nara period

Hakone Shrine Torii- Misty Morning.  Hakone Shrine was founded sometime in the Nara period, and has been in its present location since 757 AD. It was an important place of worship in Japan’s medieval period for samurai as well as for commoners traveling along the old Tōkaidō Road during the Edo period. Terxt and photography by Rekishi no Tabi on Flickr

Tokyo, Japan - Hanami street in Tokyo around 100 years ago, either end of April or beginning of May, showing a lot of cherry blossom trees and old leaves on the ground. The practice of hanami itself is many centuries old: The custom is said to have started during the Nara period from 710 when it was ume blossoms that people admired in the beginning. Still today, millions of Japanese celebrate hanami in the parks of Tokyo and overall Japan.

In other “hello I woke up at 4 today” news, Sukesou reports that the Making Of book reveals:

  • Hoshido is meant to convey an impression of a great Japanese continent that might be a little reminiscent of China. That’s why they chose the aesthetic of the highly Chinese-influenced Nara period.
  • The Invisible Kingdom/Touma is meant to give the image of being placed between the East and the West, and hence is supposed to give “the feeling of the exotic culture at their meeting point” like India or Afghanistan. (PS: Don’t shoot the messenger, just what the book says.) Hence the movements of Aqua’s battle model is supposed to invoke the way the Indian goddesses move.
  • The FE14 divine weapons correspond to the sun, moon, earth, and heavens. “Sun” was the Raihanotou (Ryouma’s thunder sword; that’s not an official reading of the kanji btw) which doesn’t quite match up exactly. Brynhildr (as you might guess) matches up with Earth.
  • For some reason, there’s a lot of detail on the various changes to Roy’s design.
  • There are a bunch of deets on FE9’s development hell. Apparently Begnion was originally called Babylonia, and Ike’s dad was a lorded knight of the noble house of Belsys/Persis/whatever. (It’s the title they ultimately gave Sephiran.) When Ike was 12, his dad was accused of treason and died in an assault on his castle. His mother went missing, and also there’s stuff like Tibarn (whose fiancee is Leanne) and Soanvalke(=Stefan) being profoundly loyal to Begnion, and Mist was the female heroine, and Titania was the leader of a group of mercenaries (DO WANT), and yeah. Proto-Tellius was pretty different.
  • There’s a bunch of stuff about the ecology and literary culture of each of the FE10 countries. Do want…
  • Also, jfen has recently acquired the slang “salty” within the last year, meaning roughly the same thing that it does here–to treat the fans of a celebrity in a cold manner. Fascinating!

From the division
Of the heaven and the earth,
Instinct with godhead,
Lofty and noble there stood,
Rising in Suruga,
The towering cone of Fuji:
When I gaze afar
Across distant plains of heaven
The wandering sun
With all its beams is blotted out,
The shining moon
And all its light is lost to view;
The white clouds fear
To drift across the mountain face,
And in all seasons
Snow still falls upon the peak:
I shall tell the tale,
I shall talk for all my days
About Fuji’s towering cone.

Yamabe no Akahito

Translation: Edwin Cranston

Image:  Dreamy Fujisan by Chaluntorn Preeyasombat - via: Ville Koivunen pinterest          

From Wiki: “Yamabe no Akahito (山部 赤人 or 山邊 赤人) (fl. 724–736) was a poet of the Nara period in Japan. The Man'yōshū, an ancient anthology, contains 13 chōka ("long poems”) and 37 tanka (“short poems”) of his. Many of his poems were composed during journeys with Emperor Shōmu between 724 and 736. Yamabe is regarded as one of the kami of poetry, and is called Waka Nisei along with Kakinomoto no Hitomaro. He is noted as one of the Thirty-six Poetry Immortals.“(via: wiki)

Gigaku mask, Japan. Nara period (710 -794).  Gigaku masks are now the only remains of a drama that reached its peak in Japan VIII th century.  This theater mask Gigaku Karura is a divine bird in Indian mythology that was introduced in the Japanese Buddhist pantheon as one of the eight guardian deities of the religion. Guimet Museum


Gigaku Mask Karura (Garuda). Nara period, 8th century, Japan.  Wood (paulownia) with polychrome. Todaiji temple, formerly in the collection of Hara Sankei (Tomitaro).  Miho Museum, Japan

Hakone Shrine Lantern. Hakone Shrine was founded sometime in the Nara period, and has been in its present location since 757 AD. It was an important place of worship in Japan’s medieval period for samurai as well as for travelers during the Edo period.  Kanagawa, Japan.  Text and photography by Rekishi no Tabi on Flick