Friday, May 10, 2013

Inside Shoto-en


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Shoto-en is a collection of historic buildings and gardens located in Sannose on Shimokamigari Island in the Inland Sea off Hiroshima. I posted some pictures of the outside here.

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Most of the displays are concerned with the many delegations of official emissaries from Korea on their way to Edo who stopped here and were entertained by the local daimyo. A mock up of the lavish banquets given are pretty impressive, and it is said that if the delegations came more often than they did ( 11 delegations stayed on Sannose during the Edo Period) the cost of their entertainment to the daimyo would have resulted in bankruptcy.

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There is a big display of Chinese porcelain, gifts from the visiting delegates, which also included the Dutch traders from Dejima in Nagasaki, which is probably where the gifts of lamps came from.

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The buildings are in different styles and with different interiors, so there is actually quite a lot to see for the entrance fee of 800 yen. Unless your visit happens top coincide with one of the infrequent bus tours you will also have the place to yourself.

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Of course no self-respecting historical museum in Japan can not display agricultural paraphenalia :)

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