|KEY WORD : architecture / gardens|
|Lit. cut stone bridge. A type of stone bridge *ishibashi 石橋, in which the stone is cut with a chisel into rectangular shapes and sanded to a smooth texture. Usually cut to produce a gentle curve, the resulting plank-like stone is used to bridge water or a dry stream *karenagare 枯流, in a dry landscape garden *karesansui 枯山水. The granite from Awa *awa-ishi 阿波石, Iyo iyo-ishi 伊予石, and the Kii peninsular *kishuu-ishi 紀州石, was highly prized for its good color. In some cases only one side of the stone was cut while the remainder was left in its natural state. While many kiriishibashi tended to be rather small, in Momoyama and early Edo period gardens such as those at Honganji 本願寺 and Katsura Rikyuu 桂離宮 in Kyoto, Shiga-in 滋賀院 in Shiga prefecture, and the Senshuukaku 千秋閣 in Tokushima prefecture, the cut-stone bridges were of massive proportions, often more than 2 meters long and more than 20 cm thick. The size of these stones were related to the huge stone slabs quarried for building castle walls.|
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