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Konchiin Temple

Konchiin Temple

Konchiin Temple is a sub temple of Nanzenji Temple and was built in the early 15th century by shogun Ashikaga Yoshimochi. A few years later, between 1611 and 1632, the garden was built in preparation of the shogun's visit. It is fairly certain that the famous garden designer and tea master Kobori Enshu has built the garden. It is arranged in the shape of a crane and a tortoise facing each other. Tsuru-jima (crane island) on the right is composed of a stone for the cranes head and other stones for its wings, plus pine trees planted at the back. Kame-jima (tortoise island) consists of a stone for the tortoise’s head, and other stones for claws, legs and a tail, all of which are positioned around the stones representing the shell. In the foreground, white sand is spread to symbolize the sea. In Japan, the pairing of crane and tortoise is believed to be a symbol of good fortune. The garden was created as a prayer for eternal prosperity.