Chinese Mythology

The Folk Gods and Spirits of the Middle Kingdom

YUTU

Chinese Immortality fabulous creature

Also known as Yü-T'u, Jade Rabbit, Moon Rabbit, Yùtù, Yuètù

The Moon Rabbit of Immortality

Yutu is a magic rabbit who lives on the moon. We are not sure how he got up there, but perhaps he swallowed the same gravity-defying pills as Chang’e. Together they keep each other company.

Yutu is an industrious critter — he spends most of his time pounding a pestle and mortar to make immortality elixir for Chang’e, who apparently can’t get enough of the stuff.

He is one of the few mythological figures for which there is indisputable evidence — just look up at the full moon and you can see him pounding on his mortar.

We think the elixir must be made from powdered silvery moon rock, with perhaps a touch of carrot juice when the moon is full. So far nobody has managed to get us a sample for rigorous testing, but we live in hope. In 2013 the Chinese space agency successfully landed a moon rover named Jade Rabbit as part of their Chang-e moon exploration program. Hopefully they are planning to broker a deal and start a company dealing with Immortality Elixir Export.

Yutu doesn’t really have a proper name. The Chinese characters Yue Tu mean simply ‘Moon Rabbit’. He does have a nickname though. Just call him Jade. Yue Tu sounds similar to Yu Tu, which means ‘Jade Rabbit’. It’s a kind of Chinese pun.

Yutu Facts and Figures

Name: Yutu
Pronunciation: Coming soon
Alternative names: Yü-T'u, Jade Rabbit, Moon Rabbit, Yùtù, Yuètù

Gender: Male
Type: fabulous creature
Celebration or Feast Day: Unknown at present

In charge of: Immortality
Area of expertise: Immortality

Good/Evil Rating: NEUTRAL, may not care
Popularity index: 881

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Article last revised on September 25, 2018 by Rowan Allen.
Editors: Peter J. Allen, Chas Saunders

References: Coming soon.

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