Sakamoto Ryôma

April 26, 2010

by Ayumi Nakajima
Eng mit der Geschichte Kyôtos verbunden ist der berühmte Samurai Sakamoto Ryôma, dessen Geschichte in Japan zurzeit sehr populär ist. Viele Schauplätze seines Lebens lassen sich in Kyôto besichtigen.

Sakamoto Ryôma und Nakaoka Shintarô im Maruyama Park

Sakamoto Ryôma wurde in der Edo-Zeit, im Jahre 1836 in Tosa (Kôchi) geboren. Er wohnte mit seinen Eltern, seinem Bruder und seinen drei älteren Schwestern zusammen. Seine Mutter, die er sehr geliebt hatte, starb, als Ryôma 28 Jahre alt war.
Mit 12 Jahren begann er Kendo zu lernen und ging 5 Jahre darauf nach Edo (dem heutigen Tôkyô), um sein Können dort zu vertiefen.
Am 3. Juni 1853 wurde Ryôma dort Zeuge der Ankunft der „Schwarzen Schiffe“ Commander Perrys, welche die westliche Zivilisation nach Japan brachten. Der Anblick ließ ihn viel über die Zukunft Japans nachdenken.
Im Jahre 1862 begann Ryôma ein Dasein als Rônin, also als herrenloser Samurai. Ein Rônin zu sein bedeutete, dass man seine Heimatprovinz ohne Erlaubnis verlassen hatte. Dies wurde als schweres Verbrechen angesehen, doch in Tosa konnte er seine Träume nicht verwirklichen.

Schließlich traf Ryôma in Edo Katsu Kaishû, der nicht an Fremdenhass glaubte, sondern an die Öffnung des Landes zum Westen.
Ryôma wurde sein ergebener Schüler. Zum Dank erbat Kaishû bei Ryômas Lehnsherrn die Begnadigung seines Verbrechens.
Im Jahre 1864 lernte Ryôma in Kyôto seine spätere Frau Narasaki Ryô kennen, deren Namenskanji das selbe wie in Ryômas Namen war. Ein Jahr nach ihrer Heirat gründete Ryôma in Kyôto die erste moderne Übersee-Handelsfirma Japans, die “Kameyama-Shachû“.

Neben seinen geschäftlichen Tätigkeiten plante Ryôma ein provinzübergreifendes Bündnis zum Sturz des Shôguns. Aus diesem Grunde wurde er 1866 im Kyôtoer Stadteil Fushimi in einem Gasthaus namens „Teradaya“ von der shogunatstreuen Polizei gestellt. Seine Frau Ryô, die im Teradaya angestellt war, verhalf dem verletzten Ryôma zur Flucht. Diese Begebenheit ist als „Teradaya-Vorfall“ in die Geschichte Japans eingegangen. Ryôma und Ryô reisten nach Satsuma, bis es Ryôma wieder besser ging. Sie besuchten viele heiße Quellen und gelangten bis nach Kagoshima. Ihre Reise wurde als erste Hochzeitsreise in Japan bekannt. Das auf diese Weise berühmt gewordene „Teradaya“ kann auch heute noch besichtigt werden. (Abgesehen von den Neujahrsfeiertagen täglich geöffnet von 10.00 – 15.40, Eintritt 400 Yen, 6 Gehminuten ab Haltestelle Chûshojima, Buslinien 19 oder 81 bis „Kyôbashi“).

Während Ryôma mit seiner seit 1867 in „Kaientai“ umbenannten Firma wirtschaftlichen Erfolg hatte, sorgten seine politischen Verstrickungen dafür, dass das Shogunat dem Tenno die politische Macht zurückgeben musste. An dieser bedeutenden geschichtlichen Entwicklung war Ryôma maßgeblich beteiligt.

Das Haus von Ryômas ehemaliger Firma “Kaientai”

Das Firmenschild des heutigen Inhabers

Doch die Rache für seine Einflussnahme ließ nicht lange auf sich warten. Einen Monat später, am 15. November 1867 wurde Ryôma im Kyôtoer Kawaramachi-Viertel von einigen Männern überfallen, als er dort mit seinem Firmenpartner Nakaoka Shintarô in einem Zimmer der Sojahandlung „Ômiya“ saß. Ryôma, der an diesem Tag Geburtstag hatte, wurde getötet, sein Freund starb zwei Tage später an seinen Verletzungen. Diese Begebenheit wurde als „Ômiya-Vorfall“ bekannt. Die Identität seiner Mörder wurde nie festgestellt.
Ryôma wurde Seite an Seite mit Nakaoka Shintarô begraben. Sein Grab kann im Kyôto-gokoku-Schrein besichtigt werden.

Gedenkstein und Gedenktafel für den Ort, an dem sich das “Ômiya” befand.

Vergrößerte Gedenktafel

Das Andenken Ryômas, der stets an die Zukunft seines Landes und an seine eigene Vaterlandspflicht dachte, wird auch heute noch hoch geschätzt. In diesem Jahr bildet seine Geschichte das Thema einer sehr populären NHK Historienserie.

Ryômas Grab

Parque Maruyama

by Masataka Sato; Kiyomasa Taniguchi

O Parque Maruyama fica no distrito Higashiyama-ku de Kyoto.
Este parque é muito famoso pelas suas cerejeiras.

Atmosfera do parque


1. Turistas de várias nacionalidades visitam este parque nos dias úteis e feriados
2. Uma artista pratica dança na praça do parque.
3. Muitos pintores japoneses aqui encontram inspiração (uma cerejeira, uma lagoa, um prédio japonês )
4. Geralmente, um adivinho tenta adivinhar seu destino mas tem poucos clientes.
5. Nas bancas se vendem sorvetes (kakigori) e chá japonês.

Gion shidare zakura


primavera

Na primavera, as flores de cerejeira desabrocham e ficam em flor.
Esta cerejeira se chama shidarezakura.
Este parque é conhecido pelas cerejeira em flor (sakura) da primavera.

Muitas pessoas vêm aqui para contemplar a efêmera beleza da sakura.

Estátua de RYOMA SAKAMOTO e SHINTARO NAKAOKA


Estas estátuas representam heróis muito famosos no Japão: SAKAMOTO (direita) e NAKAOKA (esquerda).
SAKAMOTO introduziu no Japão o conceito comercial de sociedade anônima.
NAKAOKA também teve um papel importante na ação de SAKAMOTO.

Acesso

1.Mais ou menos 10 minutos a pé (da estação de Gion-shijo)
2.Mais ou menos 5 minutos a pé (do ponto de ônibus de Gion)
3. Aberto 24 horas por dia. Entrada grátis.

Arredores

Há muitos lugares turísticos à volta do Parque Maruyama:
1. YASAKA-JINJA (templo xintoísta YASAKA)
2. CHIONIN (um templo de grandes dimensões)

Sakamoto Ryoma

by Takashi Murachi; Yusuke Shimizu

Sakamoto Ryoma
& His Environs

Do you know the story of the young rebel samurai who died a hero, ambushed at an inn in Kyoto?

Of the many samurai who devoted themselves to helping our country before Japan was Westernized, there was one famous national samurai hero, named Sakamoto Ryoma. Most Japanese people know his name well, and how he made a great contribution to Japan’s rapid modernization.

In the 1860’s, Ryoma was keen to work all around Japan to reform the national political and economic system so that it would be similar to Western countries which had great power. To overthrow the bakufu (Japan’s ruling military government, or shogunate) he decided to try to bring together the two greatest anti-bakufu power clans, Satsuma and Choshu. As a result of Ryoma’s efforts, an alliance was finally formed in secret between Satsuma and Choshu, called the “Sacho Domei,” in 1866.

The next year, in 1867, he introduced an Eight-Point Program that was a guideline for the new government and cabinet system of Japan. The administrative system Japan uses at present was derived from his fundamental guideline.

Sakamoto Ryoma’s Chronological Story

Year

Age

Remarks

1836 1 January 3, born in central Tosa (Kochi Pref.) as the youngest son of a low-ranking samurai family.
1848 14 Began to practice kendo, the way of the sword, and later acquired excellent skills and confidence from his hard training.
1853 19 Completed his first swordsmanship training and received his certificate.
Sent to Edo (Tokyo) to improve his kendo skills in Chiba dojo, one of the most famous samurai sword technical schools, and became the strongest master in this school.
Saw the arrival of the Commander Perry’s U.S ships, visiting Edo Bay, Japan, demanding that Japan’s markets be opened to trade.
1854 20 Completed his Edo swordsmanship training and returned to Tosa.
Met Kawada Shoryu, who was very knowledgeable about Western ways.
1858 24 Returned to Edo to receive a swordsmanship license at the Chiba dojo and returned to Tosa.
1861 27 Joined the Tosa Loyalist Party (led by Takechi Zuizan) to overthrow the bakufu.
1862 28 Fled Tosa, where he left his home clan without official permission.
Tried to assassinate Katsu Kaishu, a high-ranking officer in the bakufu; however, he became a follower of Katsu.
1863 29 Katsu persuaded the shogun to establish a naval school in Kobe. Katsu placed Ryoma in charge of this school as head officer.
1864 30 Two strongest clans in Japan, Satsuma and Choshu, were attacked by the Western allied forces and realized the need of Western power.
1865 31 Established Kameyama-shachu in Nagasaki, Japan’s first trading company, assisted by Saigo.
1866 32 Satsuma-Choshu alliance worked out in secret, with Ryoma as a mediator between Saigo (Satsuma) and Katsura (Choshu).
Kameyama-shachu’s ship sank in a storm.
1867 33 Formulated the Eight-Point Program, a political guideline for the new government and cabinet.
Returned to Tosa to sell rifles to the Tosa clan and saw his own family for the first time in five years.
A written memorial of returning power to the throne, based on Ryoma’s Eight-Point Program, was presented to the bakufu.
Tokugawa Yoshinobu, the final shogun, accepted Ryouma’s plan to return his authorities to the emperor in Ocober.On November 15, assassinated at the Teradaya Inn in Kyoto, where he had been were staying.December 5, Meiji Restoration announced.
1868 ”Charter Oath” restated the main features of Ryoma’s Eight-Point Program.

Kyoto Ryozen Gokoku Shrine

Sakamoto Ryoma is enshrined in the Kyoto Ryosen Gokoku Shrine, located near Kodai-ji Temple in Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto. Walk east from Kodai-ji Temple. This shrine was established in 1868 as a place where many loyalists, those who served in the Tokugawa Shogunate, have been cremated. It contains the remains of many famous samurai warriors — not only Sakamoto Ryoma, but Nakaoka Shintaro, the soldiers of Shinsen-gumi, and so on, as well as other politicians during the Meiji era. Therefore, the path coming up to the main gate of the shrine is called The Road of Ishin.

Address 1 Ryozan-cho, Seikanji, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto 605-0861
Open 7:00am-17:00pm
Access From JR Kyoto, Keihan-Shijo, or Hankyu-Kawaramachi 20 mins. walking.

City Bus to Gion Nos. 80, 202, 206. Special service buses 206, 207, then 10 mins. on foot from Higashiyama Yasui bus stop

Keihan bus to Gion Nos. 83, 83A, 85, 85A , then 10 min walking from Higashiyama Yasui bus stopEntry fee250 yen. Groups (30+): 150 yen. Disabled people: 200 yen. Children under six years: admitted freeTelephone number075-561-7124 Free dial 0120-559038

 

 

Teradaya

 


Not just an old-style Japanese inn, Teradaya is where Ryoma was ambushed and killed at the age of 33 on the 10th of December,1867. Teradaya is a well-known place where many historical incidents took place at the end of the Edo era.

Ryoma only had a short life and died only a month prior to The Meiji Restoration, before he could see a dramatically changed Japan. It is believed that Ryoma was attacked by Shinsen-gumi but it’s still not clear who actually killed him.

Teradaya was a very popular inn for samurai at the end of the Edo era, and especially, for samurai of the Satsuma feudal clan, who often stayed there. On the second floor is the Ume no ma “Plum Room” where Ryoma Sakamoto often stayed.

You can still visit or even stay in this room to see the marks of swords and pistols in the pillars from when Ryoma was also attacked and wounded in the Teradaya Incident on the 23rd of January. You can also see the stairs next to the Plum Room which Oryo, Ryoma’s girlfriend, used in order to alert (but he survived) him to the attack (she rushed out of her bath and went upstairs, still naked). It is said that Ryoma and Oryo later had the first honeymoon in Japan, as he needed the time to treat his wounded hands with the help and permission of Saigo Takamori. You can see where Oryo used to use the bath tub.

If you want to stay in this dreamlike inn where you can soak in Ryoma’s life, you have to follow some rules. Check-in is 5:00 pm, and curfew is 8:00 pm; check-out is 9:00 am. The price for one night, per person: adult, ¥9,000; child, ¥6,400 (including breakfast, Japanese snacks, and sightseeing). Tel: 075-752-0227. Teradaya is open to visitors from all over the world! Why don’t you stay in this historical place? You might feel something in the Plum Room and even meet Ryoma while you’re dreaming.

Access: From JR Kyoto Station, transfer to JR Nara line, stopping at Tofukuji Station, and transfer to the Keihan train line, stopping at Nakashoshima Station, and finally walk 5 mins. from there.

It is said that low-ranking samurai warriors completely changed Japan from a hellish society to a modernized nation. Ryoma was the only person who thought about equality and freedom during that time. It is said that he never killed anyone and always had great ambitions and a clear future vision of Japan.

Nowadays, in order to remind us of Ryoma, his samurai story is introduced on TV, in newspapers and magazines and even in manga, and he is loved by a wide range of ages, from teenagers and senior citizens. This is why: Ryoma was also loved in this way even in his own time.