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Kugutsu is an ancient form of puppet theatre said to have played a role in the origins or development of ningyô jôruri (aka Bunraku).

The form is said to have been introduced to Japan in the 8th century by a nomadic tribe from Central Asia who settled in Japan after introducing the form to China and Korea.


  • Andrew Tsubaki, "The Performing Arts of Sixteenth-Century Japan: A Prelude to Kabuki," Educational Theatre Journal 29:3 (1977), 304.