Enoshima, see below

Kamakura 鎌倉

***** Location: Japan
***** Season: Non-seasonal Topic
***** Category: Humanity

- click for enlargement -
The Bronze Statue of Dai-Boutsu, 1863. by Felice Beato


CLICK for more Japanese photosCLICK for more English photos and links

Surrounded by mountains on three sides and the open water of Sagami Bay on the fourth, Kamakura is a natural fortress. During the Heian period it was the chief city of the Kantō region, and from the 12th through 14th centuries the Minamoto shoguns ruled Japan from here under what is known as the
Kamakura Shogunate (Kamakura Jidai, 鎌倉時代 1185–1333).

Kamakura is now mainly known for its temples and shrines. Kōtoku-in, with the monumental outdoor bronze statue of Amida Buddha, the most famous of these. A 15th Century tsunami destroyed the temple that once housed the Great Buddha, but the statue survived and has remained outdoors ever since.

Magnificent Zen temples like Kencho-ji and Engaku-ji; the Tokei-ji (a nunnery that was a refuge for women who wanted to divorce their husbands); the Tsurugaoka Hachiman Shrine; the Hase-dera, an ancient Kannon temple; the graves of Minamoto no Yoritomo and Hōjō Masako; and the Kamakura-gu where Prince Morinaga was executed, top the list of Kamakura's most famous historical and religious sites.

Kamakura has a beach which, in combination with the temples and the proximity to Tokyo, makes it a popular tourist destination. The city is well-provided with restaurants and other tourist-oriented amenities.
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


Fujiwara no Kamatari (藤原釜足)

. The origins of the name Kamakura
The SICKLE (kama 鎌) and Haiku   


Religious people love nature. Kamakuraites love flowers. No matter when you visit Kamakura, flowers are always with you. Many temples are famous for certain flowers.
(See haiku below.)
There is much to be said about the atmosphere of Kamakura and its attraction to haiku poets. I will try to add more later.

Gabi Greve


Saint Nichiren 日蓮 and Kamakura

Kamakura Kaido 鎌倉街道
Kamakura Kaidō, Kamakura Highway or Highways during the Kamakura Period


. Famous Places and Powerspots of Edo 江戸 .

Kanda Kamakurachoo 神田鎌倉町
"Kamakura Village" in Kanda, Chiyoda ward
Kamakuragashi 鎌倉河岸 ー 鎌倉川岸
Kamakura riverbank, Kamakura waterfront

At the beginning of the Edo period, when the town was just re-structured by Tokugawa Ieyasu, a lot of construction wood and stones came via the Kamakura region (Sagami no kuni 相模国), with workers coming from Kamakura to heop unloaded at Kamakuragashi. The tradespeople built their homes nearby, soon called Kamakura village. In a map of 1657, it is mentioned as 「かまくら丁」.
Ieyasu also had the Koora ke 甲良家 Kora family from Omi settle here . The head of the Kora family was a master carpenter (daitooryoo 大棟梁) and helped build Edo castle, Senso-Ji and other famous temples, even the 日光東照宮 Nikko Toshogu shrine.

There are some legends alive in the village.
御宿稲荷神社 Mishuku Inari Jinja
浦安稲荷神社 Urayasu Inari Jinja
出世不動尊 Shusse Fudo
昔、Shioiri 潮入りの葦原 (Ashihara)だったこのあたりで、漁業を営む人々が篤(あつ)い信仰を寄せていた「浦安稲荷神社」も、かつてはこの町にありました。この祠は、天保(てんぽう)十四年(1843年)に遷座(せんざ)され、現在は神田明神の境内にあります。
now 内神田二丁目1番
- source : Chiyoda Ward Tokyo -

One famous store in Kanda Kamakura Village was the sake store
Toshimaya 豊島屋 (としまや)
It begun selling some snacks and a cup of sake to the workers in the evening, thus being the first "Izakaya 居酒屋" pub in Edo.
Soon other yatai 屋台 food and drink stalls came up in many parts of Edo.

Since 1596 in Edo
Toshimaya, the oldest sake store in Tokyo, originated when its founder, 豊島屋十右衛門 Toshimaya Juemon, opened a sake store and tavern in 1596 at Kamakura Waterfront in central Edo (modern day Tokyo). At that time, large-scale renovation work was being carried out on Edo Castle, so people flocked to Kamakura Waterfront, and Toshimaya is said to have prospered enormously.

Furthermore, when Juemon began brewing shirozake (white sake), its reputation spread throughout Edo. Shirozake is a sweet rice liqueur that was popular with women at the time. Indeed, it was from this time that the Japanese custom of offering shirozake on Girls’ Day, the annual event during which people pray for girls’ healthy growth, is said to have begun. As a result, Toshimaya’s shirozake is cited in many novels and traditional Japanese Kabuki plays. Even today, Toshimaya preserves the traditional recipes and makes shirozake once a year.

Nowadays, our sake brewery is located in Higashi-Murayama City in west Tokyo, where sake, shirozake and mirin (sweet cooking sake) are brewed. Our sake, Kinkon (Golden Wedding Anniversary in English), has been awarded numerous gold prizes at the Annual Japan Sake Awards, and is used as the sacred sake at the famous Meiji Jingu Shrine as well as Kanda Myojin Shrine. Kinkon is skillfully produced by our brewers and, as one of Tokyo’s representative sakes, it brings value to many of our customers.
- source : toshimaya.co.jp -

. Edo - Kanda 神田 Kanda district .



Kami-Kumagaya Station (上熊谷駅 Kami-Kumagaya-eki) is a railway station on the Chichibu Main Line in Kumagaya, Saitama, Japan, operated by the private railway operator Chichibu Railway.
Kami-Kumagawa Station opened on 1 April 1933 as Kamakura-machi Station (鎌倉町駅).
It was renamed Kami-Kumagaya from 1 July 1933.
- - - More in the WIKIPEDIA !


. Takahama Kyoshi and Kamakura   

Kamakura no furuki yadoya no matsukazari

these pine decorations
at the old inns
of Kamakura

Kyoshi, 1949

. WKD : kadomatsu 門松 "pine at the entrance".


Kamakura Beach and Enoden Train ... more photos

Susumsu Takiguchi about Hoshino Tsubaki sensei

Kamakura wa nami no oto yori ake yasushi

in Kamakura
dawn breaks from the sound of waves,
getting earlier and earlier

Kamakura is where Kyoshi lived and worked most of his life after leaving his hometown, Matsuyama. Tsubaki and her son, Takashi, have founded a haiku
museum there in honor of Kyoshi and of Tsubaki's mother, Tatsuko. The museum
has become a center of haiku studies and composition. As the haiku indicates, residents of this coastal town are always conscious of the sea.
Kyoshi founded a new haiku magazine, Tamamo, and gave it to Tatsuko to run.
Now it is run by Tsubaki and Takashi.

More about: Hoshino Tsubaki and
Takahama Kyoshi and Kamakura


Kamakura Haiku by Kyoshi









Haiku by Kyoshi about Kamakura

CLICK for more photos

His Grave at Jufukuji 寿福寺, Kamakura


Tsukioka Yoshitoshi - 東海道由比ヶ浜

Yuigahama 由比ガ浜 Yuigahama Beach
"beach at Yui"
. . . CLICK here for Photos !

mijikayo ya ashiato asaki Yuigahama

short night -
shallow footprints
at Yuigahama

Yosa Buson

. Short Night and HAIKU  


- - - - - Enoshima 江ノ島

Benzaiten, the goddess of music and entertainment, is enshrined on the island.
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !

Enoshima ya kasa sashikakeshi natsu sakana

Enoshima island !
all use a parasol -
fish in summer

Takebe Soochoo 建部巣兆
1761-1814, painter and poet, Takebe Socho

. FISH in summer - SAIJIKI

. Benten, Benzaiten 弁天 弁財天

Enoshima - by Katsushika Hokusai

Travelers at Enoshima - by Kitagawa Utamaro

Worldwide use

CLICK for original Link

Obama revisits Kamakura's Great Buddha
November 15, 2010

Things found on the way

Kamakura Sayumi, a Haiku Poet
Sayumi Kamakura 鎌倉佐弓


Issa in Kamakura

hamaguri ya zai-kamakura no kari kamome

O clams
meet the geese and gulls
of Greater Kamakura!

harusame ya kamakura suzume nan to naku

in spring rain
Kamakura's sparrow's...
how they sing!

kamakura ya mukashi donata no chiyo tsubaki

who planted this camellia
in olden times?

kamakura ya inu ni mo hitotsu o-nan mochi

in Kamakura
one for the dog...
sacred rice cakes

This haiku refers to a celebration held on the 12th day of Ninth Month. Rice cakes in bean jam are offered to Nichiren, the founder of one of Japan's major Buddhist sects. These offerings commemorate a time when an old woman fed Nichiren when he was in exile.

shigururu ya imasu kamakura kari kamome

winter rain falls
on Kamakura's residents...
geeses, gulls

Kamakura ya ima wa kagashi no yashiki mori

these days scarecrows
are the gatekeepers

Kobayashi Issa / Tr. David Lanoue

CLICK for original LINK

the prosperity is the past
and the best harvest this year

© Haiga and Renku : Nakamura Sakuo


Kamakura ya Zen to haiku ni ume kaori

plum blossoms
adorning Zen and haiku
at Kamakura asile

Masaaki Oka

Plum-view haiku walk to Tokeiji Temple (woman-escaping-to-Temple) in Kamakura.

More Kamakura Haiku, 2005
Moderator: Catherine Urquhart


Gabi Greve:
I lived in Kamakura from 1977 till 1995.
I was member of a local haiku group for many years.

Kamakura ya kankookyaku no natsu no jin

Oh Kamakura !
the "Battle of Summer"
of the tourists

"FACTS : Osaka natsu no jin" (the Summer battle of Osaka)

Every year, there were more noisy visitors coming to town to visit temples and shrines, with roads crowded by smelly tourist buses, the beach filled with people (and waste and leftovers next morning)... after about 15 years it was time for us to move on to the quiet mountains of Okayama !

a different temple
for each season <>
flowers of Kamakura

Flower Calendar in Kamakura

Related words

. Asaina Kiridoshi Pass 朝夷奈切通し .
and Asahina Saburo Yoshihide - 朝比奈三郎義秀

Hoshino Tsubaki 星野 椿
Granddaughter of Takahama Kyoshi

. Tsurugaoka Hachimangu
鶴岡八幡宮 and Hachiman Festivals

. Kamakurabori 鎌倉彫り
Kamakura Laquerware and Daruma san

Amulets from temples in Kamakura :
. Folk Toys from Kanagawa .


my giant old friend
has taken a final fall ...
spring storm

. The Old Gingko Tree at Hachimangu
uprooted in March, 2010





anonymous said...






   鎌倉や木枯二号と歩いており     前田吐実男


出典:『鎌倉抄』 (伊東 類)
(21/ 8/ 1)


Gabi Greve - Basho archives said...

Kamakura o ikite ideken hatsu-gatsuo

you made it
past Kamakura alive -
first Katsuo bonito

Written in 元禄5年, Basho age 49
Basho was well aware of the customs of Edo, where the first Katsuo was an expensive delicacy unknown in his homeland, Iga.
The bonito from Kamakura was then carried to Edo as a present to the Shogun.

Haiku about place names by
Matsuo Basho

Gabi Greve said...

iza Kamakura

The phrase "Iza Kamakura いざ鎌倉," literally, "in an emergency" or
"when it comes to the crunch, (I will rush to Kamakura as fast as possible) . . .

the story and a sweet . . .

Gabi Greve - Facebook said...

Kamakura Daibutsu
text by Lafcadio Hearn

You do not see the Daibutsu as you enter the grounds of his long-vanished temple and proceed along a paved path across stretches of lawn. Great trees hide him, but very suddenly, at a turn, he comes into full view and you jerk! No matter how many photographs of the colossus you may have already seen, this first vision of the reality of it is astonishing. Then you imagine that you are already too near, although the image is at least a hundred yards away. As for me, I retire at once, thirty or forty yards back, to get a better view and the jinrikisha man runs after me, laughing and gesturing, thinking that I imagine the image is alive and am afraid of it.

But, even if the shape was alive, no one could be afraid of it. The gentleness, the dreamy passionlessness of those features, the immense repose of the whole figure, are full of beauty and charm. Contrary to all expectation, the nearer you get to the giant Buddha, the greater this charm becomes. You look up into the solemnly beautiful face, into the half-closed eyes that seem to watch you through their eyelids of bronze as gently as those of a child, and you feel that the image typifies all that is tender and calm in the Soul of the East. Yet, you also feel that only Japanese thought could have crated it. Its beauty, its dignity, its perfect repose, reflects the higher life of the nation that imagined it; and although, without doubt, some Indian model inspired it, as the treatment of the hair and various symbolic marks reveal, the art is Japanese.

Gabi Greve said...

A castle in Kamakura?
Yes, there was one. Tamatsuna Castle, built some 500 years ago by Hoyo Soun

鎌倉に城?そう、鎌倉に一つだけ城がありました。500年前に北条早雲が築いた「玉縄城」です。1512年、北条早雲(伊勢宗瑞)は三浦道寸を追い、相模を席巻し、鎌倉に入り、 鶴岡八幡宮に参拝して荒廃しきっていた鎌倉と八幡宮の再興を誓って、一首を奉納した。 :

Anonymous said...

Additional information relating to the Kamakura castle.
[隠れ郷土史] と話は「九つ井」のある田谷の隣町に飛びます。長尾台町という地です。 越後長男家の発祥の地でもある。そこの御霊神社内に「長尾氏居館跡」の案内板があり、そのちょっと南に大船の玉縄城の出城だった「長尾砦跡」の案内板がある。

Gabi Greve said...

小説由井ヶ浜 Santō kyōzan "Shōsetsu yuigahama,"
山東京山 Santo Kyozan Novel called Yuigahama

Read the entire illustrated book here - Keio University 慶應義塾大学