Mount Gusuku

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Mount Gusuku
城山
Ie island.jpg
Mount Gusuku, the highest point on Ie Island Iejima, Okinawa Prefecture
Highest point
Elevation 172.2 m (565 ft)
Coordinates 26°43′11″N 127°48′26″E / 26.71972°N 127.80722°E / 26.71972; 127.80722Coordinates: 26°43′11″N 127°48′26″E / 26.71972°N 127.80722°E / 26.71972; 127.80722
Geography
Mount Gusuku is located in Japan
Mount Gusuku
Mount Gusuku
Mount Gusuku on Ie Island

Mount Gusuku (城山?, Gusuku-yama, Kunigami: Tatchuu) is a mountain located on Ie Island in Ie, Okinawa.[1] The mountain rises 172.2 m (565.0 ft) on Iejima to the northwest of Okinawa Island and is the highest point on the island.[2][3] Mount Gusuku is considered a symbol of Iejima due to its distinctive conical shape.

The mountain sits on the eastern side of the island and is clearly visible from the main island of Okinawa and the East China Sea. The outline of Mount Gusuku can be clearly seen from the Motobu Peninsula on Okinawa Island and Sesoko Island. The mountain has historically served as a nautical landmark and appears in nautical charts from the medieval period.[1][3][4]

Etymology[edit]

The Japanese reading for the mountain is "Shiro-yama;" however, in Okinawan, it is pronounced "Gusuku-yama." The meaning of in both languages is "castle." In Kunigami, the mountain is referred to as Tatchuu (タッチュー?).[2]

Geology[edit]

Mount Gusuku is 70 million years older than the rest of Iejima. The mountain was formed by a unique offscrape phenomenon: an older level of bedrock was displaced by newer bedrock to form an admixture of the two.[1]

Utaki[edit]

Mount Gusuku is a site considered sacred in the Ryukyuan religion. An utaki, or shrine of the Ryukyuan religion, is located halfway to the summit of the mountain, and the path leading to the shrine is marked by torii gates. Historically the utaki at Mount Gusuku has been utilized for prayers for safe sea voyages and crops.[1][3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d 城山(伊江島タッチュー) [Mount Gusuku (Iejima Tatchū)] (in Japanese). Ie, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan: Village of Ie. 2007. Retrieved Jan 6, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b 伊江島 城山(タッチュー) [Iejima Gusuku (Tatchū)] (in Japanese). Okinawa Joho IMA. 2006. Retrieved Jan 6, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c "伊江島" [Iejima]. Nihon Rekishi Chimei Taikei (in Japanese). Tokyo: Shogakukan. 2012. OCLC 173191044. Retrieved 2012-12-07. 
  4. ^ 城山(タッチュー)の情報 [Information on Mount Gusuku (Tatchū)] (in Japanese). Ie, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan: Village of Ie. 2007. Retrieved Jan 6, 2013.