Dazaifu, Fukuoka

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Location of Dazaifu in Fukuoka Prefecture
Location of Dazaifu in Fukuoka Prefecture
Dazaifu is located in Japan
Location in Japan
Coordinates: 33°31′N 130°31′E / 33.517°N 130.517°E / 33.517; 130.517Coordinates: 33°31′N 130°31′E / 33.517°N 130.517°E / 33.517; 130.517
Country Japan
Region Kyushu
Prefecture Fukuoka Prefecture
 • Mayor Yoshirō Satō
 • Total 29.58 km2 (11.42 sq mi)
Population (May 31, 2011)
 • Total 70,587
 • Density 2,386.31/km2 (6,180.5/sq mi)
Time zone Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)
- Tree Kusunoki
- Flower Ume blossom
Address 1-1-1 Kanzeon-ji, Dazaifu-shi, Fukuoka-ken
Phone number 092-921-2121
Website www.city.dazaifu.fukuoka.jp

Dazaifu (太宰府市 Dazaifu-shi?) is a city located in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan.[1] Nearby cities include Ōnojō and Chikushino. Although mostly mountainous, it does have arable land used for paddy fields and market gardening.

As of May 31, 2011, the city has an estimated population of 70,587 with 29,355 households and a population density of 2,386.31 persons per km². The total area is 29.58 km².

The city was officially founded on April 1, 1982, although it has been important historically for more than a thousand years.[when?]


Dazaifu was the imperial office governing Kyūshū (corresponding to Tagajō in Tōhoku) after it was moved from present-day Fukuoka City in 663. Dazaifu hosted foreign embassies from China and Korea. Kōrokan, a guesthouse for foreign embassies, was also established. From the Nara period through the Heian period and until the Kamakura period, Dazaifu was one of the military and administrative centers of Japan. In the Heian period, Dazaifu was a place of exile for high-ranking courtiers. Nobles exiled there include Sugawara no Michizane[2] His grave is at Dazaifu Tenman-gū.

Dazaifu was sometimes attacked by rebels. At other times the head of Dazaifu himself raised a rebellion.[chronology citation needed]

With the invasions of the Mongols and the decline of imperial authority, Dazaifu became less politically significant. In the Muromachi period the political center of Kyūshū was moved to Hakata.

In medieval times, Dazaifu was the base of the Shōni clan.[1] The Shōni were later expelled by the Ōuchi clan.

In the Edo period, Dazaifu was a part of the Kuroda han until its abolition in 1873.


Tenman-gū shrine in Dazaifu.

The Kyushu National Museum opened on October 16, 2005. A wood and glass building in a hilly landscape, it hosts collections of Japanese artifacts related to the history of Kyūshū.

Kōmyōzen-ji is a Zen temple famous for its stone garden. It was built during the Kamakura period just next to Dazaifu Tenman-gū. All three are within walking distance of Nishitetsu Dazaifu Station. Another temple, Kanzeon-ji, was built in the 8th century. It was once the chief Buddhist temple on Kyūshū[3] and houses a number of historical, artistic, and religious treasures.

The ruins of the medieval Dazaifu Administrative Buildings, also located within walking distance of Dazaifu Station, are today a public park.

There is small museum about Sugawara no Michizane, who died in exile in Dazaifu in 903.[1]


There are several universities in the city:

Area primary and secondary schools are administered by the Dazaifu Board of Education.

  • Dazaifu Minami Elementary School
  • Dazaifu Higashi Elementary School
  • Dazaifu Nishi Elementary School
  • Dazaifu Elementary School
  • Mizuki Nishi Elementary School
  • Mizuki Elementary School
  • Kokubu Elementary School
  • Gakugyouin Junior High School
  • Dazaifu Higashi Junior High School
  • Dazaifu Nishi Junior High School
  • Dazaifu Junior High School
  • Dazaifu Senior High School
  • Chikushidai High School
Stone garden at Kōmyōzen-ji

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Dazaifu" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 150, p. 150, at Google Books.
  2. ^ Nussbaum, "Sugawara no Michizane" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 908, p. 908, at Google Books.
  3. ^ Kanzeon-ji, explanatory plaques on site.


External links[edit]

Media related to Dazaifu, Fukuoka at Wikimedia Commons