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Aerial view (courtesy of Hakodate City)
Location in Japan
Location in Japan
Shown within Hokkaido
Location in Japan
Location in Japan
Shinoridate (Japan)
LocationHakodate, Hokkaidō, Japan
Coordinates41°45′57″N 140°49′20″E / 41.765825°N 140.822251°E / 41.765825; 140.822251Coordinates: 41°45′57″N 140°49′20″E / 41.765825°N 140.822251°E / 41.765825; 140.822251
Altitude17 to 25 m (56 to 82 ft)
TypeFortified residence
Length50 to 65 metres (164 to 213 ft)
Width70 to 80 metres (230 to 260 ft)
Area4,100 square metres (44,000 sq ft) (enclosure)
19,960.14 square metres (214,849.2 sq ft) (Historic Site)
Site notes
OwnershipNational Historic Site
Public accessYes

The site of Shinoridate (志苔館跡, Shinoridate ato) in Hakodate, Hokkaidō, Japan, is that once occupied by the Shinori Fort or Fortified Residence (as denoted by the tate or date ending). This was the easternmost of the so-called "Twelve Forts of Southern Hokkaidō", built on the Oshima Peninsula by the Wajin from the fourteenth century.[1][2] The site was designated a National Historic Site in 1934 and is one of the Japan Castle Foundation's Continued Top 100 Japanese Castles.[3][4]

Shinori fort[edit]

Of the "Twelve Forts of Southern Hokkaidō" (道南十二館), Mobetsu and Hanazawa alone held out against Koshamain's forces in 1457; clockwise from Shinori at the east end: Usukeshi (宇須岸館), Mobetsu (茂別館), Nakano (中野館), Wakimoto (脇本館), Innai (穏内館), Oyobe (覃部館), Ōdate (大館), Nebota (禰保田館), Haraguchi (原口館), Hiishi (比石館), and Hanazawa (花沢館)[5][6]

Shinoridate is located some 9 kilometres (5.6 mi) to the east of the center of Hakodate, along a stretch of coast with many good natural harbours. A short distance inland from Shinori Fishing Port, with the mouth of the Shinori River to the west, the gently sloping site overlooks the Tsugaru Strait and Shimokita Peninsula, with views also towards Mount Hakodate.[1][7]

The earthworks rise to a height of 4 to 4.5 metres (13 to 15 ft) on the north side and 1 to 1.5 metres (3.3 to 4.9 ft) to the south and are interrupted by an opening on both the east and the west sides. The moat is 5 to 10 metres (16 to 33 ft) wide on the north and west sides and up to 3.5 metres (11 ft) deep and is crossed by two earth bridges, that to the west particularly well-preserved.[1][7]

First laid out around the end of the fourteenth century, Shinoridate features in the Matsumae Domainal history Shinra no Kiroku, which tells of it being sacked by the Ainu in Chōroku 1 (1457), during Koshamain's War, and again falling to the Ainu in Eishō 9 (1512), after which its occupants, the house of Kobayashi (小林氏), became subject to the Matsumae clan.[1][note 1]

The Hakodate City Board of Education conducted excavations and surveys of the enclosure and surrounding area between 1983 and 1985, uncovering the remains of a number of buildings, palisades, a well, artefacts made of bronze, iron, stone, and wood, celadons and white porcelain from southern China, as well as domestic Suzu, Echizen, and Seto ware.[1][7][8]

Three different intercolumnar measurements were used in the construction of the buildings, the style of the well is that found in Heian-kyō in the late Kamakura period, while many of the ceramics are typical of the early fifteenth century.[7]

Accordingly, three main phases have been identified: the end of the fourteenth or early-fifteenth century; mid-fifteenth century; and sixteenth century or later. With the archaeological evidence pushing back the origins of the fort at least half a century before Koshamain, its construction can no longer be understood as an immediate response to the contingencies of 1457, and other explanations are required.[7]

Shinori hoard[edit]

Suzu ware vessel with part of the hoard (courtesy of Hakodate City); the other two vessels were from the Echizen kilns[7]

In July 1968, during widening work on the prefectural road (now National Route 278) that runs past the fort, a Nanbokuchō-period (C14) coin hoard was unearthed some 40 metres (130 ft) inland from the mouth of the Shinori River, at a location 3 metres (9.8 ft) above sea level. This is the largest hoard found to date in Japan in terms of the number of coins it contains.[7]

The three large vessels excavated weighed, together with their contents, 1.6 tonnes (1.6 long tons; 1.8 short tons). Ninety-three different types of coin have been identified: a handful in total of early Japanese coinage of the Asuka, Nara and early Heian periods, late tenth-century Vietnamese coinage of the Đinh and Early Lê dynasties, and late eleventh-century Goryeo coinage from Korea; the bulk comprising Chinese coinage, primarily of the Song dynasty, issues ranging in date from 4 Zhu Ban Liang minted in the fifth year of Emperor Wen of Han (175 BC) to Hongwu Tongbao from the first year of the Hongwu Emperor, founder of the Ming dynasty (1368).[7] The 374,435 coins from this hoard now at the Hakodate City Museum have been designated an Important Cultural Property.[9]

A 1999 study of 275 Japanese hoards, totalling 3,530,000 coins, found that the Chinese copper coins used in Japan in the Middle Ages were brought over in the largest number in the thirteenth century, were used primarily in commerce or for paying soldiers, and were buried largely for reasons of security, although there were also instances of ritual or votive deposits.[10][11] The dating of the Shinori hoard precludes its burial as a response to Koshamain's War; instead it may relate to trade, the local Shinori or Kaga kombu featuring alongside Ezo salmon in the Nanboku-chō period text Teikin Ōrai (庭訓往来). Produce from the area would have been traded along the Hokuriku coast to reach the markets of Kyōto and Ōsaka.[7]

Coins in the Shinori hoard
Type Date/First minted Quantity Origin
1 4 Zhu Ban Liang 175 BC (Buntei 5) 7 Han
2 Wu Zhu 115 BC (Gentei 2) 39 Han
3 Huo Quan 14 (Tenpō 1) 6 Xin
4 Kaiyuan Tongbao 621 30,816 Tang
5 Qian Yuan Zhong Bao 758 (Kengen 1) 1,422 Tang
6 Wadōkaichin 708 1 Asuka period
7 Mannen Tsūhō 760 1 Nara period
8 Jinkō Kaihō 765 4 Nara period
9 Ryūhei Eihō 796 2 Heian period
10 Fuju Shinpō 818 4 Heian period
11 Jōwa Shōhō 835 1 Heian period
12 Jōgan Eihō 870 1 Heian period
13 Engi Tsuhō 907 1 Heian period
14 Tong Zheng Yuan Bao 915 8 Former Shu
15 Tian Han Yuan Bao 917 17 Former Shu
16 Guang Tian Yuan Bao 918 17 Former Shu
17 Qian De Yuan Bao 919 79 Former Shu
18 Xian Kang Yuan Bao 925 19 Former Shu
19 Da Tang Tong Bao 944 2 Southern Tang
20 Han Yuan Tong Bao 948 15 Later Han
21 Zhou Yuan Tong Bao 955 87 Later Zhou
22 Tang Guo Tong Bao 959 393 Southern Tang
23 Song Yuan Tong Bao 960 1,288 Northern Song
24 Thái Bình Hưng Bảo 970 3 Đinh dynasty
25 Tai Ping Tong Bao 976 3,512 Northern Song
26 Thiên Phúc Trấn Bảo 984 19 Early Lê
27 Chun Hua Yuan Bao 990 3,258 Northern Song
28 Zhi Dao Yuan Bao 995 5,851 Northern Song
29 Xian Ping Yuan Bao 998 6,400 Northern Song
30 Jing De Yuan Bao 1004 8,139 Northern Song
31 Xiang Fu Yuan Bao 1008 9,322 Northern Song
32 Xiang Fu Tong Bao 1008 5,384 Northern Song
33 Tian Xi Tong Bao 1017 7,943 Northern Song
34 Tian Sheng Yuan Bao 1023 17,924 Northern Song
35 Ming Dao Yuan Bao 1032 1,813 Northern Song
36 Jing You Yuan Bao 1034 5,384 Northern Song
37 Huang Song Tong Bao 1039 47,031 Northern Song
38 Qing Li Zhong Bao 1045 1 Northern Song
39 Qing Ning Tong Bao 1055 1 Liao
40 Zhi He Yuan Bao 1054 4,452 Northern Song
41 Zhi He Tong Bao 1054 1,416 Northern Song
42 Jia You Yuan Bao 1056 4,478 Northern Song
43 Jia You Tong Bao 1056 8,729 Northern Song
44 Zhi Ping Yuan Bao 1064 7,002 Northern Song
45 Zhi Ping Tong Bao 1064 1,154 Northern Song
46 Xian Yong Tong Bao 1065 2 Liao
47 Xi Ning Yuan Bao 1068 34,897 Northern Song
48 Xi Ning Zhong Bao 1071 12 Northern Song
49 Da Kang Tong Bao 1075 2 Liao
50 Yuan Feng Tong Bao 1078 43,009 Northern Song
51 Yuan You Tong Bao 1086 33,904 Northern Song
52 Shao Sheng Yuan Bao 1094 14,917 Northern Song
53 Shao Sheng Tong Bao 1094 2 Northern Song
54 Dong Guk Tong Bo 1097 7 Goryeo
55 Dong Guk Chung Bo 1097 2 Goryeo
56 Hae Dong Tong Bo 1097 18 Goryeo
57 Hae Dong Jung Bo 1097 1 Goryeo
58 Sam Han Tong Bo 1097 1 Goryeo
59 Sam Han Jung Bo 1097 2 Goryeo
60 Yuan Fu Tong Bao 1098 5,721 Northern Song
61 Sheng Song Yuan Bao 1101 14,333 Northern Song
62 Chong Ning Tong Bao 1102 3 Northern Song
63 Chong Ning Zhong Bao 1102 2 Northern Song
64 Da Guan Tong Bao 1107 4,230 Northern Song
65 Zheng He Tong Bao 1111 15,206 Northern Song
66 Xuan He Yuan Bao 1119 1 Northern Song
67 Xuan He Tong Bao 1119 1,412 Northern Song
68 Jianyan Tong Bao 1127 88 Southern Song
69 Shaoxing Yuan Bao 1131 149 Southern Song
70 Shaoxing Tong Bao 1131 16 Southern Song
71 Zheng Long Yuan Bao 1158 479 Jin
72 Tian Sheng Yuan Bao 1158 3 Western Xia
73 Longxing Yuan Bao 1163 1 Southern Song
74 Qiandao Yuan Bao 1165 2 Southern Song
75 Chunxi Yuan Bao 1174 2,366 Southern Song
76 Da Ding Tong Bao 1178 22 Jin
77 Shaoxi Yuan Bao 1190 774 Southern Song
78 Qingyuan Tong Bao 1195 938 Southern Song
79 Jiatai Tong Bao 1201 549 Southern Song
80 Kaixi Tong Bao 1205 356 Southern Song
81 Jiading Tong Bao 1208 1,735 Southern Song
82 Dasong Yuan Bao 1225 84 Southern Song
83 Shaoding Tong Bao 1228 614 Southern Song
84 Duanping Yuan Bao 1234 49 Southern Song
85 Jiaxi Tong Bao 1237 161 Southern Song
86 Chunyou Yuan Bao 1241 530 Southern Song
87 Huangsong Yuan Bao 1253 285 Southern Song
88 Kaiqing Tong Bao 1259 20 Southern Song
89 Jingding Yuan Bao 1260 475 Southern Song
90 Xianchun Yuan Bao 1265 583 Southern Song
91 Zhi Da Tong Bao 1310 110 Yuan
92 Zhi Zheng Tong Bao 1341 3 Yuan
93 Hongwu Tongbao 1368 12 Ming
12,901 Unidentified
Total 374,435

See also[edit]


  1. ^ 「長禄元年五月十四日夷狄蜂起来而、攻撃志濃里之舘主小林太郎左衛門尉良景…殺狄之酋長胡奢魔允」("On the fourteenth day of the fifth month of the first year of the Chōroku era (1457), a barbarian uprising occurred, and in an attack on Shinori Fort, its lord Kobayashi Tarō Saemon-no-jō Yoshikage...was killed, the barbarian tribal leader being Koshamain") 「永正九年四月十六日宇須岸志濃利與倉前三舘所攻落夷賊…小林太郎左衛門尉良景之子彌太郎良定」("On the sixteenth day of the fourth month of the ninth year of the Eishō era (1512), the three forts of Usukeshi, Shinori, and Yokuramae fell in an attack by barbarian bandits and...Kobayashi Tarō Saemon-no-jō Yoshikage's son Yatarō Yoshisada was killed")


  1. ^ a b c d e 史跡志苔館跡 [Shinoridate Site - Historic Site] (in Japanese). Hakodate City. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  2. ^ 史跡志苔館跡 [Historic Site: Shinoridate] (in Japanese). MLIT Hokkaido District Transport Bureau. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  3. ^ 志苔館跡 [Site of Shinoridate] (in Japanese). Agency for Cultural Affairs. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  4. ^ 続日本100名城 [Continued Top 100 Japanese Castles] (in Japanese). Japan Castle Foundation. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  5. ^ Itō Norihiko (伊東則彦); Hamada Tsuyoshi (經田剛) (1 August 2019). 上ノ国物語1 -コシャマインの戦い- [Tales of Kaminokuni (1): Koshamain's War]. Hokkaido Medical Journal (in Japanese). Hokkaido Medical Association (1211).
  6. ^ Batten, Bruce Loyd (2003). To the Ends of Japan: Premodern Frontiers, Boundaries, and Interactions. University of Hawai'i Press. p. 110. ISBN 978-0824824471.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i Tahara Yoshinobu (田原良信) (31 March 2004). 再考志海苔古銭と志苔館 [Rethinking the Shinori Hoard and Shinori Fortified Residence] (PDF). Research Bulletin of the Hakodate City Museum (in Japanese). Hakodate City Museum (14): 9–20.
  8. ^ 史跡志苔館跡 [Historic Site: Shinoridate] (in Japanese). Nara National Research Institute for Cultural Properties. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  9. ^ 北海道志海苔中世遺構出土銭 [Coins excavated from the medieval remains of Shinori, Hokkaidō] (in Japanese). Agency for Cultural Affairs. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  10. ^ Suzuki Kimio (鈴木公雄) (1999). 出土銭貨の研究 [The dynamics of money circulation in 14th to 18th Century Japan]. Tokyo Daigaku Shuppan Kai. ISBN 978-4130260688.
  11. ^ Pearson, Richard J (2016). "Japanese medieval trading towns: Sakai and Tosaminato" (PDF). Japanese Journal of Archaeology. Japanese Archaeological Association (3): 89–116.

External links[edit]