|@@@@@@@@@@The secrets of
134, Ri-bu, Hokkedani, Kojima town, Nanao
This temple is not open to the public, except for study groups, foreigners and by
This has been the rule since the Edo period(17C).
Fuku-hime* (Yositsura Cho's wife ), the daughter of Toshiie Maeda, Kiku-hime@and more
than 20 early Christians were sheltered here.
Go-hime and Ukon Takayama lived here, too.
There is a tower of Zeus in the back of the precinct. It has a cross and the names of Zeus
and St.Mary are carved on the cross.
In front of it, there is a stone lantern. You can find a " T cross "(cross of
St. Anthony) on the back of it.
(There are very few " T crosses " in Japan.)
The establishment person at this temple is " Baisetsu Maruyama ". He was a
famous master of the tea ceremony. He was a teacher of Jo-ou Takeno and Rikyu Sen. Baisetu
was invited to came to Nanao from Kyoto. He popularized the tea ceremony, Renga poetry and
the culture of Kyoto.
He lived in what is now Komaruyama park in
Nanao. It's name comes from " Maru-yama
", which means round hill.
When Toshiie Maeda tried to build a castle
on Komaruyama hill, he made " Yamano-tera
" a redoubt.
He moved parts of the Nanao castle to this temple.
The place names of " the lower temple mansion, " " the lookout, "
" the stopping " are left in this precinct.
Ukon lived in " the lower temple mansion.
This temple has many security contrivances.
In front of the gate, it had stop arrows
(the stone fence, the stone steps). Choju-ji
temple which had guarded the front (residence
of the warrior party ), and the reverse (Misogi
school ),which was a deep trench.
The gate and a nave had been built with diferent angles, so that bullets and arrows
couldn't hit directly.
Boards of the corridor can be removed at the nave, so that soldiers can move easier in
There are armored warrior hiding places in the ceiling. It has contrivances that can drop
Under the tatami mats, there are three loopholes to privide escape routes.
The room of Kikuhime is called " the chrysanthemum bower ", too.
It seems very simple from outside. But, inside of it is an excellent room with an alcove.
It is a graceful architecture which had been brought from the imperial villa in Kyoto. The
pillars are made of Kitayama cryptomerias. To prevent invasion by villains , the corridor
had set-up to emit the sound of a warbler, when people walked on the floors.
The tower of Zeus can be worshipped from the fenestella.
A statue of the priest is in the lacquer-coated miniature shrine, which has been called
" the pillow shrine of Hime ".
It has a secret mechanism. A cross has been hidden in this statue.
The letters from Toshiie Maeda have been kept as treasures of the temple.
The successor chief priests (Nichiju Gyokusen-in and so on ) came from the Maeda Family.
In front of the nave, there are two stone lanterns which are made of Tomuro stones.
It is proof of being one of the the higher temples of the area.
" Kaga will be dangerous if not executing Christians. " said a chief retainer,
had remonstrated on his lord and he performed harakiri (suicide). His memorial tower
stands next to the tower of Zeus.
Note * " Huku-hime " had been not mentioned in the pedigree figure of Maeda
Because of the circumstances of her mother was low, such as being a christian.
I suppose that it was a situation which couldn't be written about in those days..
( Koyo Egawa. Jul. 19 '96) (fixed by
Alex Hulanicki. Sep. 30,'98)