Kumamoto Castle

Kumamoto Castle

Infobox Military Structure
name=Kumamoto Castle
_ja. 熊本城
location=Kumamoto, Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan

caption=Donjon Tower
type=Azuchi-Momoyama castle
built=1469-1487; major expansions 1591-1610
builder=Ideta clan (original); Kato clan (1591) Hosokawa clan (1632)
materials=Wood, stone, plaster, tile
condition=Largely intact, restoration work begun in 1960
controlledby=Ideta clan (1469-1496),Kanokogi clan (1496-1550),Jou clan (1550-1587),Sassa clan (1587-1588),Kato clan (1588-1632),Hosokawa clan (1632-1871),Japan (1871-present)

Kumamoto Castle (熊本城; -jō) is a castle in Kumamoto, Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan that has been opened to the public for tours. A large, and in its day, an extremely well fortified Japanese castle. The donjon (castle central keep) is a concrete reconstruction built in 1960, but several ancillary wooden buildings remain of the original castle. The castle was besieged during the Satsuma Rebellion, and was sacked and burned after a 53-day siege.

In nearby San-no-Maru Park is the Hosokawa Gyobu-tei, the former residence of Hosokawa clan, the Higo daimyo. This traditional wooden mansion has a fine Japanese garden located in its grounds.

The signature curved stone walls known as musha-gaeshi, as well as wooden overhangs were designed to prevent foes from penetrating the castle. Rock falls were also used as deterrents.

Kumamoto Castle recently celebrated its 400th anniversary. On Dec 7, 2007 a large scale renovation of the Lord`s Inner Palace was completed. A public ceremony for the restoration was held April 20, 2008.

Kumamoto Castle is considered one of the three premiere castles in Japan, along with Nagoya and Osaka.


*cite book | title=Castles in Japan| last=Schmorleitz| first=Morton S.| date=1974| pages= pg. 114-116| publisher=Charles E. Tuttle Co.| location=Tokyo| id=ISBN 0-8084-1102-4
*cite book | title=Japanese Castles| last=Motoo| first=Hinago| date=1986| pages= 200 pages| publisher=Kodansha| location=Tokyo| id=ISBN 0-87011-766-1

External links

* [http://www.manyou-kumamoto.jp/castle/ Kumamoto Castle official homepage (in Japanese)]
* [http://www.kumin.ne.jp/dmogrady/kyushu/Kumamoto.html Castles of Kyushu (in English)]

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