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Kyuden Asako architecture

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The architecture of Kyuden Asako was determined by the necessity of modern warfare. The castle sat on a hilltop at Giryu province, later known as Yogen province, and it was built between 828 and 837 with the assistance of Kaiu Engineers.

Hilltop Edit

An older castle, White Phoenix Castle, had been built before. Its structures and other defensive elements were integrated in the enhanced castle. [1]

Modern castle Edit

Modern warfare should include protection against the magical elements, including wide moats, thick, fireproof walls and system that permitted shugenja to move about freely to defend a castle from attackers on any side. [1]

Exterior Edit

These defensive works were laid out as a counterclockwise spiral design and outer walls were mazelike, under watch of marksmen in the yagura. The castle was centered on a hill that oversaw the surrounding terrain, with a main tower and three counterclockwise kuruwa surrounding the main towers and hill, integrated in the arced stonewalls, tile-roofed towers, and deep moats. [2]

  • Uchi Kuruwa, or Central Spiral: protected the daitenshukaku, the main castle tower.
  • Naka Kuruwa, or Second Round: served as fortifications during wartime. It included the residential quarters and the Asako Library.
  • Soto Kuruwa, or Third Round: it was encircled by a threefold moat. It included barracks, row houses, temples, training grounds, and mess halls.
  • Castle Walls: they were arced stonewalls, curved like a crescent moon, more resistant to both earthquakes and earth magic.
  • Moat: an enormous moat surrounded all three rings, fed by a small stream and stocked with carp, lotus, and water lilies. The inner moat was smaller and defended only a section.

Tenshu, the High Castle Edit

It was the final line of defense for Kyuden Asako and the home of the most important samurai, shugenja, and courtiers. Surrounding it were the honmaru, the ni-no-maru, the san-no-maru, officers offices, and the Daimyo residence. [3]

  • Four wells. One of them it was said that was haunted by the spirit of Okiku.
  • Kesho Tower.
  • Scholar's Gardens: they were mimic those that Shiba once gave to Lady Asako, very beautiful, with bonsai, a grove of golden bamboo, and a small stream meanders which fed two small pools.
  • Tower of the Henshin.
  • Hakakiri Maru, or Execution Ground: was a wideopen space and a small building which held the comdemned.
  • Stables, Archery Grounds, Samurai Barracks, Shugenja Quarters, and an Armory, among other facilities of the castle.
  • Heavenly Voice Temple
  • Morning Blessing Temple

Tenshukaku Edit

The castle towers were both defensive positions and political statements of one's status within the castle. The towers were three stories tall and made of wood, with arrow slits for defense. It was separated from the rest of the castle. [4]

  • Outer Tenshu, or Towers: there were more than 80 watchtowers, most of them stand alone. They were clustered heavily near the gates. Three Komon (a kind of secret path to hide a passageway) were set up in three places.
  • Watari Yagura, or Passage Turret: This long, low passage turret linked the daitenshukaku with the three other small towers.
  • Shotenshukaku, or Small Castle Towers: they were home for officials, as well as warehouses of arms, armor, and provisions. Each was three stories tall.

The castle interior consisted of the Daitenshukaku, or main castle tower, and the three Shotenshukaku, or small castle towers. The other tenshukaku or castle towers were the retreats or keeps of the fortification. In the time of the Mantis Invasion the castle was both a command tower and the final line of defense. [4]

Other buidlings of interest Edit

A shrine was constructed by Asako Hidehira during the reign of Hantei XXXIII, to commemorate a great and unexpected victory over the Lion Clan. [5]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Bloodspeakers, p. 91
  2. Bloodspeakers, p. 91-92
  3. Bloodspeakers, pp. 94-95
  4. 4.0 4.1 Bloodspeakers, p. 96
  5. Winter Court:Kyuden Asako, p. 7



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