Saturday, March 30, 2019

Anime Lap Pillow (hizamakura 膝枕) - Meaning, Examples

In Japanese, hizamakura 膝枕 means "lap pillow," which is when someone offers their lap as a pillow to someone else, so they lay their head on there.

Sakuranomiya Maika 桜ノ宮苺香 and Dino ディーノ, example of "lap pillow," hizamakura 膝枕.
Lap: Sakuranomiya Maika 桜ノ宮苺香
Head: Dino ディーノ
Anime: Blend S, ブレンド・S (Episode 3)

Not to be confused with dakimakura 抱き枕, which are those anime body pillows.


The word hizamakura 膝枕 means literally "knee pillow:" hiza is "knee," the body part, and makura means "pillow." In English it's translated to "lap pillow." The "lap" is the area above the knee.

So long as someone is resting their head on someone's lap, it doesn't matter how the person is sitting, or how they're resting their head, or what they're doing, it all counts as hizamakura.

On Floor

The hizamakura is typically done on the floor, so the person offering their lap would be sitting on their knees, i.e. in seiza 正座 position.

Emilia エミリア and Natsuki Subaru 菜月昴, example of "lap pillow," hizamakura 膝枕.
Lap: Emilia エミリア
Head: Natsuki Subaru 菜月昴
Anime: Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu Re:ゼロから始める異世界生活 (Episode 8)
Wiz ウィズ and Satou Kazuma 佐藤和真, example of "lap pillow," hizamakura 膝枕.
Lap: Wiz ウィズ
Head: Satou Kazuma 佐藤和真
Anime: Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! この素晴らしい世界に祝福を! (OVA)

Ear Cleaning

Sometimes, on top of offering their lap as pillow, someone will also offer to do some "ear-cleaning," mimi-kaki 耳かき, on the person resting their head using an ear-pick.

Shimura Tae 志村妙 and Yagyuu Binbokusai 柳生 敏木斎, example of "lap pillow," hizamakura 膝枕, and ear-cleaning, mimi-kaki 耳かき.
Lap: Shimura Tae 志村妙
Head: Yagyuu Binbokusai 柳生 敏木斎
Anime: Gintama 銀魂 (Episode 77)

On Seat

It also counts as a lap pillow when the pillow is seated on a chair or sofa.

Elda Maaka エルダ・マーカー offering a lap pillow for Henry Maaka ヘンリー・マーカー, example of hizamakura 膝枕, and "ear cleaning," mimi-kaki 耳かき.
Pillow: Elda Maaka エルダ・マーカー
Head: Henry Maaka ヘンリー・マーカー
Anime: Karin かりん (Episode 15, Stitch)
Jack Barbarossa Bancoran ジャック・バルバロッサ・バンコラン, resting on a "lap pillow," hizamakura 膝枕.
Head: Jack Barbarossa Bancoran ジャック・バルバロッサ・バンコラン
Anime: Patalliro!, パタリロ! (Episode 4)
  • Context: Bancoran answers the phone.
  • Bancoran da
    [This] is Bancoran.
  • boku da, Patariro da
    It's me. Patalliro.
  • nan'no you da? ima shigoto-chuu nanda ga
    What business [you have with me]? I'm working right now.
  • {otokonoko no hizamakura de icha-icha suru} no ga shigoto ka?!
    Is work {[making out] on a boy's lap pillow}?!
    • icha-icha
      Touching or caressing someone affectionately, cuddling, snuggling, etc.
      To make out. To flirt.
  • dou shite wakatta?!
    How did [you] know?!
Poses & Gestures

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