|KEY WORD : architecture / general terms|
| Lit. artificial mountain. Also kasansui 仮山水.
A general term referring to an artificial mountain modeled on a real or legendary
mountain. Usually built in a garden. Between one and five of these artificial
hills would be built, and sometimes these could be climbed to enjoy a view of
the garden. The idea of recreating mountains in a garden originated in China with
models of legendary peaks such at Mt. Pengla (Jp: *Houraisan
蓬莱山), and Mt. Kunlun (Jp: Konronsan 崑崙山), Daoist mountains of immortals, and Mt. Sumeru (Jp:
*Shumisen 須弥山), of the Buddhist
cosmology. Small mountain models were also common in Japan since the Nara period.
These could be made of ceramics, dried wood, or strangely-shaped stones, as seen
in miniature tray landscapes, bonkei 盆景 and bonseki 盆石. *Tsukiyama
築山, the modern term for hill garden, has generally replaced this more archaic
term, kasan .
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