Kameyama Castle (Mie)

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Kameyama Castle
Kameyama, Mie Prefecture, Japan
Tamon-yagura of Kameyama Castle
KAMEYAMA-castle Watchtower Kameyama,Mie.jpg
Kameyama Castle Tamon-yagura
Coordinates Coordinates: 34°51′22.13″N 136°27′2.13″E / 34.8561472°N 136.4505917°E / 34.8561472; 136.4505917
Type flatlands-style Japanese castle
Site information
Open to
the public
Site history
Built 1590
Built by Okamoto Munenori
In use Edo period
Demolished 1873

Kameyama Castle (亀山城, Kameyama-jō) is a Japanese castle located in Kameyama, northern Mie Prefecture, Japan. At the end of the Edo period, Kameyama Castle was home to the Ishikawa clan, daimyō of Ise-Kameyama Domain. The castle was also known as "Kochō-jō" (粉蝶城).


The original Kameyama Castle was founded by Seki Sanetada in 1264 to the west of the present Kameyama Castle, and was one of the five fortifications guarding the clan domains in northern Ise Province. It came under occasional attack by the Oda clan to the north, and was overrun when Oda Nobunaga extended his authority over Ise Province. When Seki Kazumasa was relocated to Shirakawa in 1590, Okamoto Munenori, a retainer of Toyotomi Hideyoshi was given control of the castle. Okamoto moved the castle to the southeast and reconstructed all the main structures. [1]

Under the Tokugawa shogunate, the castle became the headquarters of Ise-Kameyama Domain, and the surrounding castle town prospered as a post station on the Tōkaidō highway connecting Edo with Kyoto. In 1632, while under control of the Miyake clan, the tenshu (donjon) was demolished in error by Horio Torizane, who had confused ambiguously-worded orders by the shogunate with a command to rebuild the keep of Kameyama Castle in Tanba Province. Despite the error, the shogunate refused permission to rebuild the donjon. From 1644 and 1648, Honda Toshitsugu received permission to build a yagura on the raised base of the former donjon. Named the "Tamon-yagura", this is one of the few surviving structures of the castle and was declared a historic site by the prefectural government in 1953.[2] In 1873, during the Meiji Restoration, most of the castle was torn down. [3]

After the Meiji Restoration, the new Meiji government ordered that the structures of the castle be destroyed in 1873. Aside from the Tamon-yagura, only the ruins of the 15-meter-high walls remain. A Buddhist temple of recent origin, Ōmoto-ji, and the Kameyama City History Museum stand on the grounds.


  • Schmorleitz, Morton S. (1974). Castles in Japan. Tokyo: Charles E. Tuttle Co. pp. 144–145. ISBN 0-8048-1102-4. 
  • Motoo, Hinago (1986). Japanese Castles. Tokyo: Kodansha. ISBN 0-87011-766-1. 
  • Mitchelhill, Jennifer (2004). Castles of the Samurai: Power and Beauty. Tokyo: Kodansha. ISBN 4-7700-2954-3. 
  • Turnbull, Stephen (2003). Japanese Castles 1540–1640. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 1-84176-429-9. 

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Kansai Collection: Kameyama Castle. Organization of Kansai Unity. Accessed May 15, 2008.
  2. ^ Mie Tourism Guide: Old Kameyama Castle. Mie Prefecture. Accessed May 15, 2008.
  3. ^ Kameyama Castle (Ise). SamuraiWiki. Accessed May 15, 2008.