A thousand deaths at Mount Mihara – Japan’s most infamous suicide volcano

A thousand deaths at Mount Mihara – Japan's most infamous suicide volcano 3

On February 12, 1933, a 19-year-old Japanese school girl named Kiyoko Matsumoto committed suicide by jumping into the active volcanic crater of Mount Mihara, on the island of Izu Ōshima.

A thousand deaths at Mount Mihara – Japan's most infamous suicide volcano 4

Kiyoko had developed an infatuation with one of her fellow students named Masako Tomita. Since lesbian relationships were considered taboo in Japanese culture at the time, Kiyoko and Masako decided to travel the volcano so that Kiyoko could end her life there in the lava pit’s hellish temperature of 1200 °C, what she really did.

After Kiyoko’s tragic death, this act started a bizarre trend among the Japanese, and in the following year, 944 people including 804 men and 140 women leap into the deadly volcanic crater of Mount Mihara to meet their horrible death. Within the next two years, there were reported 350 more suicides at this ominous volcanic point.

Out of an irresistible curiosity of human-nature, some visitors would often travel to Mount Mihara only to watch the pathetic scenes of death along with the people’s jump!

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