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Why is Ochanomizu called Ochanomizu?

In Japanese History on March 23, 2013 at 1:58 pm

御茶ノ水
O-cha no Mizu (Tea Water)

View From Ochanomiu Station Today

View from Ochanomizu Station Today…

I’m super busy this week, so I apologize about today’s update being so short.
I have to do an easy update or do nothing at all.

I’d rather do something than nothing.

So, today is 御茶ノ水 O-cha no Mizu (Tea Water).

Let’s look at the components of the name.

お茶 means “tea.” And in this case it means “tea ceremony” because the Japanese language is economical like that.

means “water.” And in this case it means “water” because water means water in every language.

Anyhoo… If you look across from the platform of O-cha no Mizu station, you can make out 高林寺 Kōrin-ji (Kōrin Temple). Apparently, there was a well from which some sweet, sweet water gushed forth.

kōrin-ji (kōrin temple)

kōrin-ji (kōrin temple) – the alleged source of that good watery goodness.

The first Tokugawa shōgun made many efforts to take advantage of local “sweet spots” to develop his court in Edo Castle and to give renown to his new capital. He soon ordered the water from the well of Kōrin-jin to be transported to Edo Castle for use in tea ceremony. The local people loved being favored by the Tokugawa family and area’s name stuck.

View of Ochanomizu in the Edo Period

View of Ochanomizu in the Edo Period

View of Ochanomizu in the Meiji Period

View of Ochanomizu in the Meiji Period

One more time

Ochanomizu Station Today… one more time… you know, for comparison and shit…

  1. […] wonderfully brief, witty, well-researched, and picture-filled posts on why Tokyo neighborhoods like Ochanomizu, Shibuya, and Nogizaka are called what they are. This is local history at its best, bringing alive […]

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