Amaterasu (天照) is the Sun Goddess and the Highest Goddess who stands at the top of Heaven.
Amaterasu appears to be a young girl of petite appearance. She has light-colored skin, hair, and eyes with (usually) non-visible pupils. She is normally seen wearing what appears to be a white kariginu with an elaborately tied sash, nagabakama (formal long hakama), and a Divine Cloak wrapped around her arms. During her first appearance, however, she wears a patterned kimono.
As the Highest Goddess, she seems to put the best interests of Heaven above anything else, although she still listens to her fellow Gods and Goddesses. She remains nonchalant even after apparently losing one of her Shinki.
Amaterasu appears behind a post where she peeks at the group composed of Hiyori, Yukine, Kofuku, and Daikoku gathered where Ebisu was executed by the Heaven's Execution Force. Hiyori notices her first and she and Yukine confront her, claiming she is one of the Execution Force and proceeds to ask her if they can help her with anything. Amaterasu answers she isn't someone worth helping and that no one knows she went to them, causing that Yukine asks what she wants and states that he is sure she is aware of what has just occurred. Amaterasu says she is and that whatever Yukine wants her to tell, but she cannot say as "Heaven is righteous and absolute. And it must never bow down or apologize to anyone, no matter what." Amaterasu tells her reason for being there (her sentence was cut off).
Later, Amaterasu is seen whispering to Kofuku's ear, who is shown gleaming to whatever the higher goddess informed her. Amaterasu disappears right after and Kofuku bows down to her. Kofuku later reveals that Amaterasu told her of the way to bring Yato and Bishamon back to the human world from the underworld, the Soul Call - a technique that can recall someone from the Underworld by a living human by calling them by their real name. Amaterasu states that if they call Yato by his real name, "I'm sure it will make him happy." It is yet unknown why she shared that information on Soul Call to them.
The next time she appears, Amaterasu orders Yato's execution for high treason right after she seals Yukine in a box for all eternity. Yato's friends and fellow gods contest the execution, and though it seems hopeless at first, Yato is found innocent and all are released. Unfortunately, sealing Yukine in a box awakened a hidden trauma related to how he died that would have a disastrous domino effect on his relationship with Yato.
In Japanese Lore
Amaterasu is the supreme Japanese deity, having been created by the divine couple Izanagi and Izanami. She and her siblings were born from Izanagi when he was purifying himself upon entering Yomi, the underworld now ruled by his former wife Izanami, after breaking the promise not to see dead goddess and being chased by her and her army "Yakusan-no-ikaduchigami". Amaterasu was born when Izanagi washed out his left eye, Tsukuyomi was born from the washing of the right eye, and Susanoo from the washing of the nose.
Izanagi set Amaterasu up as the ruler of the High Plains of Heaven, Tsukuyomi as the ruler of the night and Susanoo as the ruler of the seas. It was written that Amaterasu had painted the landscape with her siblings while she created ancient Japan. Originally, Amaterasu shared the sky with Tsukuyomi, her husband, and brother until he killed the goddess of food out of disgust. This killing upset the highest goddess, causing her to label Tsukuyomi an evil god and split away from him; separating night from day.
Her brother Susanoo insulted Amaterasu, claiming she had no power over the higher realm. When Izanagi ordered him to leave Heaven, he went to bid his sister goodbye, who grew suspicious but accepted Susanno's challenge to prove his sincerity. Each of them took an object belonging to the other and from it, birthed deities. Amaterasu birthed three women from Susanoo's sword while he birthed five men from her necklace. Claiming the gods were hers because they were born of her necklace and the goddesses were his, she won the challenge. His defeat angered him enough to go on a rampage, destroying much of the heavenly and earthly realms and killing one of her attendants. In fury and grief, Amaterasu hid inside the Ama-no-Iwato ("heavenly rock cave"), plunging the earth into darkness and chaos until she was persuaded to leave the cave by eight hundred Kami threw a party outside of the cave. Though Susanoo was punished by being banished from heaven. Both siblings later amended their conflict when Susanoo gave her the Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi sword as a reconciliation gift. This causes the sun to become visible again during this event.
- The name "Amaterasu" is derived from the sentence "Ame/Ama o terasu" (天を照らす), which means "[She who] illuminates the heavens". The meaning of her whole name, "Amaterasu Ōmikami" (天照大御神), is "the great august kami (deity) who illuminates heaven".