naka-no-kuchi 中の口
KEY WORD : architecture / general terms
1 A semi-formal entrance to Honmaru Goten 本丸御殿, the main palace in Edojou 江戸城. It was situated at the east end of one of the administrative office areas, in a position intermediate between the main formal entry *genkan 玄関 and the service entry *oodoguchi 大戸口. It gave access to a 13 bay long earth-floored corridor on both sides of which were the offices of government departments including the commission for shrines and temples, jisha bugyou 寺社奉行, and the construction department, fushin bugyou 普請奉行. It was an entry often used by ordinary visitors on business and once inside there were facilities for them to rest and prepare themselves for their appointment.

2 In the residences of the warrior class *buke-zukuri 武家造 during the Edo period, an entry intermediate in status between the main formal entry *genkan 玄関 and the service entry *oodoguchi 大戸口. This type of entrance increased in popularity during the latter half of the 17c. In the case of a large residence, such as that of a daimyou 大名, the naka-no-kuchi (unlike the genkan, which was reserved for the head of the household and privileged guests) was used by senior household staff and administrative officials involved in the government of the fief. It gave access to the domestic and service quarters of the a residence.

3 An entrance found in *hirairi 平入 farmhouses nouka 農家 in Touhoku 東北 region (Aomori and Yamagata prefectures) of the Edo period. The naka-no-kuchi gave access to a room adjacent to the earth-floored area *doma 土間. In some traditional Edo period farmhouse in Touhoku, an entrance constructed with the front facade of the hirairi dwelling giving access to the room adjacent to the earth-floored area.


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