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Wooden Standing Statue of Zao Gongen (Enshrined at the Inner Sanctuary)

Unknown12th Century Late Heian Period

Mt. Mitoku Sanbutsu ji Temple

Mt. Mitoku Sanbutsu ji Temple

Nationally Important Cultural Property
This 116.4cm statue is Nageiredo Hall’s central figure. Using the yosegi-zukuri method, hinoki (Japanese cypress) wood was carved and gilded to form this statue.
Zao is believed to be the guardian deity that guides Shugendo practitioners and conquers evil.
When the statue was previously being repaired, a document was found inside the statue and was examined. It was revealed that the statue was made by Kokei (Unkei’s master) in 1168. A scientific investigation reached the same findings.
* “Yosegi-zukuri” is a technique where several pieces of wood are carved separately before they are assembled together.

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  • Title: Wooden Standing Statue of Zao Gongen (Enshrined at the Inner Sanctuary)
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date: 12th Century Late Heian Period
  • Type: Artworks and Crafts
  • External Link: http://www.mitokusan.jp/sanbutsuji.html

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