Empty Interior (Carved before they began including interior carvings)
Sumo Concisus Genus
Sumo Wrestling is a highly specialized form of Japanese wrestling, one of the oldest of the Japanese martial arts. Competitors are called sumotori. The most notable feature of the sumotori is their weight, which ranges from 285 pounds to nearly 450 pounds. Sumotori enter wrestling school or sumobeya at the age of 15 and follow rigorous and strict training. There are numerous sumo tournaments, or basho, each year. Sumotori compete barefoot and wear a fringed loin cloth and thick silk belt. A match takes place in the dohyo, a ring that is 12 feet in diameter and covered with smooth earth. Sumo is accompanied by much ritual, including ceremonies to open and close events and between competitors in the ring. Rituals include the sumotori scattering salt in a purification ritual, pounding the floor with their fists, and staring at each other. The contestants then charge and try to move each other out of the dohyo or to knock one another down. Matches can last from a few seconds to a few minutes. Sumo is mentioned in the “Nihon-Shoki”, an 8th century chronicle that refers to a sumo contest in 23 BC. Originally, the object was to force an opponent to surrender, or sometimes to kill him. Sumotori were never members of the nobility, but they enjoyed higher status than was normally permitted to their class. During the Heian period (794-1185), sumo became a widespread spectator sport, and in the 12th century the samurai classes developed it for battle combat. Sumo gained popularity in Japan in the 20th century, and in the early 1980s it developed a following throughout Europe.