Hikone Castle/彦根城_01

2012.07.24 [PLACES,WHAT'S NEW]

Japanese Castle – Hikone Castle 彦根城 Part 1

Built in the wake of the Battle of Sekigahara, the defensive Hikone Castle
すべては「関ヶ原の戦い」から始まった! 国宝、彦根城が築城された理由 

Hikone Castle is one of only 12 castles across Japan with its original tower keep, and one of just four
registered as National Treasures. The hilltop castle was constructed in 1603 under the orders of Ii Naomasa.
For his efforts in the Battle of Sekigahara, Naomasa had been awarded the lands around Hikone with the
castle at nearby Sawayama, however due to its inconvenient location and war torn condition he opted for
the construction of a new castle closer to lake Biwa. Naomasa had been badly wounded in the battle which
took place in 1600, and never fully recovered, dying in 1602. His sons, Naotsugu and later, Naotaka oversaw
the construction that took 20 years to complete. The castle was held by the Ii clan from 1622 until 1874,
some six years after the end of the feudal era.








Today the main keep of the castle remains standing, along with a number of buildings and structures 
classified Important National Cultural assets, including the Tenbin Yagura, or balance Scale Turret, 
the Nishinomaru Sanju Yagura (West Wing Three Story Turret), the Taikomon, or Drum gate Turret, 
and the castle’s original stables. The extensive gardens are beautiful year round, and feature a number
of traditional structures and tea houses in the Keyaki Goten, along with one of the few remaining castle
palace residences and living quarters of the lords.


なっています。また、玄宮園 (げんきゅうえん:写真)とよばれる大名庭園や その庭園内に建てられた鳳翔台 




The secret behind the castle’s survival

Hikone Castle was saved by the Emperor Meiji.
Japans’ long feudal period ended abruptly in 1867 when the Tokugawa Shogunate collapsed, and power
reverted to the Emperor in 1868. Seen as reminders of that feudal past, many castles were abandoned 
and destroyed. The Meiji Emperor happened to be touring the Shiga area in the early period of his rule, 
and having seen the beauty of Hikone Castle, requested it be preserved. The castle was listed as a
National Treasure in 1952.



そして1952年、国宝に 指定されることになるのです。


>>More secrets of Hikone Castle

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2012.07.24 PLACES Hikone Castle/彦根城_02


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