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大阪天満宮 Osaka-Tenmanguu Osaka Tenmangu Shrine

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The origin of the Osaka Tenmangu Shrine dates back to a political figure Sugawara Michizane from the mid-Heian period. In 901, Fujiwara Tokihira, a political opponent secured the demoting of Michizane to Dazai Prefecture. On his way to Dazai, he visited Taishogun Shrine, which still exists.
   At Michizane's death, a series of ominous events occurred, such as plague, the death of a prince, and a bolt of thunder striking Seiryo-den (the emperor's residence). The Imperial Court, believing these events to be a curse from Michizane, reinstated his honor.
   A strange story spread in Kyoto that, in 949, seven pine trees suddenly appeared at Taishogun Shrine and gave off an unusual light. The Murakami Emperor heard this story and decided to build a Tenmangu shrine dedicated to Michizane. This is the Osaka Tenmangu Shrine.
   The present main building was rebuilt in 1843 in Gongen-style, and has a late-Edo spirit. The tasteful paintings on the sliding doors are by Michihiko Tsubata or Kochu Ueda. These commemorate the shrine's 1,025th anniversary in 1927.
   Every year on the 24th July, the shrine holds the Tenjin Festival, one of Japan's three major festivals and one of Osaka's three major summer festivals.
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