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Atago Shrine (Tokyo)
The Atago Shrine (愛宕神社, Atago Jinja) in Minato, Tokyo, Japan is a Shinto
Shinto
shrine established in 1603 (the eighth year of the Keichō era) on the order of shōgun Tokugawa Ieyasu. The current shrine on the site dates from 1958. The shrine is located on Atago Hill, which is 26 meters above sea level. In old times, the shrine had an excellent view of Tokyo, now obscured by high rises. The very steep stairs leading to the shrine are also famous, as they represent success in life. According to legend, a young samurai dared to ride his horse up the stairs to deliver plum blossoms to the shōgun
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Kibitsu-zukuri
. Kibitsu-zukuri
Kibitsu-zukuri
(吉備津造), kibi-zukuri (吉備造) or hiyoku irimoya-zukuri (入母屋造, paired wing hip-and-gable roof style) is a traditional Japanese Shinto architectural style characterized by four dormer gables, two per lateral side, on the roof of a very large honden (sanctuary).[1] The gables are set at a right angle to the main roof ridge, and the honden is part of a single complex also including a haiden (worship hall)
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Tamagaki
A tamagaki (玉垣) is a fence surrounding a Japanese Shinto shrine, a sacred area or an imperial palace.[1] Believed to have been initially just a brushwood barrier of trees, tamagaki have since been made of a variety of materials including wood, stone and—in recent years—concrete
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Karahafu
The karahafu (kara-hafu) (唐破風) is a type of gable with a style peculiar to Japan. The characteristic shape is the undulating curve at the top. This gable is common in traditional architecture, including Japanese castles, Buddhist temples, and Shinto shrines. Roofing materials such as tile and bark may be used as coverings. The face beneath the gable may be flush with the wall below, or it may terminate on a lower roof.Contents1 History 2 Images 3 See also 4 Notes 5 ReferencesHistory[edit] Although kara (唐) can be translated as meaning "China" or "Tang", this type of roof with undulating bargeboards is an invention of Japanese carpenters in the late Heian period.[1] It was named thus because the word kara could also mean "noble" or "elegant", and was often added to names of objects considered grand or intricate regardless of origin.[2] The karahafu developed during the Heian period and is shown in picture scrolls to decorate gates, corridors, and palanquins
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Karamon
The karamon or karakado (唐門, chinese gate) is a type of gate seen in Japanese architecture. It is characterized by the usage of karahafu, an undulating bargeboard peculiar to Japan
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Katsuogi
Katsuogi
Katsuogi
(鰹木, 堅魚木, 勝男木, 葛緒木) or Kasoegi (斗木) are short, decorative logs found on Japanese and Shinto
Shinto
architecture. They are placed at a right angle along the ridge of roofs, and are usually featured in religious or imperial architecture. Katsuogi predate Buddhist influence and is an architectural element endemic to Japan.[1] They are often placed on the roof with chigi, a forked ornamentation used on Shinto
Shinto
shrines. Today, katsuogi and chigi are used exclusively on Shinto
Shinto
buildings and can be used to distinguish them from other religious structures, such as Buddhist temples in Japan.Contents1 Origin 2 Design 3 See also 4 Notes 5 ReferencesOrigin[edit] Katsuogi
Katsuogi
placed along the roof ridgepole at Ise ShrineThe original purpose of the katsuogi is uncertain
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Ken (architecture)
The ken (間) is a traditional Japanese unit of length, equal to six Japanese feet
Japanese feet
(shaku). The exact value has varied over time and location but has generally been a little shorter than 2 meters (6 ft 7 in).[1][2] It is now standardized as 1 9/11 meter. Although mostly supplanted by the metric system, this unit is a common measurement in Japanese architecture, where it is used as a proportion for the intervals between the pillars of traditional-style buildings. In this context, it is commonly translated as "bay". The length also appears in other contexts, such as the standard length of the bō staff in Japanese martial arts
Japanese martial arts
and the standard dimensions of the tatami mats
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Komainu
Komainu
Komainu
(狛犬), often called lion-dogs in English, are statue pairs of lion-like creatures either guarding the entrance or the inner shrine of many Japanese Shinto shrines or kept inside the inner shrine itself, where they are not visible to the public. The first type, born during the Edo period, is called sandō komainu (参道狛犬, visiting road Komainu), the second and much older type jinnai komainu (陣内狛犬, shrine inside komainu).[1] They can sometimes be found also at Buddhist temples, nobility residences or even private homes.Contents1 Symbolic meaning 2 History 3 Foxes at Inari shrines 4 Gallery 5 See also 6 Notes 7 ReferencesSymbolic meaning[edit]An un-gyō komainuMeant to ward off evil spirits, modern komainu statues usually are almost identical, but one has the mouth open, the other closed. (However, exceptions exist, where both komainu have their mouth either open or closed.[2]) The two forms are called a-gyō (阿形, lit
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Mon (architecture)
Mon (門, literally gate) is a generic Japanese term for gate often used, either alone or as a suffix, in referring to the many gates used by Buddhist temples, Shinto shrines
Shinto shrines
and traditional-style buildings and castles.Contents1 Significance 2 Description 3 Variations 4 Common types 5 Photo gallery 6 ReferencesSignificance[edit] Unlike gates of secular buildings, most temple and shrine gates are purely symbolic elements of liminality, as they cannot be completely closed and just mark the transition between the mundane and the sacred.[1][2] In many cases, for example that of the sanmon, a temple gate has purifying, cleansing properties. Description[edit] Gate
Gate
size is measured in ken, where a ken is the interval between two pillars of a traditional-style buildings
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Sandō
A sandō (参道, visiting path) in Japanese architecture
Japanese architecture
is the road approaching either a Shinto shrine
Shinto shrine
or a Buddhist temple.[1] Its point of origin is usually 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. The word dō (道) can refer both to a path or road, and to the path of one's life's efforts.[2] There can also be stone lanterns and other decorations at any point along its course. A sandō can be called a front sandō (表参道, omote-sandō), if it is the main entrance, or a rear sandō (裏参道, ura-sandō) if it is a secondary point of entrance, especially to the rear; side sandō (脇参道, waki-sandō) are also sometimes found
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Shōrō
The shōrō, shurō (鐘楼, lit. bell tower) or kanetsuki-dō (鐘突堂, lit. bell-striking hall) is the bell tower of a Buddhist temple in Japan, housing the temple's bonshō (梵鐘). It can also be found at some Shinto shrines which used to be also shrines (see article Shinbutsu shūgō), as for example Nikkō Tōshō-gū. Two main types exist, the older hakamagoshi (袴腰), which has walls, and the more recent fukihanachi (吹放ち) or fukinuki (吹貫・吹抜き), which does not.[1] History[edit] During the Nara period
Nara period
(710–794), immediately after the arrival of Buddhism in Japan
Buddhism in Japan
bell towers were 3 x 2 bay, 2 storied buildings.[2] A typical temple garan had normally two, one to the left and one to the right of the kyōzō (or kyō-dō), the sūtra repository
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Sōrin
The sōrin (相輪, lit. alternate rings) is the vertical shaft (finial) which tops a Japanese pagoda, whether made of stone or wood.[1][note 1] The sōrin of a wooden pagoda is usually made of bronze and can be over 10 meters tall.[2] That of a stone pagoda is also of stone and less than a meter long. The sōrin is divided in several sections possessing a symbolic meaning and, as a whole, in turn itself represents a pagoda.[3] Although quintessentially Buddhist, in Japan pagodas and their sōrin can be found both at Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. This is because until the Kami
Kami
and Buddhas Separation Act of 1868 a Shinto shrine was normally also a Buddhist temple and vice versa
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Tokyō
The tokyō (斗栱・斗拱, more often 斗きょう)[note 1] (also called kumimono (組物) or masugumi (斗組)) is a system of supporting blocks (斗 or 大斗, masu or daito, lit. block or big block) and brackets (肘木, hijiki, lit. elbow wood) supporting the eaves of a Japanese building, usually part of a Buddhist temple or Shinto shrine.[1] The use of tokyō is made necessary by the extent to which the eaves protrude, a functionally essential element of Japanese Buddhist architecture. The system has however always had also an important decorative function. Like most architectural elements in Japan, the system is Chinese in origin (on the subject, see the article Dougong) but has evolved since its arrival into several original forms. In its simplest configuration, the bracket system has a single projecting bracket and a single block, and is called hitotesaki
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Nakazonae
Nakazonae
Nakazonae
(中備・中具) are decorative intercolumnar struts installed in the intervals between bracket complexes (tokyō) at Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines in Japan.[1] In origin they were necessary to help support the roof; however, at the end of the 10th century the invention of the hidden roof[note 1] made them superfluous.[2] They remained in use, albeit in a purely decorative role, and are typical of the Wayō
Wayō
style. The Zenshūyō style used by Zen
Zen
temples has instead bracket complexes even between posts.Contents1 Kentozuka1.1 Minozuka2 Hana-hijiki 3 Warizuka 4 Kaerumata 5 Types of nakazonae 6 Notes 7 ReferencesKentozuka[edit] The simplest of these struts are the kentozuka (間斗束, lit. interval block strut, see photo above) composed of a short post and a bearing block.[3] Minozuka[edit] Similar to the kentozuka is the fan-shaped strut called minozuka (蓑束, lit
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Torii
A torii (鳥居, literally bird abode, Japanese pronunciation: [to.ɾi.i]) is a traditional Japanese gate most commonly found at the entrance of or within a Shinto
Shinto
shrine, where it symbolically marks the transition from the mundane to sacred.[1] The presence of a torii at the entrance is usually the simplest way to identify Shinto
Shinto
shrines, and a small torii icon represents them on Japanese road maps.[note 1] The first appearance of Torii
Torii
gates in Japan
Japan
can be reliably pinpointed to at least the mid- Heian period
Heian period
because they are mentioned in a text written in 922.[1] The oldest existing stone torii was built in the 12th century and belongs to a Hachiman Shrine
Hachiman Shrine
in Yamagata prefecture
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