Miyagi Prefecture is a prefecture in the Tōhoku region of Japan. The capital is Sendai. Miyagi Prefecture was part of the province of Mutsu. Mutsu Province, on northern Honshu, was one of the last provinces to be formed as land was taken from the indigenous Emishi, became the largest as it expanded northward; the ancient capital was at Taga-jō in modern Miyagi Prefecture. In the third month of the second year of the Wadō era, there was an uprising against governmental authority in Mutsu Province and in nearby Echigo Province. Troops were promptly dispatched to subdue the revolt. In Wadō 5, the land of Mutsu Province was administratively separated from Dewa Province. Empress Genmei's Daijō-kan continued to organize other cadastral changes in the provincial map of the Nara period, as in the following year when Mimasaka Province was divided from Bizen Province. During the Sengoku period various clans ruled different parts of the province; the Uesugi clan had a castle town at Wakamatsu in the south, the Nanbu clan at Morioka in the north, Date Masamune, a close ally of the Tokugawa, established Sendai, now the largest town of the Tōhoku region.
In the Meiji period, four new provinces were created from parts of Mutsu: Rikuchū, Rikuzen and Iwashiro. The area, now Aomori Prefecture continued to be part of Mutsu until the abolition of the han system and the nationwide conversion to the prefectural structure of modern Japan. Date Masamune built a castle at Sendai as his seat to rule Mutsu. In 1871, Sendai Prefecture was formed, it was renamed Miyagi prefecture the following year. On March 11, 2011, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and a subsequent major tsunami hit Miyagi Prefecture, causing major damage to the area. The tsunami was estimated to be 10 meters high in Miyagi Prefecture. On April 7, 2011: 7.4-magnitude earthquake strikes off the coast of Miyagi, Japan's meteorological agency says. Workers were evacuated from the nearby troubled Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear facility once again, as a tsunami warning was issued for the coastline. Residents were told to flee for inner land at this time. Officials from the U. S. Geological Survey downgraded the magnitude to 7.1 from 7.4.
In 2013, Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako visited the prefecture to see the progress made since the tsunami. Miyagi Prefecture is in the central part of Tōhoku, facing the Pacific Ocean, contains Tōhoku's largest city, Sendai. There are high mountains on the west and along the northeast coast, but the central plain around Sendai is large. Matsushima is known as one of the three most scenic views of Japan, with a bay full of 260 small islands covered in pine groves. Oshika Peninsula projects from the northern coastline of the prefecture; as of 1 April 2012, 23% of the total land area of the prefecture was designated as Natural Parks, namely the Rikuchū Kaigan National Park. Fourteen cities are located in Miyagi Prefecture: Sendai - the largest and the capital city of the prefecture; these are the towns and villages in each district: Although Miyagi has a good deal of fishing and agriculture, producing a great deal of rice and livestock, it is dominated by the manufacturing industries around Sendai electronics and food processing.
As of March 2011, the prefecture produced 4.7% of Japan's rice, 23% of oysters, 15.9% of sauries. In July 2011, the Japanese government decided to ban all shipments of beef cattle from northeast Miyagi Prefecture over fears of radioactive contamination; this has since been rescinded. Miyagi University Miyagi University of Education Miyagi Gakuin Women's University Sendai University Sendai Shirayuri Women's College Tohoku University Tohoku Gakuin University Tohoku Bunka Gakuen University Tohoku Institute of Technology Tohoku Fukushi University Tohoku Seikatsu Bunka College Tohoku Pharmaceutical University Shokei Gakuin University Ishinomaki Senshu University JR East Tōhoku Shinkansen Tohoku Line Jōban Line Senseki Line Senzan Line Ishinomaki Line Rikuu East Line Kesennuma Line Ōfunato Line Sendai Municipal Subway Nanboku Line Tōzai Line Abukuma Express Sendai Airport Line Tōhoku Expressway Yamagata Expressway Sanriku Expressway Sendai East Road Sendai North Road Sendai South Road National Route 4 National Route 6 National Route 45 National Route 47 National Route 48 National Route 108 National Route 113 National Route 286 National Route 342 National Route 346 National Route 347 National Route 349 National Route 398 National Route 399 National Route 456 National Route 457 Sendai Port – Ferry route to Tomakomai and Nagoya, container hub port Ishinomaki Port – Ferry route to Mount Kinka, Tashiro Island and Tashiro Island.
Matsushima Bay Sendai Airport The sports teams listed below are based in Miyagi Prefecture. Baseball Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles Tohoku Reia Football Vegalta Sendai Sony Sendai F. C. Vegalta Sendai Ladies Basketball Sendai 89ERS Volleyball Sendai Bellefille Futsal Voscuore Sendai Professional wrestling Sendai Girls' Pro WrestlingAlso, the Sendai Hi-Land Raceway hosts motorspo
Ōshū is a city located in Iwate Prefecture, Japan. As of 30 April 2017, the city had an estimated population of 119,325, a population density of 120 persons per km² in 44,924 households; the total area of the city is 993.30 square kilometres. Ōshū is famous for its Maesawa Beef, numerous festivals, historic temples and shrines and Fujiwara no Sato, a theme park and movie lot based on the exploits of the Northern Fujiwaras in the 12th century. Many famous people have claimed Ōshū as their home including Ichiro Ozawa, the long-time leader of the Democratic Party of Japan. Ōshū is located in the south-central portion of Iwate Prefecture, bordered by the Akita Prefecture to the west. At 993.35 square kilometers, Ōshū is the second largest community in Iwate Prefecture in terms of land area. The city lies in a fertile plain straddling the Kitakami River and rises to the Ōu Mountains in the west and the Kitakami Mountains to the east; the city's highest point is Mt. Yakeishi-dake at 1,548 meters in the Ōu Mountains.
The northern boundary is marked by the Isawa River while the Koromogawa River marks the southern border. Ishibuchi Dam creates a reservoir on the upper reaches of the Isawa River near Mt. Yakeishi-dake. Iwate Prefecture Hanamaki Kitakami Ichinoseki Tōno Hiraizumi Sumita Nishiwaga Kanegasaki Akita Prefecture Higashinaruse Per Japanese census data, the population of Ōshū peaked at around the year 2000, has been in decline since. Ōshū has a humid climate with cold winters. The average annual temperature in Ōshū is 10.4 °C. The average annual rainfall is 1278 mm with September as the wettest month and January as the driest month; the temperatures are highest on average in August, at around 24.2 °C, lowest in January, at around -2.5 °C. The area of present-day Ōshū was part of ancient Mutsu Province, has been settled since at least the Japanese Paleolithic period. Isawa is rich in Kofun Period remains from the 5th century. By the Nara period, Japanese hunters, trappers and itinerant missionaries were visiting and settling in this area, coming into contact with the native Emishi people.
In 729 Kokuseki-ji temple was said to have been established by the Buddhist priest Gyōki in a mountainous area to the east of the Kitakami River in what is now Mizusawa. In 776 two separate attacks were launched by the Yamato dynasty against the Emishi with little success. In June 787 Emishi cavalry led by Aterui and More surprised and routed a larger force of Japanese infantry in the Battle of Subuse. Despite these successes the Emishi could not hold out against the Japanese and in 802 Aterui and More surrendered and were beheaded; that same year Sakanoue no Tamuramaro, established Isawa Castle in an attempt to keep the peace. Despite the victory the Japanese found. Six semi-autonomous districts were established along the Kitakami River; these came under the control of a powerful Emishi clan from Appi, the Abe clan. Early in the 11th century Abe no Yoritoki refused to pay taxes to the central government, led raiding parties south of the Koromo River, ruled as an independent monarch; this led to the Zenkunen War or Early Nine-Years War, in which Minamoto no Yoriyoshi reinforced by Kiyohara no Takenori from Dewa Province defeated the Abe clan.
The area came under the rule of the Kiyohara clan. Corrupt administration by the Kiyohara led to the Gosannen War or Latter Three Years' War in which Minamoto no Yoshiie subdued the Kiyohara. Fujiwara no Kiyohira, the founder of the Ōshū Fujiwara dynasty, was born in Fort Toyota, now in the Iwayado area of Esashi. Around 1100, he moved to Hiraizumi where his descendants ruled for nearly a hundred years. In 1348, a Zen Buddhist priest named Mutei Ryōshō founded the temple of Shōbō-ji near Kokuseki-ji temple in Mizusawa, it is the third head temple of the Sōtō sect of Zen Buddhism and boasts the largest thatched roof in Japan. In the 16th century, all of Ōshū became a part Sendai Domain under the Date clan, starting with Date Masamune. One of his retainers was a certain Juan Gotō who commanded Date Masamune's gun regiment at Osaka in 1614 and 1615, he was a Christian and established a church in the Fukuwara area of Mizusawa. After Christianity was outlawed in 1623 he went into hiding to escape capture.
Many foreign missionaries visited the area but in December 1623 a Jesuit Padre Diogo de Carvalho from Portugal was captured on the upper reaches of the Isawa River, sent to Sendai and forced to stand in the frozen Hirose River until he died in the early hours of what was New Year's Day, namely February 19, 1624. There is a memorial to Juan Gotō in the Fukuwara area and many crypto-Christian remains can still be seen there; the modern city of Ōshū was established on February 20, 2006, from the merger of the cities of Esashi and Mizusawa, the towns of Isawa and Maesawa, the village of Koromogawa. Ōshū has a mayor-council form of government with a directly elected mayor and a unicameral city legislature of 28 members. Graduate University for Advanced Studies – Iwate campus Iwate University – Ōshū campus Ōshū has 27 public elementary schools and 12 public middle schools operated by the city government and eight public high schools operated by the Iwate Prefectural Board of Education; the prefecture operates one special education school.
East Japan Railway Company – Tōhoku Shinkansen Mizusawa-Esashi East Japan Railway Company – Tōhoku Main Line Maesawa - Rikuchū-Orii - Mizusawa Tōhoku Expressway – Maesawa SA, Mizusawa IC Japan National Route 4 Japan National Route 107 Japan National Route 343 Japan National Ro
Akita Prefecture is a prefecture located in the Tōhoku region of Japan. The capital is the city of Akita; the area of Akita has been created from the ancient provinces of Mutsu. Separated from the principal Japanese centres of commerce and population by several hundred kilometres and the Ōu and Dewa mountain ranges to the east, Akita remained isolated from Japanese society until after the year 600. Akita was a region of principally nomadic tribes; the first historical record of what is now Akita Prefecture dates to 658, when the Abe no Hirafu conquered the native Ezo tribes at what are now the cities of Akita and Noshiro. Hirafu governor of Koshi Province, established a fort on the Mogami River, thus began the Japanese settlement of the region. In 733, a new military settlement—later renamed Akita Castle—was built in modern-day Akita city at Takashimizu, more permanent roads and structures were developed; the region was used as a base of operations for the Japanese empire as it drove the native Ezo people from northern Honshū.
It shifted hands several times. During the Tokugawa shogunate it was appropriated to the Satake clan, who ruled the region for 260 years, developing the agriculture and mining industries that are still predominant today. Throughout this period, it was classified as part of Dewa Province. In 1871, during the Meiji Restoration, Dewa Province was reshaped and the old daimyō domains were abolished and administratively reconstructed, resulting in the modern-day borders of Akita; the famous Heian period waka poet, Ono no Komachi, is said to have been born in Yuzawa City, Ogachi Town, located in the southeast of the prefecture. Located in the north of Honshu, Akita Prefecture faces the Sea of Japan in the west and is bordered by four other prefectures: Aomori in the north, Iwate in the east, Miyagi in the southeast, Yamagata in the south. Akita Prefecture is rectangular in shape 181 km from north to south and 111 km from west to east; the Ōu Mountains mark the eastern border of the prefecture, the higher Dewa Mountains run parallel through the center of the prefecture.
Like much of northern Japan, the prefecture has cold winters away from the sea. The Oga Peninsula is a prominent feature of the coastline. Thirteen cities are located in Akita Prefecture: These are the towns and villages in each district: Like much of the Tōhoku Region, Akita's economy remains dominated by traditional industries, such as agriculture and forestry; this has led many young people to migrate to other large cities. Akita Prefecture is, it has the lowest number of children as a percentage of the population, at 11.2%. As of 2010, it has a population of just over 1 million people; the high rate of depopulation in Akita Prefecture has led to the merging of smaller communities, which has affected the smallest of the merged communities. As depopulation in these communities and the migration to larger communities continues and health facilities have closed in some areas, leading to the continuation of the migration of families to larger cities for better access to health and educational opportunities.
The decline in younger generations has led to concerns for sustaining rural communities facing issues of aging and depopulation. Akita is famous for its sake breweries, it is well known for having the highest consumption of sake in Japan, thought to be the origin of the Akita breed of dog which carries the prefecture's name. The women of the region, referred to as Akita bijin, have gained widespread renown for their white skin, rounded faces and high voices, all of which are considered desirable. Ono no Komachi is a famous example of an Akita bijin. Akita is known for the following regional specialties: Kiritanpo Nabe Gakko Rice – Akita komachi Sake Recently there have been efforts to revitalize rural communities facing depopulation with different forms of green tourism as well as agritourism; these efforts aim at urbanites and in some cases foreign tourists, advertising the pristine forests of Akita prefecture as well as its many intangible cultures and sprawling rice fields. In Akita there has been a push for home stays, farmers markets for locally produced foods, the integration of outsiders into local cultural practices, for example the Namahage ritual on New Year's Eve, which draws a large number of tourists to Akita Prefecture every year.
Near Lake Tazawa, there are a number of hot springs resorts. These are popular with tourists from all over Japan. In addition, its numerous seasonal festivals offer a glimpse of traditional Japan; some famous examples are the Akita Kantō, the Omagari Fireworks, Namahage Festival, the Yokote Kamakura Festivals. Kakunodate is a charming old town, known as the little Kyoto, full of preserved samurai houses; the Aoyagi house is the former residence of Odano Naotake, the man who illustrated Japan's first modern guide to the human anatomy. The house is now a gallery of medical illustrations and traditional crafts. Starting in 2009, Akita began experiencing a huge surge in Korean tourism after the airing of the popular drama Iris, which featured several scenes shot in Akita, most notably at Lake Tazawa and Oga's GAO Aquarium. Kariwano Big Tug Festival, Daisen Amekko Festival, Odate Kamakura Snow Statue Event, Yokote Tsuchizaki Shinmei Festival, Akita Akita Kanto Festival, Akita Nishimonai Bon Dancing Festival, Ugo Kemanai Bon Dancing Fe
Kitakami is a city located in Iwate Prefecture, Japan. As of 1 March 2017, the city had an estimated population of 92,945, a population density of 212 persons per km2 in 37,085 households; the total area of the city is 437.55 square kilometres. The city is famous for the sakura. Kitakami is located in south-central Iwate Prefecture, in the Kitakami River valley 45 kilometers south of the prefectural capital of Morioka, 490 kilometers north of Tokyo; the city is at the confluence of the Kitakami River and the Waga River and has an altitude ranging from 50 to 200 meters above sea level, rising to 400 meters in the east. Iwate Prefecture Hanamaki Ōshū Nishiwaga Kanegasaki Kitakami has a humid climate characterized by mild summers and cold winters; the average annual temperature in Kitakami is 10.5 °C. The average annual rainfall is 1319 mm with September as the wettest month and February as the driest month; the temperatures are highest on average in August, at around 24.3 °C, lowest in January, at around -2.4 °C.
Per Japanese census data, the population of Kitakami has increased over the past 40 years. The area of present-day Kitakami was part of ancient Mutsu Province, has been settled since at least the Jōmon period by the Emishi people; the area was a stronghold for the Emishi chieftain Aterui until his death at the hands of Sakanoue Tamuramaro. During the portion of the Heian period, the area was ruled by the Abe clan, became a battleground during the Former Nine Years War The Abe were followed by the Northern Fujiwara clan. During the Sengoku period, the area came under the control of the Nanbu clan; the area was part of Morioka Domain during the Edo period, under the Tokugawa shogunate, with the exception of two villages on its southeastern border, which were under Sendai Domain. The town of Kurosawajiri was established by the Meiji period creation of the municipalities system on April 1, 1891; the modern city of Kitakami was founded on April 1, 1954, by the merger of the town of Kurosawajiri, with the villages of Iitoyo, Saraki, Oniyanai and Fukuoka.
On April 1, 1991 Kitakami absorbed town of Waga. Kitakami has a mayor-council form of government with a directly elected mayor and a unicameral city legislature of 26 members; the economy of Kitakami was traditionally agricultural. Kitakami has 17 public elementary schools and nine public junior high schools operated by the city government and five public high schools operated by the Iwate Prefectural Board of Education. East Japan Railway Company – Tōhoku Shinkansen Kitakami East Japan Railway Company – Tōhoku Main Line Kitakami - Murasakino East Japan Railway Company – Kitakami Line Kitakami - Yanagihara - Ezuriko - Fujine - Tatekawame -Yokokawame - Iwasawa - Wakasennin Tōhoku Expressway – Kitakami-Kanegasaki IC, Kitakami-Ezuriko IC Akita Expressway – Kitakami IC, Kitakami-Nishi IC Japan National Route 4 Japan National Route 107 Japan National Route 456 The city is famous for the sakura that bloom in Tenshochi Park, regarded as one of the hundred best places in Japan to view cherry blossoms.
Another hallmark of the city is Oni Kenbai, a traditional sword dance where the dancers dress as demons, performed during the summer festivals, such as Kitakami Michinoku Traditional Dance Festival. Kitakami boasts a site, reputed to be the grave of the famous Heian period waka poet Izumi Shikibu. USA – Concord, United States, sister cities since October 25, 1974 China – Sanmenxia, Henan Province, friendship cities since May 25, 1985 Tamaki Saitō, psychologist Hiroki Suzuki, actor Saori Takahashi, professional women’s volleyball player Tatsuo Hirano, politician Yoshiaki Fujiwara, professional wrestler Akira Yaegashi, professional boxer Yoshida Tatsuya, musician Media related to Kitakami, Iwate at Wikimedia Commons Official Website
The Jōmon period is the time in Japanese prehistory, traditionally dated between c. 14,000–300 BCE refined to about 1000 BCE, during which Japan was inhabited by a hunter-gatherer culture, which reached a considerable degree of sedentism and cultural complexity. The name "cord-marked" was first applied by the American scholar Edward S. Morse, who discovered sherds of pottery in 1877 and subsequently translated it into Japanese as jōmon; the pottery style characteristic of the first phases of Jōmon culture was decorated by impressing cords into the surface of wet clay and is accepted to be among the oldest in East Asia and the world. The Jōmon period was rich in tools and jewellery made from bone, stone and antler, it is compared to pre-Columbian cultures of the North American Pacific Northwest and to the Valdivia culture in Ecuador because in these settings cultural complexity developed within a hunting-gathering context with limited use of horticulture. The long 14,000 years, Jōmon period is conventionally divided into a number of phases: Incipient, Early, Middle and Final, with the phases getting progressively shorter.
The fact that this entire period is given the same name by archaeologists should not be taken to mean that there was not considerable regional and temporal diversity. Dating of the Jōmon sub-phases is based upon ceramic typology, to a lesser extent radiocarbon dating. Traces of Paleolithic culture stone tools, occur in Japan from around 30,000 BCE onwards; the earliest "Incipient Jōmon" phase began while Japan was still linked to continental Asia as a narrow peninsula. As the glaciers melted following the end of the last glacial period, sea levels rose, separating the Japanese archipelago from the Asian mainland. In addition, a continuous chain of islands encompasses Luzon, Taiwan and Kyushu, allowing for continuous contact between the Jōmon and maritime Southeast Asia. Within the archipelago, the vegetation was transformed by the end of the Ice Age. In southwestern Honshu and Kyushu, broadleaf evergreen trees dominated the forests, whereas broadleaf deciduous trees and conifers were common in northeastern Honshu and southern Hokkaido.
Many native tree species, such as beeches, buckeyes and oaks produced edible nuts and acorns. These provided abundant sources of food for animals. In the northeast, the plentiful marine life carried south by the Oyashio Current salmon, was another major food source. Settlements along both the Sea of Japan and the Pacific Ocean subsisted on immense amounts of shellfish, leaving distinctive middens that are now prized sources of information for archaeologists. Other food sources meriting special mention include Sika deer, wild boar, wild plants such as yam-like tubers, freshwater fish. Supported by the productive deciduous forests and an abundance of seafood, the population was concentrated in central and northern Honshu, but Jōmon sites range from Hokkaido to the Ryukyu Islands; the earliest pottery in Japan was made before the start of the Incipient Jōmon period. Small fragments, dated to 14,500 BCE, were found at the Odai Yamamoto I site in 1998. Pottery of the same age was subsequently found at other sites such as Kamikuroiwa and Fukui Cave.
Archaeologist Junko Habu claims "he majority of Japanese scholars believed, still believe, that pottery production was first invented in mainland Asia and subsequently introduced into the Japanese archipelago." This seems to be confirmed by recent archaeology. As of now, the earliest pottery vessels in the world date back to 20,000 BP and were discovered in Xianren Cave in Jiangxi, China; the pottery may have been used as cookware. Other early pottery vessels include those excavated from the Yuchanyan Cave in southern China, dated from 16,000 BCE, at present it appears that pottery emerged at the same time in Japan, in the Amur River basin of the Russian Far East; the first Jōmon pottery is characterized by the cord-marking that gives the period its name and has now been found in large numbers of sites. The pottery of the period has been classified by archaeologists into some 70 styles, with many more local varieties of the styles; the antiquity of Jōmon pottery was first identified after World War II, through radiocarbon dating methods.
The earliest vessels were smallish round-bottomed bowls 10–50 cm high that are assumed to have been used for boiling food and storing it beforehand. They belonged to hunter-gatherers and the size of the vessels may have been limited by a need for portability; as bowls increase in size, this is taken to be a sign of an settled pattern of living. These types continued to develop, with elaborate patterns of decoration, undulating rims, flat bottoms so that they could stand on a surface; the manufacture of pottery implies some form of sedentary life because pottery is heavy and fragile and thus unusable for hunter-gatherers. However, this doe
Japan is an island country in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies off the eastern coast of the Asian continent and stretches from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and the Philippine Sea in the south; the kanji that make up Japan's name mean "sun origin", it is called the "Land of the Rising Sun". Japan is a stratovolcanic archipelago consisting of about 6,852 islands; the four largest are Honshu, Hokkaido and Shikoku, which make up about ninety-seven percent of Japan's land area and are referred to as home islands. The country is divided into 47 prefectures in eight regions, with Hokkaido being the northernmost prefecture and Okinawa being the southernmost one; the population of 127 million is the world's tenth largest. 90.7 % of people live in cities. About 13.8 million people live in the capital of Japan. The Greater Tokyo Area is the most populous metropolitan area in the world with over 38 million people. Archaeological research indicates; the first written mention of Japan is in Chinese history texts from the 1st century AD.
Influence from other regions China, followed by periods of isolation from Western Europe, has characterized Japan's history. From the 12th century until 1868, Japan was ruled by successive feudal military shōguns who ruled in the name of the Emperor. Japan entered into a long period of isolation in the early 17th century, ended in 1853 when a United States fleet pressured Japan to open to the West. After nearly two decades of internal conflict and insurrection, the Imperial Court regained its political power in 1868 through the help of several clans from Chōshū and Satsuma – and the Empire of Japan was established. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, victories in the First Sino-Japanese War, the Russo-Japanese War and World War I allowed Japan to expand its empire during a period of increasing militarism; the Second Sino-Japanese War of 1937 expanded into part of World War II in 1941, which came to an end in 1945 following the Japanese surrender. Since adopting its revised constitution on May 3, 1947, during the occupation led by SCAP, the sovereign state of Japan has maintained a unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy with an Emperor and an elected legislature called the National Diet.
Japan is a member of the ASEAN Plus mechanism, UN, the OECD, the G7, the G8, the G20, is considered a great power. Its economy is the world's third-largest by nominal GDP and the fourth-largest by purchasing power parity, it is the world's fourth-largest exporter and fourth-largest importer. Japan benefits from a skilled and educated workforce. Although it has renounced its right to declare war, Japan maintains a modern military with the world's eighth-largest military budget, used for self-defense and peacekeeping roles. Japan is a developed country with a high standard of living and Human Development Index, its population enjoys the highest life expectancy and third lowest infant mortality rate in the world, but is experiencing issues due to an aging population and low birthrate. Japan is renowned for its historical and extensive cinema, influential music industry, video gaming, rich cuisine and its major contributions to science and modern technology; the Japanese word for Japan is 日本, pronounced Nihon or Nippon and means "the origin of the sun".
The character nichi means "sun" or "day". The compound therefore means "origin of the sun" and is the source of the popular Western epithet "Land of the Rising Sun"; the earliest record of the name Nihon appears in the Chinese historical records of the Tang dynasty, the Old Book of Tang. At the end of the seventh century, a delegation from Japan requested that Nihon be used as the name of their country; this name may have its origin in a letter sent in 607 and recorded in the official history of the Sui dynasty. Prince Shōtoku, the Regent of Japan, sent a mission to China with a letter in which he called himself "the Emperor of the Land where the Sun rises"; the message said: "Here, I, the emperor of the country where the sun rises, send a letter to the emperor of the country where the sun sets. How are you". Prior to the adoption of Nihon, other terms such as Yamato and Wakoku were used; the term Wa is a homophone of Wo 倭, used by the Chinese as a designation for the Japanese as early as the third century Three Kingdoms period.
Another form of Wa, Wei in Chinese) was used for an early state in Japan called Nakoku during the Han dynasty. However, the Japanese disliked some connotation of Wa 倭, it was therefore replaced with the substitute character Wa, meaning "togetherness, harmony"; the English word Japan derives from the historical Chinese pronunciation of 日本. The Old Mandarin or early Wu Chinese pronunciation of Japan was recorded by Marco Polo as Cipangu. In modern Shanghainese, a Wu dialect, the pronunciation of characters 日本; the old Malay word for Japan, Japun or Japang, was borrowed from a southern coastal Chinese dialect Fukienese or Ningpo – and this Malay word was encountered by Portuguese traders in Southeast Asia in the 16th century. These Early Portuguese traders brought the word
Mōtsū-ji is a Buddhist temple of the Tendai sect in the town of Hiraizumi in southern Iwate Prefecture], refers to the historic area surrounding it containing the ruins of two older temples, Enryū-ji and Kashō-ji in a Jōdo garden. The current temple was built in the 18th century and bears no relation to the ancient temple structures that once stood here. In June 2011, Mōtsū-ji was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as "Historic Monuments and Sites of Hiraizumi". Mōtsū-ji was founded in 850 by Ennin. At the time, the area was a frontier between Yamato Japan and the Emishi of the Tōhoku region of northern Honshū. In the mid-12th century, Fujiwara no Motohira, the second Northern Fujiwara lord, built a temple here called Enryū-ji. There is a possibility that Motohira's father Fujiwara no Kiyohira built an earlier Enryū-ji on this site before he died in 1128. If so, it is supposed that this original temple was consumed by fire soon after its completion in the war of succession between Motohira and his brother Koretsune.
The temple built by Motohira around 1150 would have been a copy of his father's temple. Motohira's Enryū-ji must have been spectacular by any standards; the main hall contained a monumental statue of Yakushi Nyorai, the Buddha of Healing, with monumental statues of the Twelve Divine Generals, sculpted by Unkei with crystal eyes. The hall itself was brightly painted and decorated with precious wood, gold and jewels; the main temple was surrounded by other buildings including a lecture hall, a circumambulation hall, a two-story main gate, a bell tower and a sutra repository. The temple's name placard was written by Fujiwara no Tadamichi and the ornamental poem slips by Fujiwara no Norinaga. At the height of its glory Mōtsū-ji is said to have had 40 buildings and up to 500 subsidiary chapels for meditation, many of which used rare woods and precious materials in their construction, in the manner of nearby Chūson-ji. Once Enryū-ji was completed Motohira ordered an exact copy to be built beside it, Kashō-ji.
He did not live to see it completed. His son and heir, accomplished that task. Kashō-ji contained a monumental statue of Yakushi but the walls were decorated with paintings illustrating the Lotus Sutra. After the downfall of the Northern Fujiwara clan, all of the buildings were destroyed by fires, either natural or in conflicts, the temple was in ruins by 1226; the temple was rebuilt during the Edo period. The current temple buildings consist of a Hondō enshrining a Yakushi Nyorai, a Jogyō-dō meditation hall; the Oizumi-ga-ike pond and surrounding Pure Land garden is preserved. The designer of the garden is unknown, but was familiar with the Sakuteiki; the garden consists of a large pond with two islands, one peninsula on the southeast shore, three on the south shore. On the north shore of the pond are the remains of the original main hall, bell tower and sutra repository. In the original garden, bridges connected this hall with the central island and the great south gate; the shoreline, with its beach and rugged mountain rocks, is thought to represent the seacoast.
There are beautiful plantings of cherry trees, lotus, bush clover and maples. Various festivals are held throughout the year. Mōtsū-ji is designated as both a Special Place of Scenic Beauty. January 20 = The Jogyodo 20th Night Festival and "Ennen no Mai" Dance May 1–5 = Spring Fujiwara Festival and Ennen no Mai Dance June 20 - July 10 = Ayame Matsuri or Iris Festival August 16 = Daimonji Matsuri or Bon Fire Festival September 15–30 = Hagi Matsuri or Japanese Bush Clover Festival November 1–3 = Autumn Fujiwara Festival and Ennen no Mai Dance List of Historic Sites of Japan Shiramizu Amidadō Motsuji Temple japan national Tourism Organization Hiraizumi Tourism Association