NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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中将実方朝臣の墓 Chuujou-sanekata-ason-no-haka The Grave of Fujiwara no Sanekata Ason

Jp En

The grave of Fujiwara no Sanekata Ason is in Medeshima-Shiote, Natori, Miyagi Prefecture. Fujiwara no Sanekata is known as a young Heian period nobleman who was good-looking and gracious. Also, he is known as the model of the character Hikari Genji in the classic 'The Tale of Genji'. Moreover, he is counted among the Thirty-six Poet Immortals.

In 955, he was banished for striking a rival poet, Fujiwara no Yukinari, on the head in front of the emperor. He received a royal command to travel to see the old ruins in several areas. In 998, he is said to have fallen from his horse and died.

Later, the poet Matsuo Basho visited this site and sang a song here. Nearby is a monument commemorating Basho's visit. The small grave of Fujiwara no Sanekata stands alone within the tranquil forest.
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百人一首 Hyakunin-issyu 'Hyakunin-isshu'

Jp En

The 'Hyakunin-isshu' is a compilation of 100 exceptional poems from 100 famous poets, each individually chosen in chronological order.

The compilation was made by Sadaie Fujiwara, a poet of the Kamakura period, and the poems were carefully selected from the 'Kokinshu' and 'Shin-Kokinshu'.

The making of the compilation first started when Sadaie was requested to choose a poem to put on the fusuma door of Rensho Utsunomiya's villa, the Ogura-sanso, in Sagano, Kyoto. The compilation was first named the 'Ogura-sanso-shikishi-waka' or 'Sagasanso-shikishi-waka', but it is most famously known as 'Ogura-hyakunin-isshu'.

After the completion of the 'Ogura-hyakunin-isshu', many other private compilations of 100 poems, each from a different poet, followed. These include the 'Gosen-hyakunin-isshu', 'Genji-hyakunin-isshu', and 'Nyobo-hyakunin-isshu'. Additionally, there is a game called 'utakaruta', which is based on the 'Ogura-hyakunin-isshu'. This 'utakaruta' game started during the mid-Edo period and continues even now.
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城ヶ島 Jougashima Jogashima Island

Jp En

Jogashima is a small island located near Misaki port, in Miura, Kanagawa Prefecture, at the southern edge of the Miura Peninsula.

Jogashima features rock strata that is ten million years old. The island is long and narrow from east to west (1.8km), 4 km around and covers a total area of 0.99m2. It is the biggest natural island in Kanagawa Prefecture and faces the Pacific to the south and Misaki fishing port to the north.

The island is just like a natural stratum museum; many changes in the earth's crust have led to curved, sharp and shifted strata that are exposed in different areas around the island.

There are many sightseeing spots on Jogashima, such as a tablet incised with the poetry of Kitahara Hakushu, Jogashima Park (one of the 50 major parks), narcissi (one of Japan's top 100 sites for flowers), Umiu Observation Deck, the cave entrance of Umanose, Jogashima lighthouse, Aburatsubo Gulf (one of 50 scenes), Awazaki lighthouse and Keikyu Aburatsubo Marine Park.

Jogashima is small but full of sightseeing places and with a long history, too.
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近水園 Omizuen Omizuen

Jp En

Omizuen was the garden of the Kinoshita clan and the Ashimori domain head. It is located at the foot of Mt Miyaji, and is constructed around a pond at its center. It is unclear when the garden was built, but the 6th head, Kinoshita Kinsada is reckoned to have built it in the early 18th century. It is a Zen garden designed by Enshu.

Omizuen is one of the biggest gardens in Okayama prefecture, like Korakuen in Okayama City and Shurakuen in Tsuyama City.

There is a teahouse called Ginpukaku just near the pond. The view from the house is especially beautiful because the garden harmonizes with the backdrop of Mt. Uno behind it. Ginpukaku is made from wood that was left over from the construction of Kyoto Imperial Palace. The roof used to be thatched but is now covered with copper sheeting.

Within the garden you can see a monument inscribed with a poem by Kinoshita Rigen, a local poet of the Shirakaba School, and there are also Maria Lanterns for clandestine Christians.
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俳聖殿 Haiseiden Haisei-den

Jp En

Haisei-den was built in 1942 to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the birth of the famous haiku poet Matsuo Basho. It is located in Iga City, Mie prefecture. The building has been designated as a Cultural Asset of Iga.

Haisei-den is in Ueno Park (the site of Iga Ueno Castle). The building has an unusual design: it is in the shape of Basho on one of his trips. A roof corresponds to his hat, the octagonal eaves to his sash, the pillars to his stick, and a wooden frame to his face. Inside, there is a life-sized statue in Iga ware of Basho seated.

Katsu Kawasaki, a councillor born in Mie, built this strange and magnificent building with money from his own pocket.

On October 12 every year, on the anniversary of Basho's death, a Basho Festival is held to honor his memory and achievements. Moreover, haiku and renku poems from all over Japan are dedicated to Basho's statue, and the statue is opened to the public on this day only.

This building expresses both the traveler and architecture at the same time. There is no similar example and Haisei-den is a masterpiece of unusual architectural art.
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犀川 Saigawa Sai River

Jp En

Sai River is a class B river that runs through Kanazawa, Ishikawa prefecture. The entire length of the river is 34.25km.

A poet and writer, Murou Saisei was born near the river. Sai of Saisei, who wrote the poem 'Sai River' is said to have come from Sai River.

There are two beautiful rivers in Kanazawa: Asano River in the north and Sai River in the south. Izumi Kyoka mentioned Asano River as a 'woman river' in her novel 'Woman of Yuki'. Sai River is sometimes called 'man river'. Sai River is also known as Chrysanthemum Water River.

In the early Edo period, water was brought from the headstream of Sai River to the city center. This is called the Tatsumi water diversion and is still used today. It plays an important role as a water source for Kanazawa people and has been loved for many years. Sai River is an essential part of the Kanazawa people's life.
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NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉 - 日本語に切り替える NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉 - to english

"Nippon-kichi" leads you to places, people and things that reveal a certain Japanese aesthetic.

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