A small cage was opened at Lafcadio Hearn's funeral, setting birds into the air, the soul of the deceased presumably taking flight with them. His coffin was draped in chrysanthemums and fragrant olive, adorned by a laurel wreath. Seven Buddhist priests read the sutras at Kobudera (now Jishoin Enyuji Temple) in Shinjuku Ward's Ichigaya-Tomihisacho district in Tokyo, where Hearn had frequently enjoyed a stroll among the gravestones.

The non-Japanese community was vehemently put off by the choice of venue. As if the officiation of the Buddhist priests wasn't insulting enough, they were enraged by the Occidental's profane choice of a temple for the funeral.

Hearn himself had been a living outrage to the non-Japanese community, a role that he, as an anti-Christian and anti-imperialist, had thoroughly relished. Only three foreigners attended the ceremony.