Shoin-zukuri is a style of Japanese residential architecture used in the mansions of the military, temple guest halls, Zen abbot's quarters of the Azuchi–Momoyama and Edo periods. It forms the basis of today's traditional-style Japanese house. Characteristics of the shoin-zukuri development were the incorporation of square posts and floors covered with tatami; the style takes its name from the shoin, a term that meant a study and a place for lectures on the sūtra within a temple, but which came to mean just a drawing room or study. The foundations for the design of today's traditional Japanese residential houses with tatami floors were established in the late Muromachi period and refined during the ensuing Momoyama period. Shoin-zukuri, a new architectural style influenced by Zen Buddhism, developed during that time from the shinden-zukuri of the earlier Heian period's palaces and the subsequent residential style favored by the warrior class during the Kamakura period; the term shoin, meaning study or drawing room has been used to denote reception rooms in residences of the military elite as well as study rooms at monasteries.
A shoin has a core area surrounded by aisles, smaller areas separated by fusuma sliding doors, or shōji partitions constructed of paper on a wooden frame or wooden equivalents and sugido. The main reception room is characterized by specific features: a recessed alcove; the reception room is covered with wall-to-wall tatami, has square beveled pillars, a coved or coffered ceiling, wooden shutters protecting the area from rain. The entrance hall emerged as an element of residential architecture during the Momoyama period; the oldest extant shoin style building is the Tōgu-dō at Ginkaku-ji dating from 1485. Other representative examples of early shoin style called shuden, include two guest halls at Mii-dera. In the early Edo period, shoin-zukuri reached its peak and spread beyond the residences of the military elite; the more formal shoin-style of this period is apparent in the characteristics of Ninomaru Palace at Nijō Castle as well as the shoin at Nishi Hongan-ji. Conrad Totman argues that the development of the shoin-zukuri style was linked to a lumber scarcity, caused by excessive deforestation, which prompted the use of lower-quality, more abundant material.
As larger, straight-grained trees became less accessible, "elegant wooden flooring gave way to crude wooden under-flooring, concealed beneath tatami." Sliding wooden doors were replaced with fusuma, a lightweight combination of "stiff fabric or cardboard-like material pasted onto a frame made of slender wooden sticks," and shōji sliding panels served as a substitute for more elaborate paneled wooden doors. The simpler style used in the architecture of tea houses for the tea ceremony developed in parallel with shoin-zukuri. In the 16th century Sen no Rikyū established dedicated "grass hut" style teahouses characterized by their small size of two to eight mat, the use of natural materials, rustic appearance; this teahouse style, exemplified by the Joan and Taian teahouses, was influenced by Japanese farmhouse style and the shoin style featuring tatami matted floors, recessed alcoves and one or more ante chambers for preparations. By the beginning of the Edo period, the features of the shoin and the teahouse styles began to blend.
The result was an informal version of the shoin style called sukiya-zukuri. The sukiya-zukuri style has a characteristic decorative alcove and shelf, utilizes woods such as cedar, hemlock and cypress with rough surfaces including the bark. Compared to the shoin style's, roof eaves in the sukiya style bend downward. While the shoin style was suitable for ceremonial architecture, it became too imposing for residential buildings; the less formal sukiya style was used for the mansions of the aristocracy and samurai after the beginning of the Edo period. List of National Treasures of Japan Nishi, Kazuo. What is Japanese architecture?. Kodansha International. ISBN 4-7700-1992-0. Retrieved 2009-11-11. Young, David; the art of Japanese architecture. Architecture and Interior Design. Tuttle Publishing. ISBN 0-8048-3838-0. Retrieved 2009-11-11
Shinto architecture is the architecture of Japanese Shinto shrines. With a few exceptions, the general blueprint of a Shinto shrine is Buddhist in origin. Before Buddhism, shrines were just temporary. Buddhism brought to Japan the idea of permanent shrines and much of Shinto architecture's vocabulary; the presence of verandas, stone lanterns, elaborate gates are examples of this influence. The composition of a Shinto shrine is variable, none of its possible features are present; the honden or sanctuary, the part which houses the kami and, the centerpiece of a shrine, can be missing. However, since its grounds are sacred, they are surrounded by a fence made of stone or wood called tamagaki, while access is made possible by an approach called sandō; the entrances themselves are straddled by gates called torii, which are therefore the simplest way to identify a Shinto shrine. A shrine may include within its grounds each destined to a different purpose. Among them are the honden or sanctuary, where the kami are enshrined, the heiden, or hall of offerings, where offers and prayers are presented, the haiden or hall of worship, where there may be seats for worshipers.
The honden is the building that contains the shintai "the sacred body of the kami". Of these, only the haiden is open to the laity; the honden is located behind the haiden and is much smaller and unadorned. Other notable shrine features are the temizuya, the fountain where visitors cleanse their hands and mouth and the shamusho, the office that supervises the shrine. Shrines can be large, as for example Ise Shrine, or as small as a beehive, as in the case of the hokora, small shrines found on road sides. Before the forced separation of Shinto and Buddhism, it was not uncommon for a Buddhist temple to be built inside or next to a shrine or to the contrary for a shrine to include Buddhist subtemples. If a shrine was a Buddhist temple, it was called a jingu-ji. At the same time, temples in the entire country adopted tutelary kami (chinju and built temple shrines called chinjusha to house them. After the forcible separation of Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines ordered by the new government in the Meiji period, the connection between the two religions was severed, but continued nonetheless in practice.
The practice of marking sacred areas began in Japan as early as the Yayoi period originating from primal Shinto tenets. Features in the landscape such as rocks, waterfalls and mountains, were places believed to be capable of attracting kami, subsequently were worshiped as yorishiro. Sacred places may have been marked with a surrounding fence and an entrance gate or torii. Temporary buildings similar to present day portable shrines were constructed to welcome the gods to the sacred place. Over time the temporary structures evolved into permanent structures that were dedicated to the gods. Ancient shrines were constructed according to the style of storehouses; the buildings had gabled roofs, raised floors, plank walls, were thatched with reed or covered with hinoki cypress bark. Such early shrines did not include a space for worship. Three important forms of ancient shrine architectural styles exist: taisha-zukuri, shinmei-zukuri and sumiyoshi-zukuri They are exemplified by Izumo Taisha, Nishina Shinmei Shrine and Sumiyoshi Taisha and date to before 552.
According to the tradition of Shikinen sengū-sai, the buildings or shrines were faithfully rebuilt at regular intervals adhering to the original design. In this manner, ancient styles have been replicated through the centuries to the present day; the following is a diagram illustrating the most important elements of a Shinto shrine. Torii – Shinto gate Stone stairs Sandō – the approach to the shrine Chōzuya or temizuya – fountain to cleanse one's hands and face Tōrō – decorative stone lanterns Kagura-den – building dedicated to Noh or the sacred kagura dance Shamusho – the shrine's administrative office Ema – wooden plaques bearing prayers or wishes Sessha/massha – small auxiliary shrines Komainu – the so-called "lion dogs", guardians of the shrine Haiden – oratory Tamagaki – fence surrounding the honden Honden – main hall, enshrining the kami. On the roof of the haiden and honden are visible chigi and katsuogi, both common shrine ornamentations; the torii is a gate which marks the entrance to a sacred area but not a shrine.
A shrine may have any number of torii made of wood, metal, concrete or any other material. They can be found in different places within a shrine's precincts to signify an increased level of holiness. Torii can be found at Buddhist temples, however they are an accepted symbol of Shinto, as such are used to mark shrines on maps; the origin of the torii is unclear, no existing theory has been accepted as valid. They may for example have originated in India as a derivative of the torana gates in the monastery of Sanchi, located in central India; the sandō is the road approaching either a Buddhist temple. Its point of origin is straddled in the first case by a Shinto torii, in the second by a Buddhist sanmon, gates which mark the beginning of the shrine's or temple territory. There can be stone lanterns and other decorations at any point along its course. There can be more than one sandō, in which case the main one is called omote-sandō, or front sandō, ura-sandō, or rear sandō, etc. B
A Shinto shrine is a structure whose main purpose is to house one or more kami. Its most important building is used for the safekeeping of sacred objects, not for worship. Although only one word is used in English, in Japanese Shinto shrines may carry any one of many different, non-equivalent names like gongen, -gū, jingū, mori, myōjin, -sha, ubusuna or yashiro. Structurally, a Shinto shrine is characterized by the presence of a honden or sanctuary, where the kami is enshrined; the honden may however be absent, as for example when the shrine stands on a sacred mountain to which it is dedicated, and, worshiped directly. The honden may be missing when there are nearby altar-like structures called himorogi or objects believed capable of attracting spirits called yorishiro that can serve as a direct bond to a kami. There may be a haiden and other structures as well. However, a shrine's most important building is used for the safekeeping of sacred objects rather than for worship. Miniature shrines can be found on roadsides.
Large shrines sometimes have on their precincts miniature shrines. The portable shrines which are carried on poles during festivals enshrine kami and are therefore true shrines. In 927 CE, the Engi-shiki was promulgated; this work listed all of the 2,861 Shinto shrines existing at the time, the 3,131 official-recognized and enshrined Kami. That number has grown and exceeded this figure through the following generations. In Agency for Cultural Affairs in Japan placed the number of shrines at 79,467 affiliated with the Association of Shinto Shrines; some shrines, such as the Yasukuni Shrine are independent of any outside authority. The number of Shinto shrines in Japan is estimated to be around 100,000; this figure may, or may not, include private shrines in homes and owned by small groups, abandoned or derelict shrines, roadside Hokora. etc. Ancestors are kami to be worshiped. Yayoi-period village councils sought the advice of ancestors and other kami, developed instruments to evoke them. Yoshishiro means "approach substitute" and were conceived to attract the kami to allow them physical space, thus making kami accessible to human beings.
Village-council sessions were held in quiet spots in the mountains or in forests near great trees or other natural objects that served as yorishiro. These sacred places and their yorishiro evolved into today's shrines, whose origins can be still seen in the Japanese words for "mountain" and "forest", which can mean "shrine". Many shrines have on their grounds one of the original great yorishiro: a big tree, surrounded by a sacred rope called shimenawa; the first buildings at places dedicated to worship were huts built to house some yorishiro. A trace of this origin can be found in the term hokura, "deity storehouse", which evolved into hokora, is considered to be one of the first words for shrine. True shrines arose with the beginning of agriculture, when the need arose to attract kami to ensure good harvests; these were, just temporary structures built for a particular purpose, a tradition of which traces can be found in some rituals. Hints of the first shrines can still be found there. Ōmiwa Shrine in Nara, for example, contains no sacred images or objects because it is believed to serve the mountain on which it stands.
Those images or objects are therefore unnecessary. For the same reason, it has a worship hall but no place to house the kami. Archeology confirms that, during the Yayoi period, the most common shintai in the earliest shrines were nearby mountain peaks that supplied stream water to the plains where people lived. Besides the mentioned Ōmiwa Shrine, another important example is Mount Nantai, a phallus-shaped mountain in Nikko which constitutes Futarasan Shrine's shintai; the name Nantai means "man's body". The mountain not only provides water to the rice paddies below but has the shape of the phallic stone rods found in pre-agricultural Jōmon sites. In 905 CE, Emperor Daigo ordered a compilation of Shinto rules. Previous attempts at codification are known to have taken place, neither the Konin nor the Jogan Gishiki survive. Under the direction of Fujiwara no Tokihira, the project stalled at his death in April 909. Fujiwara no Tadahira, his brother, took charge and in 912 CE and in 927 CE the Engi-shiki was promulgated in fifty volumes.
This, the first formal codification of Shinto rites and Norito to survive, became the basis for all subsequent Shinto liturgical practice and efforts. In addition to the first ten volumes of this fifty volume work, sections in subsequent volumes addressing the Ministry of Ceremonies and the Ministry of the Imperial Household regulated Shinto worship and contained liturgical rites and regulation. Felicia Gressitt Brock published a two-volume annotated English language translation of the first ten volumes with an introduction entitled Engi-shiki; the arrival of Buddhism changed the situation, introducing to Japan the concept of the permanent shrine. A great number of Buddhist temples were built next to existing shrines in mixed complexes called jingū-ji (神宮寺, lit. shri
Matsunoo-taisha Matsunoo-jinja is a Shinto shrine located at the far western end of Shijo Street 1.3 kilometers south of the Arashiyama district of Kyoto, Japan. It is home to a spring at the base of the mountain, believed to be blessed, it is said that during the move of the capital from Nara to Kyoto, a noble saw a turtle bathing under the spring's waterfall and created a shrine there. It is one of the oldest shrines in the Kyoto area, its founding extending back to 700 CE; the restorative properties of the spring bring many local sake and miso companies to the shrine for prayers that their product will be blessed. The shrine serves a kinpaku miki during hatsumode; the shrine became the object of Imperial patronage during the early Heian period. In 965, Emperor Murakami ordered that Imperial messengers were sent to report important events to the guardian kami of Japan; these heihaku were presented to 16 shrines including the Matsunoo Shrine. From 1871 through 1946, Matsunoo-taisha was designated one of the Kanpei-taisha, meaning that it stood in the first rank of government supported shrines.
List of Shinto shrines Twenty-Two Shrines Modern system of ranked Shinto Shrines Breen and Mark Teeuwen.. Shinto in History: Ways of the Kami. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. ISBN 978-0-8248-2363-4 Ponsonby-Fane, Richard.. Studies in Shinto and Shrines. Kyoto: Ponsonby Memorial Society. OCLC 399449 ____________.. The Imperial House of Japan. Kyoto: Ponsonby Memorial Society. OCLC 194887 Official Site Official Site
Shuri Castle is a Ryukyuan gusuku in Shuri, Okinawa. Between 1429 and 1879, it was the palace of the Ryukyu Kingdom, before becoming neglected. In 1945, during the Battle of Okinawa, it was completely destroyed. After the war, the castle was re-purposed as a university campus. Beginning in 1992, the central citadel and walls were reconstructed on the original site based on historical records and memory; the date of construction is uncertain, but it was in use as a castle during the Sanzan period. It is thought that it was built during the Gusuku period, like many other castles of Okinawa; when King Shō Hashi unified the three principalities of Okinawa and established the Ryukyu Kingdom, he used Shuri Castle as a residence. At the same time, Shuri flourished as the capital and continued to do so during the Second Shō Dynasty. For 450 years from 1429, it was the royal administrative center of the Ryukyu Kingdom, it was the focal point of foreign trade, as well as the political and cultural heart of the Ryukyu Islands.
According to records, Shuri Castle was burned down several times, rebuilt each time. During the reign of Shō Nei, samurai forces from the Japanese feudal domain of Satsuma seized Shuri Castle on 6 May 1609; the Japanese withdrew soon afterwards, returning King Shō Nei to his throne two years and the castle and city to the Ryukyuans, though the kingdom was now a vassal state under Satsuma's suzerainty and would remain so for 250 years. The American Commodore Perry, when he came to Okinawa in the 1850s, forced his way into Shuri Castle on two separate occasions, but was denied an audience with the king both times; the Kingdom was annexed by Japan in 1879, the king was removed and the castle was used as a barracks by the Imperial Japanese Army. The Japanese garrison withdrew in 1896, but not before having created a series of tunnels and caverns below it. In 1908, Shuri City bought the castle from the Japanese government, however they did not have funding to renovate it. In 1923, thanks to Japanese architect Ito Chuta, the Seiden survived demolition after being re-designated a prefectural Shinto shrine known as Okinawa Shrine.
In 1925, it became a national treasure. Despite its decline, historian George H. Kerr described the castle as "one of the most magnificent castle sites to be found anywhere in the world, for it commands the countryside below for miles around and looks toward distant sea horizons on every side." During World War II, the Imperial Japanese Army had set up its headquarters in the castle underground, by early 1945, had established complex lines of defense and communications in the regions around Shuri, across the southern part of the island as a whole. Beginning on May 25, 1945, as the final part of the Okinawa campaign, the American battleship USS Mississippi shelled it for three days. On May 27, it burned. Due to this, the 32nd Japanese Army retreated southward and the United States Marines secured Shuri Castle. On 29 May, Maj. Gen. Pedro del Valle—commanding the 1st Marine Division—ordered Captain Julian D Dusenbury of Company A, 1st Battalion, 5th Marines to capture the castle, which represented both strategic and psychological blows for the Japanese and was a milestone in the campaign.
After the war, the University of the Ryukyus was established in 1950 on the castle site, where it remained until 1975. In 1958, Shureimon was reconstructed and, starting from 1992, the 20th anniversary of reversion, the main buildings and surrounding walls of the central castle were reconstructed. At present, the entire area around the castle has been established as "Shuri Castle Park". In 2000, along with other gusuku and related sites, it was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Unlike Japanese castles, Shuri Castle was influenced by Chinese architecture, with functional and decorative elements similar to that seen in the Forbidden City; the gates and various buildings were painted in red with lacquer and eaves colorfully decorated, roof tiles made of Goryeo and red Ryukyuan tiles, the decoration of each part using the king's dragon. Given that Nanden and Bandokoro were both used for reception and entertainment of the Satsuma clan, a Japanese style design was used here only. Ryukyuan elements dominate.
Like other gusuku, the castle was built using Ryukyuan limestone, being surrounded by an outer shell, built during the Second Shō Dynasty from the second half of the 15th century to the first half of the 16th century. Okushoin-en is the only surviving garden in a gusuku in the Ryukyu Islands, which made use of the limestone bedrock and arranged using local cycads; the current renovation is designed with a focus on the castle's role as a cultural or administrative/political center, rather than one for military purposes. The buildings that have been restored as original wooden buildings are only in the main citadel. Seiden was rebuilt using wood from Taiwan and elsewhere after rituals blessing the removal of large trees from mountains in the Yanbaru region of Okinawa took place. Other buildings, such as Nanden or Hokuden were only restored as facades, with interiors made using modern materials such as steel and concrete. Old walls remain in part, were excavated and incorporated during the construction of the new castle wall, forming the only surviving external remains of the original Shuri Castle.
Due to its central role in Ryukyuan political and religious life, Shuri is composed of and surrounded by various sites of historical interest. The Shuri Castle complex itself can be divided into three main zones, namely a central administrative area, an eastern living and ceremonial space (behind the
The karamon or karakado is a type of gate seen in Japanese architecture. It is characterized by the usage of karahafu, an undulating bargeboard peculiar to Japan. Karamon are used at the entrances of Japanese castles, Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines, have been a symbol of authority. Although kara can be translated as meaning "China" or "Tang", this type of roof with undulating bargeboards first appeared during the late Heian period, it was named thus because the word kara could mean "noble" or "elegant", was added to names of objects considered grand or intricate regardless of origin. The karahafu developed during the Heian period and is shown in picture scrolls to decorate gates and palanquins; the oldest existing karahafu is found at Hōryū-ji temple. The karahafu was used only in temples and aristocratic gateways, but starting from the beginning of the Azuchi–Momoyama period, it became an important architectural element in the construction of a daimyō's mansions and castles; the karamon entrance was reserved for the shōgun during his onari visits to the retainer, or for the reception of the emperor at shogunate establishments.
A structure associated with these social connections imparted special meaning. Karamon would become a means to proclaim the prestige of a building and functioned as a symbol of both religious and secular architecture. In the Tokugawa shogunate, the karamon gates were a powerful symbol of authority reflected in architecture. Mukaikaramon is the most common form of karamon, features two karahafu at the front and back of the gate; this type of gate may incorporate a karahafu in the middle of the roof, or the entire gable itself may be a curved structure. Hirakaramon are distinguished with two karahafu on the left and right sides of the gate; this type of gate was used at palaces, was once called miyukimon. Karayotsuashimon is an ornate style of karamon that features four undulating gables on all sides of the gate. A good example of this type of gate can be found at Nikkō Tōshō-gū. Karahafu Japanese architecture Japanese Buddhist architecture Japanese castle Buddhist temples in Japan Shinto shrine List of National Treasures of Japan