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The Gardens of the Manshu-in Shoin!

6 years ago87 views

Located in northern Kyoto, this temple is reputable for its 'shoin' architectural style, typical of the early Edo period. Its garden is designed as a boat on the water, and is also well known for its beautiful style.

Manshu-in (曼殊院), also known as the Manshuin Monzeki, is a Tendai temple located near the Shugakuin Imperial Villa at Sakyō-ku, Ichijo-ji, Takenouchi-cho, in northeast Kyoto, Japan.
The temple was founded by Dengyo Daishi in the 8th century. It was then located near Mount Hiei and known as Tobibo, but renamed Manshuin in 1108 or 1109. In the early Edo period the temple moved to its current site. Today the temple is notable both for its buildings and a fine garden - the gardens of the Manshu-in shoin are a nationally designated Place of Scenic Beauty.

Manshuin has a great number of beautifully painted sliding doors (襖 fusuma) and panels, with each room having a different theme. These rooms are: the Tiger room, the Peacock room, the Waterfall room, the Bamboo room, the Snow room, the Fuji room, the Twilight room and the Round Hearth room. The entry building contains a Tiger Room with images said to have been painted by Kano Eitoku 狩野 永徳 (1543–1590), Bamboo Room with Edo wood-block prints, and Peacock Room with pictures by Ganku 岸駒 (1749/56–1839). The main temple hall (Great Shoin) dates from the early Edo period, and is now listed as an Important Cultural Property. It contains a Waterfall Room with slides by Kanō Tanyū 狩野探幽 (1602–1674), and Snowy Scenes Room with screen pictures by the same artist and shelves much like those in the Katsura Imperial Villa. The smaller hall (Small Shoin) is also an important culture property; it contains the Mount Fuji Room (pictures by Kanō Tanyū on the sliding doors); Twilight Room with royal throne and more paintings by Kano; and a tea room.

The temple's major garden is in the Karesansui (枯山水) style, and now designated as an eminent scenery; it contains a notable Pinus pentaphylla tree, now about 400 years old, set within an "island" on a stream of white sand. The inner garden is quite small, and features a stone basin and old well.

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