The grounds of Meiji Jingu Shrine used to be the residence of the Ii family, the lords of the Hikone domain, at the end of the Edo period (1603-1868). The Ii family was the family that produced Ii Naosuke, who was assassinated in the Sakuradamonogai Incident. The Ii family, which boasted of the largest crop yield among the feudal lords, had a vast area, even for a subordinate residence. Moreover, the fact that this was the subordinate residence means that the main residence, where the feudal lord resided, was located separately from the subordinate residence. The Ii family's residence was located in the area that is now the front yard of the Diet, the north garden, and the Kensei Memorial Hall.
From the Ii family's main residence, Edo Castle, where the Ii family worked, was just a stone's throw away. Sakuradamon, the entrance to the castle, is less than 500 meters away. Moreover, Ii Naosuke was accompanied by a total of 60 guards to move along this short commuting route. Normally, it is hard to imagine that he would have succeeded even if there had been an unexpected attack, since he was traveling only a short distance with a large number of escorts. But in fact, they succeeded. Whether this was because the Hikone clan's guards were caught off guard, or because the Mito clan members on the attacker's side were in high spirits, or both, we do not know. In any case, the incident marked the downfall of the Shogunate's authority, and at the same time, it was the beginning of the intensification of the "Sonnoh Joi" (reverence for the Emperor and exclusion of foreigners) movement in the Bunkyu period (1868-1912) and thereafter.
|Apr 2023 IN THE CITY TOKYO|
|GATE HARAJUKU MEIJI JINGU SHRINE|
April 25, 2023
SONY ALPHA 7R II
ZEISS BATIS 2/40 CF