Maneki Neko: The Lucky Beckoning Cat of Japan

Hello, this is Ayamegu(@ayakami_meguru).I will write about Maneki Neko (招き猫) this time.

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Maneki Neko (招き猫) are iconic Japanese figurines believed to bring good luck and prosperity. These charming cats, often depicted with a raised paw beckoning customers, are a popular sight in homes and businesses throughout Japan. In this article, we will explore the history, symbolism, and various types of Maneki Neko.

History of Maneki Neko

The origins of Maneki Neko can be traced back to the 17th century. There are several different legends surrounding the origin of these lucky cats, but one of the most popular tells the story of a poor man who took shelter from a storm under a tree. He noticed a cat beckoning him to a nearby temple. The man followed the cat and found that the temple was about to be struck by lightning. The cat’s gesture saved the man’s life, and in gratitude, he built a statue of the cat in the temple. The statue became known as Maneki Neko and was said to bring good luck to those who visited the temple.

Symbolism of Maneki Neko

Maneki Neko are typically depicted with one or both paws raised. The raised paw is believed to beckon good luck and prosperity. The left paw is said to attract customers, while the right paw is said to bring wealth and fortune. The color of the Maneki Neko also has symbolic meaning. White is associated with purity and good fortune, black is associated with protection from evil, and gold is associated with wealth and prosperity.

Types of Maneki Neko

There are many different types of Maneki Neko, each with its own unique meaning and symbolism. Some of the most common types include:

  • Calico Maneki Neko: These cats are said to bring good luck in all areas of life.
  • Maneki Neko with a Coin: This type of cat is said to bring wealth and prosperity.
  • Maneki Neko with a Bib: This type of cat is said to bring good luck in business.
  • Maneki Neko with a Smiling Face: This type of cat is said to bring happiness and joy.


Maneki Neko are a charming and popular symbol of good luck and prosperity in Japan. These lucky cats are a welcome addition to any home or business, and they make a great gift for anyone who could use a little extra good fortune.

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