freezer burn on those sideburns.   
 



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