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Jun 30, 2013

松本城 Matsumoto Castle

日本にあるお城のうち、天守閣を備えたものは現在60余りあるそうで。
そのうち国宝に指定されているのは姫路城、彦根城、犬山城、松本城の4つ。
先月長野の松本城に行ってきました。

In Japan, we have over 60 castles with Tenshu (main tower) today.
Out of them, four are designated as National Treasure of Japan. They are Himeji, Hikone, Inuyama and Matsumoto.
Last month,  I visited one of them, Matsumoto Castle in Nagano.
Tenshu (main tower) and big moat

この天守が建てられたのは戦国時代の1590年代初頭。
とても美しい建物ですが、お殿様が住んでいたわけではありません。これは戦うためのお城です。

This castle was built in early 1590s.  It was the time when many provincial lords kept fighting each other for their territories.


It looks very beautiful, but no king nor princess lived there.
Tenshu was the building for fighting.

そのため内部は意外にシンプル。

So, it is very plain inside.

3階は窓もなく暗い部屋。

The third floor doesn't even have a window.

暗い3階。 It's dark.
階段は狭くて、急勾配。55度から61度の角度だそうです。)
最も急な階段は蹴上が40㎝もあって上るのも降りるのも大変。
転がり落ちそうでかなり怖かったです。
というわけで、バリアフリーからは程遠い建物です。

Their stairways are so steep and narrow. (They rise at a 55 to 61 degrees incline.)  
The steepest steps rise about 40 cm each.  
I was afraid I might tumble down.
 It's far from being barrier-free. 

なんとか最上階の6階まであがりました。

This is the top floor, the sixth floor.
すごい人でした。 It was very crowded.

天守からの眺めはぐるり360度。

You can enjoy the panoramic 360 degree view.



これなら敵の動きもよくわかったでしょうね。遠くの山は日本アルプスです。
They could spot their enemy easily.  You can see the snow-covered Japan Alps, too.

さて戦国時代が終わり、江戸時代になるとこの天守に二つの櫓(やぐら)が増築されました。そこには泰平の世の優雅な雰囲気が感じられます。

Later, in the Edo period, when peace was brought throughout Japan, two turrets were added to the structure.
They have a different, elegant feel.
花頭窓 window called Kato-mado

月見櫓の朱塗りの回縁 red-lacquered veranda around the Tsukimi-yagura turret

月見櫓は文字通り月見をするためのもの。
ここからはきれいに堀も見下ろせます。
というわけで、月見の際には3つの月を楽しめたと言われています。
空の月、堀に映る月、そして杯の中の月。
風流ですねぇ。 (^^)

Tsukimi-yagura turret, which overlooks the moat, was for moon viewing.
It is said people could admire three moons;
one in the sky, one in the moat, and one in your sake cup.
What a peaceful joy! (^^)

立派なお城です。足腰鍛えて、ぜひいらしてみてくださいね。 (^_-)

It's a wonderful castle.  But if you are going, you had better build up your physique first. (^_-)  


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10 comments:

Rurousha said...

My first reaction was, "Oh, look at that blue sky!" Then I noticed the castle. ^^

It's very beautiful, especially from the outside, with the mountains in the background. I like the simplicity of its interior, but I'd probably get a bit claustrophobic very soon. If I were a warrior, I'd prefer to sleep outside with the dogs and the horses. ;)

PS: 55 to 61 degrees?! Better not try to clamber down after that cup of sake ...

Merry Witch said...

Rurousha,
It was a beautiful sunny day and the castle looked very beautiful. (^^)

If I were a warrior, I would just hide somewhere very small. I would prefer to get claustrophobic rather than fighting.

cosmos said...

ほんとに美しいお城ですね。locationがまたすばらしい!NHKの朝ドラ「お陽さま」にも出てきましたが、信州の風景は憧れです。空の月、濠の月、酒盃の月・・・ふ~ん、沁みますねぇ。

Minoru Saito said...

おはようございます。とても綺麗な写真ですね。北アルプスを背景にしたお城は優美です。
 常念岳が写ってますね。
 最後の写真の左に見えるのが月見櫓ですね。
 先週の日曜日はスーパムーンでした。
 「月々に月見る月は多けれどツ月見る月はこの月の月」
 私はあと丸岡城に行くと現存天守のある城に全部行った事になるのですが、最後の一つがなかなか行けません。

Merry Witch said...

cosmosさま
松本の後、私たちは「お陽さま」の舞台、安曇野に行きました。道祖神、大きな木、清流。本当にきれいなところでしたよ。おそばもたくさん食べました。

できれば近いうちにアップしたいと思っています。

Merry Witch said...

Minoruさま
さすがですねぇ、お城もほとんどまわられたんですか?いやはや恐れ入ります。

常念岳もわかるなんてすごいです。
こちら山の名前、花の名前、鳥の名前、星や星座の名前、全然覚えられません。

Dru said...

Thank you for the fun post. I have been to many castles around Japan, but only 1 out of the 4 you mentioned. I have yet to visit Matsumoto, Hikone, and Inuyama.

I think I have a better chance of visiting Hikone, then Inuyama, and lastly Matsumoto. Looks beautiful but a bit out of the way. Who knows. You gave me an idea for another adventure. :)

By the way, my favourite castle so far was in Kochi. I loved it because I had the keep all to myself. I want to revisit Kochi again someday, but Matsuyama is calling me first. :D

Merry Witch said...

Dru,
Yes, Matsuyama first, please! (^O^)/

I have a suggestion. You rent a motor bike and go to Nagano. We drove to Matsumoto and it was about 4 hour drive from Saitama.
You can visit Matsumoto Castle, Azumino ( I haven't written about Azumino yet, but it's a beautiful place), and Zenko-ji temple in Nagano city.

I think you'll enjoy it!

Dru said...

Sounds like a good plan. I just need money to do it. :( I can do more trips if I travel by train rather than bike. But I'll consider it. It's on my 5 year travel plan for sure. :)

Merry Witch said...

Dru,
I hope your travel plan gets long and long, and you stay in Japan long and long. (^^)