|Zenkoujishiki amida sanzon 善光寺式阿弥陀三尊|
|KEY WORD : art history / sculptures|
|Images of the *Amida 阿弥陀 trinity made in the style of the Amida trinity at Zenkouji 善光寺 in Nagano prefecture. This triad is the principal devotional image at Zenkouji and is said to have originated in India. It then traveled to China, and was brought to Japan by Hata no Kose dayuu 秦巨勢大夫 in 552. It is a triad of Amida with the attendants *Kannon 観音 and *Seishi 勢至 rendered in gilt bronze. The main figure and the two attendants are placed against the same nimbus (see *ikkou sanzon 一光三尊). The standing Amida image is shown with the right hand raised and the left hand lowered in the position known as touken-in 刀剣印 or tou-in 刀印, where only the forefinger and middle finger are extended. The attendant figures wear ornamental crowns and have their hands folded across their chest. In the Fujiwara and Kamakura periods, Pure Land Buddhism joudokyou 浄土教, spread in Japan and faith in the Amida became very widespread. A large number of imitations of the Zenkousishiki amida sanzon were made, initially in the Kantou 関東 and Touhoku 東北 regions and later throughout the country. Many of these statues were made of bronze, and some were gold plated. There are also rare examples of wooden or iron statues. Although the size of the images varied, the central figure was most frequently around 30cm in height. The Zenkousishiki amida sanzon in Zenkouji, Yamanashi prefecture is the oldest signed example in Japan, bearing the date, Kenkyuu 建久 7 (1196).|
|*sanzonbutsu 三尊仏, *chuuson 中尊, *kyouji 脇侍, *in 印.|
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