Evening Bell at Mt. San'en
Evening Bell at Mt. San'en from the series "Eight Views of the Shiba District in the Capital City"
Edo Period (1600-1868)
9 13/16 x 14 3/16 in. (25 x 36.1 cm)
(1797 - 1858)
Full Title:Evening Bell at Mt. San'en from the series "Eight Views of the Shiba District in the Capital City"
Medium and Support:
Gift of Dr. James B. Austin
Location: Not currently on view
"Evening Bell at Mt. San'en" shows as its "distant temple" the Sangedatsumon (Gate of Freedom from the Three Misperceptions), the main gate (sanmon) of Zôjôji, the burial temple of the Tokugawa shoguns. This gate, originally built in 1622, is one of the few monuments of Edo still extant today; the rest of this magnificent temple disappeared, along with much of Tokyo, in the Allied bombing raids on the city during WWII. This print shows people walking at dusk in the "Field of One Hundred Pines" that stretched in front of the temple's main gate. The characters "mountain ties" used to write the word san'en in the title of the print are properly written with the homophonic characters "three ties," which in the Jôdo sect of Buddhism refers to the three duties of its main devotional rite, one of which is zôjô-en or the duty of reciting the name of Amida Buddha—the source of the name of Zôjôji temple shown here.