JAPAN PICS
Hirakata City, Osaka
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Table of Contents

  Makino Park (q)
  Katano-jinjya Shrine (ДW_)
  Makino (q)
  Uyama (FR)
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Hirakata City, Osaka

2005-2012

1. General Information on Hirakata City

  Hirakata City is located in the eastern outskirts of Osaka.  Hirakata is bounded by River Yodo to the west, and the Ikoma Mountains to the east.  The area has been populated since ancient times known as Katano-ga-hara, Kawachi-no-kuni, which was the "Uta-makura" (place of poetical association) for many poets including Narihira Ariwara and Prince Muneyoshi [Munenaga], and thrived as the hunting grounds of nobles and aristocrats during the Heian period (as described by Toshinari [Shunzei] Fujiwara, Kinhira Fujiwara, and later Yoshiakira Ashikaga) and as a post town along the "Tokai-do," the main road from Osaka to Kyoto during the Edo Period (1807-1867).
  The main road between Osaka and Osaka was called "Osaka-do" by people in Kyo[-to] and "Kyo-do" by people in Osaka.  The "Tokai-do " was widely known to have had 53 post towns between Edo (Tokyo) and Kyoto, but precisely 57 post towns in all, counting Fushimi, Yodo and Hirakata between Kyoto and Osaka.  The old Tokai-do Road was renovated as National Road No.1.
  Hirakata was chartered by Osaka Prefecture as its 12th city on August 1,1947.  Hirakata's population of 40,000 at that time has increased to 407,270 (Feburary 1, 2012).  Now the city has an area of 65.08 sq. km.  The population density is 6,270 per sq. km.


2. Aterui and More

  Aterui the "Tamo-no-kimi" ("Lord of Tamo, [Hada, Mizusawa Ward, Oshu City, Iwate]") (?-802) was the greatest chief of "Emishi" people of Isawa, the ancient Tohoku District, in the northern part of the main island of Japan.   He lived in Isawa [now Mizusawa, Oshu City, Iwate] and fought with Tamuramaro Sakanoue (758-811), the legendary Shogun leading the powerful army of "Yamato-Chotei," the ancient Japanese Government based in Nara and later in Kyoto at the turn of the ninth century (789-802).  By that time the northern Japan now being called as "Kita-Tohoku" District was not included in "Japan: It was "Emishi" or "Ezo" (both use the same Chinese characters which literally mean "barbarian") Country free from the Japanese control.  So Aterui and his tribes were not "Yamato" or the ancient "Japanese."   Or in a strict sense, there were not regarded as the "Japanese citizens" by the ancient Japanese government.  At that time, the government tried to territorialize all over the Japanese Isles (not yet including Hokkaido).

  The government under the reign of the ambitious Emperor Kanmu (r.781-806) sent the army to the Tohoku District many times.  But Aterui's platoon (about 500 soldiers) succeeded to beat Shogun Kosami Kino's troops of more than 50,000 Yamato soldiers in 789, which greatly surprised the Yamato-Chotei.  They felt confounded dread of Aterui.  Then Emperor Kanmu anointed Tamuramaro Sakanoue as the vice Shogun in 794 and he was promoted Shogun in 801 to fight with Aterui and his Chief General Staff More the "Iwagu-no-kimi" (lit. "Lord of Rock Armor"?; probably from Motai, Maesawa).   The details of their battle was unknown but "Emishi" was defeated in the battle as the fact that Yamato's new government house "Isawa-jo Castle" began to construct in 802.  Hoping peace for the "Emishi" people, Aterui and More threw down their arms on April 15, 802 and were captured by Tamuramaro Sakanoue who safeguarded them to the Chotei in Kyoto.  As the historical documents tell, Tamuramaro Sakanoue tried to persuade his superiors and Emperor Kanmu to save Aterui and More's lives to work for ruling the former "Emishi" Country, but they never agreed with him: Aterui and More were sent to Sugiyama, Kawachi-no-kuni (now Hirakata City, Osaka) to be beheaded on August 13, 802.
  The reason why Aterui and More were taken here to be executed is under examination. According to Momoko Okada, the Gon-Negi (sub Shinto priest) of Katano-jinjya Shrine, who has been researching Arerui and More, there are two speculations:

  1) Sakanoue took to this place the two "Emishi" who were not allowed to enter the capital.  Sakanoue was a descendent from a Korean (Paekche) family and that there stood Kudara-O-jinjya Shrine (lit. King of Paekche Shrine) next to Katano-jinjya Shrine, whose member "Shuntetsu Kudara-O" also rendered a distinguished service to conquer the "Emishi" Country with Sakanoue.  It might have been all he could do for Aterui and More who believed friendship with Sakanoue till their end.  Before they reached here, however, they received the decree to put them to death on the way at Uyama.  The site of Kudara-O-jinjya Shrine is maintained by Shinto Priest Fujitsu now.
  2) Katano-jinjya Shrine is located southwest, that is, the back demon's gate of the capital.  In Japan, people traditionally abominate the northeast and the southwest directions as they believe that those are the directions of demons' going in and out.  Emperor Kanmu, who familiarized himself with the Chinese principles of Yin and Yang, probably tried to protect the capital against evils by burying the heads of Aterui and More who were considered to be equal to demons.  Thus it can make a reason why they buried the two heads within the precinct of the shrine.
  
   After Sakanoue's death, Katano-jinjya Shrine has been privately holding an annual memorial service for Aterui and More over 1,200 years.

  For further information of Aterui,
    1. go to the "Aterui the Great Hero of Emishi" page.
    2. go to the "About" page.
    3. go to the "Mizusawa" page.
    4. go to the "Hiraizumi" page.
    5. go to the "Kyoto East" page.



  
   Go to: Uchu Osaka Makinozaka (in Japanese)
  
  
  On March 4, 2007, supporters and sympathizers could erect the long-awaited monument to the memory of Aterui and More with the corporation of local Shinto shrines, the municipal offices of Hirakata City and Oshu City and local boards of education, etc.


 

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Makino Park
     Makino Park (q; 2-15 Makinozaka, Hirakata City), also known as Saka-koen (), was made about 30 years ago by Hirakata City.  Before that, it was in the precinct of Katano-jinjya Shrine.  Known as a beauty spot of cherry blossoms in early April.
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(Wednesday 16 February) "Miya-yama" (lit. the "Shrine Mound": now Makino Park, Hirakata City, Osaka), where The "Kubi-duka," the mound where Aterui's and More's heads were reportedly buried.  The legend tells that Aterui the great hero of Emishi and his chief general staff More were beheaded by the Chotei-gun (the ancient Kyoto army) on August 13, 802 (in the lunar calendar) in Uyama (or Ueyama/Sugiyama), Katano-ga-hara, Kawachi-no-kuni in spite of his rival and Chotei general Tamuramaro Sakanoue's appeal for mercy.
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(Wednesday 16 February) Makino Park, Hirakata City
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(Wednesday 16 February) The original place of The "Kubi-zuka" (), the mound where Aterui's and More's heads were reportedly buried.  Makino Park
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(Wednesday 16 February) The original place of The "Kubi-zuka," the mound where Aterui's and More's heads were reportedly buried.  Makino Park.
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(Wednesday 16 February) The "Kubi-zuka," the mound where Aterui's and More's heads were reportedly buried.  Makino Park.  According to Momoko Okada of Katano-jinjya Shrine, there were originally two gravestones (one big stone for Aterui and one small stone probably for More): In fact, two grave stones could be seen in the picture taken about 30 years ago.
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(Wednesday 16 February) The "Kubi-zuka," the mound where Aterui's and More's heads were reportedly buried.  Makino Park
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(Sunday 4 March) The "Kubi-zuka," the mound where Aterui's and More's heads were reportedly buried.  Makino Park
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(Sunday 4 March) The "Kubi-zuka," the mound where Aterui's and More's heads were reportedly buried.  Makino Park
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(Sunday 4 March) The Shinto ritual for the erection of the monument to the memory of Aterui and More
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(Sunday 4 March) The Shinto ritual for the erection of the monument to the memory of Aterui and More: Performed by Hiroyuki Okada the chief priest of Katano-jinjya Shrine
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(Sunday 4 March) The Shinto ritual for the erection of the monument to the memory of Aterui and More: Performed by Hiroyuki Okada the chief priest of Katano-jinjya Shrine
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(Sunday 4 March) Reception tent of the inauguration [the ceremony for the completion] for the monument
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(Sunday 4 March) Performance by Hirakata Dai-San Junior High School Brass Band
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(Sunday 4 March) Inauguration for the monument
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(Sunday 4 March) Inauguration for the monument: Still veiled.
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(Sunday 4 March) Inauguration for the monument: The moment to unveil it!
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(Sunday 4 March) Inauguration for the monument: Finally unveiled!
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(Sunday 4 March) Speech by Seihan Mori (X , 1940-) the chief abbot of Otowa-san Kiyomizu-dera Temple, Kyoto.  As for Kiyomizu-dera Temple, see the Kyoto East page.
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(Sunday 4 March) Speech by Hiroshi Nakatsuka (i G, 1956-) the mayor of Hirakata City (1995-present)
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(Sunday 4 March) Speech by Norio Iwai ( j) the deputy mayor of Oshu City, Iwate
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(Sunday 4 March) Group photo in front of the monument
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(Sunday 4 March) The monument unveiled!
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(Sunday 4 March) the back of the monument.  It briefly explains who are Aterui and More, and why the monument dedicated to them stands here wit the data of the erection.
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(Sunday 4 March) The list of generous donors for the monument.
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(Sunday 4 March) I have just found my name on the above list!
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(Sunday 4 March) the briefing session [party] for the completion held at Saka-kaikan () abutting Makino Park and katano-jinjya Shrine
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(Sunday 4 March) Speech by Hiroyuki Okada the chief priest of Katano-jinjya Shrine at the briefing session.  His late father and grand father are known to have been eager to persuade local people to build the monument for Aterui and More.
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(Sunday 4 March) Festival drumming performed by a local lady.  Fantastic indeed!
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(Sunday 4 March) They are playing the intro of the new song "Aterui Koshu-ondo" (AeC]B: a Ko-shu chorus song dedicated to Aterui) with the tune of Ko-shu Bon Festival Song.
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(Sunday 4 March) Genzaburo Omi (ߍ] OY) and his band performs the new song "Aterui Koshu-ondo" (AeC]B: a Ko-shu chorus song dedicated to Aterui) with the tune of Ko-shu Bon Festival Song.  This is the first performance of the song.
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(Sunday 4 March) Speech by Kin-ichi Abiko (F ) the editor in chief of Tankonichinichi-shimbun-sha (_]V), Oshu City.  He is also known as an actor specializing Aterui and once appeared on NHK TV a decade ago.
  
     
Katano-jinjya
     Katano-jinjya Shrine (ДW_), 2-21-15 Makinozaka, Hirakata City, was said to have found in the time of the 11th Emperor Suinin about 2,000 years ago by Sukune Nomi(-no), the 14th descendant of "Ame-no-Honi-no-Mikoto" (the founder of the Hoji clan, "Izumo-no-kuni" (now Shimane and Tottori).  Sukune defeated Kehaya Taima(-no) in the "Sumo" tournament (though I am not sure if it is the same as the modern "Sumo") and was awarded "Kawachi-no-kuni."  Thus he built this shrine worshipping Susano-Ono-Mikoto, the deity from which his family (the Hoji clan) is descended.
  Later in the middle of the Heian Period (794-1185) they also began to enshrine Michizane Sugawara (widely known as the Japanese saint of learning, 845-903) who died an unnatural death in "Dazai-fu," Fukuoka, which caused by the Fujiwara clan's exclusive political tactics: Sugawara was a descendant of the Hoji clan.  The "Hon-den" (the main hall) was magnificently reconstructed by Hideyori Toyotomi in 1602, because the shrine was located northeast (the "demon's gate") of Osaka-jo Castle where the Toyotomi clan lived.
  it also has been privately holding annual memorial service for Aterui and More with some local sympathizers in August since the ancient times.
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(Wednesday 16 February) Notice for the sale of the amulet of Aterui.  Katano-jinjya Shrine, Makinozaka, Hirakata City
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(Sunday 4 March) Gate to Katano-jinjya Shrine
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(Sunday 4 March) "Hai-den" (the Outer Oratory) of Katano-jinjya Shrine
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(Sunday 4 March) "Hai-den" (the Outer Oratory) of Katano-jinjya Shrine
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(Wednesday 16 February) Interior of "Hon-den" (Main Hall) of Katano-jinjya Shrine.  Courtesy of Katano-jinjya Shrine.
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(Wednesday 16 February) "Hai-den" (the Outer Oratory) of Katano-jinjya Shrine, Makinozaka, Hirakata City
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(Tuesday 20 March) "Hon-den" (Main Hall) of Katano-jinjya Shrine, which was built by Hideyori Toyotomi in 1602; the reconstruction was completed in November 2011.
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(Tuesday 20 March) "Hon-den" (Main Hall) of Katano-jinjya Shrine, which was built by Hideyori Toyotomi in 1602; the reconstruction was completed in November 2011.
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(Sunday 4 March) Katano-jinjya Shrine abut on Makino Park
  
     
Makino
     
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(Sunday 4 March) Karaoke Coffee Shop "Sakurazaka" where I had a quick lunch and coffee.  The shop lady is very friendly, and customers, too.  I enjoyed conversation with them very much.  It is located in the opposite side of Makino Park across the road.
  
     
Uyama
     Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi, Hirakata, located in the northeast of Katano-jinjya Shrine (7 minutes walk from the shrine), is said to be one of the candidate places where Aterui and More were executed in 802.
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(Thursday 16 February) Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi
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(Thursday 16 February) Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi
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(Thursday 16 February) Information board of Aterui and More, Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi: It suggests here as one of the speculated places of their execution.
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(Thursday 16 February) Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi
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(Thursday 16 February) Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi
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(Thursday 16 February) Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi
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(Thursday 16 February) Uyama-Higashi Park (Eastern Uyama Park), Uyama-Higashi-machi
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(Thursday 16 February) A bamboo-grove in Uyama-Higashi-machi: According to Momoko Okada of Katano-jinjya Shrine, it remained status quo until recently, although now it becomes a part of an apartment site.  Children were told long ago, "Do not play here! Do not approach here!" As a local old man remembers, it was said to be the place where samurai who suffered a defeat performed hara-kiri (committed disembowelment) a long time ago.  At the northeast corner of the grove there stood an echinus-shaped hilly mound with an old cherry tree on top.  Some scholars and researchers had thought that it was the place where Aterui and More were executed, although no clear proof had been founded by the excavation made by the Hirakata City Education Board.



        


Copyright (c) 2005-2012 Eishiro Ito.  All rights reserved.