gojuu-no-tou 五重塔
KEY WORD : architecture / buildings & structures
A five-storied pagoda usually 3 X 3 bays square with the central bays used as entrances. The corner bays most often contain a plastered wall with vertically mullioned windows *renjimado 連子窓. Pagodas of this type were constructed on a stone podium in the ancient period and on a wooden floor supported by posts placed on base stones in later periods. However, relatively few five-storied pagodas were built after the Heian period. The stories above the first contain only structural members. The central pillar *shinbashira 心柱, at Houryuuji 法隆寺 in Nara, the oldest extant, built late 7 to early 8c, was set over 2m below ground level. Later five-storied pagodas were set at ground level. The first story contains a 1-bay square inner sanctuary *naijin 内陣 marked by four so-called guardian pillars *shitenbashira 四天柱, a Buddhist altar with statues, and paintings that decorate the walls and structural members. In the Momoyama and Edo periods, a floor was laid on each story and the structural members were decorated. The central pillar was hung above the ceiling. Examples: Gojuu-no-tou, Houryuuji and Daigoji 醍醐寺 (952) in Kyoto, which was constructed up from ground level. Kaijuusenji 海住山寺 (1214) in Kyoto. Rurikouji 瑠璃光寺 (1443) in Yamaguchi prefecture. Proto-modern: Kyouougokokuji 教王護国寺 (Touji 東寺 ;1644) in Kyoto; and Kan'eiji 寛永寺 (1631) in Tokyo.

Koufukuji 興福寺 (Nara)

Houryuuji 法隆寺 (Nara)


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