Kasuga-taisha

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Kasuga-taisha
春日大社
Kasuga-taisha11bs3200.jpg
The middle gate and hall
Information
Type Twenty-Two Shrines
Chokusaisha
Beppyo jinja, Shikinaisya
Former kanpeitaisha
Dedicated to Takemikazuchi-o
Futsunushi
Ame no Koyane
Himegami
Founded 768
Reisai Kasuga-no-matsuri
(Kasuga-sai: 春日祭) (13th March)
Honden style Kasuga-zukuri
Address 160 Kasugano-chō, Nara-shi, Nara-ken
Website Homepage

Shinto torii icon vermillion.svg Glossary of Shinto

Kasuga Grand Shrine (春日大社 Kasuga-taisha?) is a Shinto shrine in the city of Nara, in Nara Prefecture, Japan.[1] Established in 768 AD and rebuilt several times over the centuries, it is the shrine of the Fujiwara family. The interior is famous for its many bronze lanterns, as well as the many stone lanterns that lead up the shrine.

The architectural style Kasuga-zukuri takes its name from Kasuga Shrine's honden (sanctuary).

Kasuga Shrine, and the Kasugayama Primeval Forest near it, are registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as part of the "Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara".

The path to Kasuga Shrine passes through Deer Park. In Deer Park, deer are able to roam freely and are believed to be sacred messengers of the Shinto gods that inhabit the shrine and surrounding mountainous terrain. Kasuga Shrine and the deer have been featured in several paintings and works of art of the Nambokucho Period.[2] Over three thousand stone lanterns line the way. The Man'yo Botanical Garden, Nara is adjacent to the shrine.

History[edit]

The shrine became the object of Imperial patronage during the early Heian period.[3] In 965, Emperor Murakami ordered that Imperial messengers were sent to report important events to the guardian kami of Japan. These heihaku were initially presented to 16 shrines including the Kasuga Shrine.[4]

From 1871 through 1946, Kasuga Shrine was officially designated one of the Kanpei-taisha (官幣大社?), meaning that it stood in the first rank of government supported shrines.[5]

Festivals[edit]

During the festivals of Setsubun Mantoro (February 2–4) and Obon Mantoro (August 14–15), the thousands shrine lanterns of Kasuga-taisha are all lit at once.[6]

March 13 is the Kasuga Matsuri ("Monkey Festival"), which features gagaku and bugaku dance performances.[6]

Images[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Richard, Ponsonby-Fane. (1964) Visiting Famous Shrines in Japan, pp. 221-251.
  2. ^ Birmingham Museum of Art (2010). Birmingham Museum of Art : guide to the collection. [Birmingham, Ala]: Birmingham Museum of Art. p. 46. ISBN 978-1-904832-77-5. 
  3. ^ Breen, John et al. (2000). Shinto in History: Ways of the Kami, pp. 74-75.
  4. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1962). Studies in Shinto and Shrines, pp. 116-117.
  5. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial House of Japan, pp. 124.
  6. ^ a b "Kasuga Taisha". Hattori Foundation (est.1919) - The Yamasa Institute. Retrieved March 12, 2010. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°40′53″N 135°50′54″E / 34.68139°N 135.84833°E / 34.68139; 135.84833