Thursday, December 22, 2022

Wakayama Castle

Wakayama Castle

Though not as well known as many, Wakayama Castle was considered very important by the Tokugawa Shogunate and in the early twentieth century was classified in the top three hilltop castles of japan

A smaller castle stood nearby, built by the Saiga Ikki, one of the many religious groups that maintained armed independence during the Warring States period. It was attacked first by Oda Nobunaga and then later by Toyotomi Hideyoshi.

Construction of Wakayama Castle began in 1585 by Hideyoshi's younger brother, Hidenaga.

It was greatly improved by the Asano Clan who had been given the domain following the Battle of Sekigahara. He built the three-storey keep connected by corridors to three Yagura turrets.

Control of the castle passed to Tokugawa Ieyasu's son, Yorinobu, and he expanded the castle further.

The keep was burnt down by a fire caused by a lightning strike in 1846, but was rebuilt a few years later. In 1871 the castle was abandoned, but unlike most castles in Japan at that time it  was not dismantled.

Most of the buildings were destroyed by American bombing during WWII but have been reconstructed since then.

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  1. Thank you for this and other posts on Wakayama. I hope to visit the prefecture next fall - just added the castle to the "must do" list.

    1. I will be posting more from Wakayama City and a lot more from further down the coast on the Kumano Kodo..... if there is anything specific you are interested in let me know...

    2. Looking forward to those posts. The Kumano Kodo and Koyasan were what originally drew my interest to the area. I'm always a fan of waterfalls, walking through woods, and opportunities to examine traditional building techniques.