Chikuzenbara-toride is said to have been built by Hotta Bizen as his residence in the Heian period. Although that has not been ascertained, the site is thought to have been part of a residential area for the Kai-Kokubunji (province-level temple) to the south. The national government also maintained warehouses here. After the fall of the Takeda Clan in 1582, the site was (re-)fortified in the conflicts between Tokugawa Ieyasu and Hōjō Ujinau for control of Kai. The area of the fort measured 98m east-west and 90m north-south. The ramparts were earthen structures 3m wide, accompanied by moats 3m wide and 2m deep. Archaelogical digs have unearthed evidences of moats, buildings and fences. The history and structure of the site are enduring mysteries.
Chikuzenbara-toride (alternatively Chikuzenbara-no-rui) features dorui (earthen ramparts) in several places. There is a row of dorui on at least one side of the Kaina Shrine at the edge of the site. Then there is evidence of taller dorui and a moat behind a small plot of housing opposite the shrine, but these structures are very overgrown. I went around the other side of the tallest dorui to a temple called Senshōji (it had the worst priest's house of any I have ever seen - very jarring), and furtively crept into the bamboo grove at the rear of the temple hall. There was more dorui here enclosing very small areas. These might be the remains of warehouses, or even of a gate structure. The bamboo was too dense and strewn about to allow for a proper exploration, and I was being assailed by mosquitoes. Some bloggers report the remains of a mizubori (water moat); I didn't find it but I wonder if the mozzies were coming from there.
|English Name||Chikuzenbara Fort|
|Founder||Hotta Bizen (Legendary)|
|Year Founded||Heian Period; Late Sengoku Period|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Visitor Information||24/7 free; temple|
|Time Required||30 minutes|
|Location||Fuefuki, Yamanashi Prefecture|
|Coordinates||35° 38' 48.73" N, 138° 40' 50.34" E|
|Added to Jcastle||2022|
|Admin Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|
|Friends of JCastle|
|Oshiro Tabi Nikki|
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