Feb 11, 2012

54景 浅草川大川端宮戸川 View 54 Asakusa-river Okawa-bata Miyato-river


Hiroshige is on the Sumida-river near Ryogoku bridge, looking upstream.
The mountain in the distance is Mt. Tsukuba.


On the boats with the red and white decoration, the one in the forefront and the other on the right, are pilgrims to Mt. Oyama. 


Mt. Oyama (1252 m) is in Kanagawa prefecture, about 71 Km from Nihon-bashi. People were allowed to enter that sacred mountain only between June 27 and July 7.   In the mid-1700s, it became very popular among Edo people to make a group and go for this pilgrimage.  In fact, it was an exciting fun event for them. 


It was a custom to purify themselves in the water at the east bank of the Sumida-river before going for the pilgrimage. Then, they crossed the  river on a boat and started off.  On the boat, a man would blow a trumpet shell and they would all chant a ritual incantation in one voice.


This custom has long gone. 


It's hard to tell, but in the picture above, a river is flowing into the Sumida-river from the left.  That is the Kanda-river, and this is how it comes into the Sumida-river.


The bridge is called Yanagi-bashi.  Now, let's walk to the bridge. 


It is all green!  When I stood on the bridge, I saw ...


...many houseboats, called Yakatabune.  
Yakatabune is a boat that you can dine on Tenpura and other cuisine, while enjoying the ride on the Sumida-river.  I have dined on it once.  I enjoyed the view and also Tenpura right out of the hot oil!


One of  those Yakatabune houses, Komatsuya, stands right by the Yanagi-bridge. Looks very traditional...


Now, let's compare now and then.


You might think these two pictures look very different.  But if you compare them carefully, you can see that the way the Kanda-river  flows into the Sumida-river looks the same.  This is where Hiroshige stood 150 years ago.  I was quite satisfied. 

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キャラメル said...

I was born in Ibaraki. When I lived in there, I was looking Mt.Tukuba every day. Can we looking Mt.Tukuba from Tokyo today?

merrywitch said...

Dear キャラメルさん
I couldn't see Mt. Tsukuba that day. Maybe it was behind the bridges over Sumida-river. Probably from a high building, I think we still can see Mt. Tsukuba. Next time, I will look for it.