Tokugawa Yoshimune is considered one of the greatest shoguns of Edo Bakufu. He initiated financial reforms that most likely made writing the rest of this series on Tokugawa shogun graves infinitely easier. Just as they re-used existing sites, I can re-use existing blogs. Awwwww yeah. Continue reading Yutoku-in・the Grave of Tokugawa Yoshimune
The second greatest funerary complex at Zojo-ji was Bunshoin, the mortuary temple of the 6th shogun, Tokugawa Ienobu.
Almost nothing remains of the site, but I hope to walk you through it today as best as I can. Continue reading Bunsho-in・the Grave of Tokugawa Ienobu
Last time, I wrote about the 4th shogun, Tokugawa Ietsuna. Today let’s look at the grave of his younger brother, the much more famous Tokugawa Tsunayoshi – the so-called Dog Shogun. If you’ve been to Ueno Park, you may have seen the gate to his tomb. It’s much better preserved that Ietsuna’s and a little more centrally located… kinda. Continue reading Joken-in・the Grave of Tokugawa Tsunayoshi
Most people think that all that remains of Tokugawa Ietsuna’s grave is a small gate in Ueno Park.
They are wrong.
And I’ve got the pictures to prove it. Continue reading Gen’yu-in・the Grave of Tokugawa Ietsuna
Are you ready for this article? Maybe not.
Tokugawa Iemitsu is famous for building Tōshōgū in Nikkō, but he built another masterpiece in Edo for his father. Daitokuin was considered the most beautiful funerary complex at Zōjō-ji. Unfortunately, almost none of it is standing today. So, I’ll attempt to resurrect Daitokuin today. Continue reading Daitoku-in・the Grave of Tokugawa Hidetada
Not much to say on the topic of Toshogu (and to some degree, Taiyuin) because so much has already been said. The real meat of this series will be in the shrines that we can’t see today. Continue reading Tosho-gu・the Grave of Tokugawa Ieyasu
Today I’m starting a 16 part series describing the graves of all 15 Tokugawa shoguns. If you’re planning to travel to Japan, and Tokyo in particular, you might want to consider visiting these spots. Unfortunately, there isn’t much left to see in Tokyo, but what is remaining is intriguing! Continue reading Tokugawa Funerary Temples
Kasuga no Tsubone, or Lady Kasuga, was a certified card carrying bad ass of the Muromachi Period and Edo Period. She instituted and managed the shogun’s harem. She had an income equal to that of a feudal lord. She pulled the strings of shogunal succession that guaranteed the ascendancy of Tokugawa Iemitsu, the first peace-time Tokugawa shogun. Tokyo remembers her with a street and train station. lol
Why is Kasuga Street called Kasuga Street? Continue reading What does Kasuga mean?
Just wanted to share 4 more great books about Japanese History that I love! Have an awesome day! Continue reading 4 More Bad Ass Books on Japanese History
Teleportation technology wasn’t yet available for the Shogun in Tokugawa Japan, so instead they used an extensive system of roads. The 5 most important roads led to Edo. They were called the Go-kaido. Awwwwwwwww yeah. Continue reading Go-kaidō – The 5 Highways of Old Japan
So you’re planning a trip to Japan. You have a smartphone or PC and you’re worried about only having wifi in your hotel room. Flets will give you access to their hotspots around Tokyo (and some other cities). It might not be perfect, but it’s better than nothing. And it’s FREE! Continue reading Free Wifi for Travelers in Japan
Today I just want to recommend a few books that help me write my blog. I love these books. I hope you do too! Continue reading Some Bad Ass Books on Japanese History
Going to Japan for the first time? There are a lot of manners and commonsensical behaviors that people do here and just take for granted that everyone knows. But the fact is that if you’re visiting Japan for the first time, you probably don’t know most (or maybe any) of the local customs. If I had a 1 yen coin for every time I saw a foreigner doing something “wrong,” I’d have a fuckload of 1 yen coins. They get in the way, mess up everyone’s routine, or just do things that will annoy everyone around them. None of these things is the end of the … Continue reading Japanese Manners (part 1)
The history of Japanese toilets starts with crude holes in the ground but now Japanese toilets lead the way in excitement and innovation! Continue reading Japanese Toilets!!!
Japanese draft beer and bubbles… WTF? Continue reading Japan Gives the Worst Head
This came to my attention via Japan Probe, and as a lover of Japanese history, it immediately caught my attention. The Japan of the past that we might see in movies and read about in books is quickly disappearing. Here in Tokyo it sometimes seems like only the shrines and temples have survived the earthquakes, fires, carpet bombings and construction booms over the centuries. The Tokyo of today would be utterly unrecognizable to an inhabitant of the Edo Period (we’re talking as late as 1868, folks). Kyoto was luckily spared most of destruction of the American bombings during WWII and … Continue reading Tour of an Edo Period House in Kyoto
OK. This is gonna be loooooooooooooooooooooong. I promise to try my best to be concise, but I’m also trying to include as much as possible for people interested in life in Japan. Japanese New Year is the most important holiday of the year. It’s a big family holiday, much like Christmas, but a bit more solemn. All the companies and schools shut down and people return to their hometowns for a week and kick it old school with the fam. (I included a list New Year’s related vocab at the bottom if you want to see the kanji for any … Continue reading Japanese New Year
If you or any of your friends are thinking of coming to Tōkyō on a budget, I can recommend a new, clean, super cheap guesthouse! At about $30 a night, it beats any regular hotel in the Tōkyō area. This is the same price as a “capsule hotel” which is no way to travel. Plus, you’ll be staying in one of the coolest, most historical areas still left in the city where you can get in touch with “Old Japan.” when a new business opens in japan, other local businesses and supporters send signs and gifts like this My friend … Continue reading Need a Cheap Place to Stay in Tokyo?