Tonomi-no-saku was one of the castles of the Abe clan in the Heian Period. The Abe had originally been appointed by the Kyoto government as governors to help control the local population by the Kyoto court. As their power grew, they took control of 6 provinces in Iwate Prefecture and had as many as 12 castles, one of which was Tonomi-no-saku. By the mid 11th Century they stopped paying taxes to Kyoto and friction developed between them and neighboring governors who were still loyal to Kyoto. The Abe were defeated by the combined forces of the Minamoto and governors of Mutsu and Dewa provinces in what became known as the Earlier Nine Year's War. The castle was likely destroyed or abandoned at this time.

Visit Notes

You may see the name in English as Tomomi Palisade but I don't think palisade is an accurate description for such sites. Almost nothing remains of the actual castle today. The castle included a large natural waterway as a trench which remains but otherwise the castle has been developed over by roads, farming and residential areas. By itself, Tonomi-no-saku is not worth going out of your way to visit, but combined with nearby Kanegasaki Castle (Iwate) (and the nearby samurai homes), Isawa Castle, and the Mizusawa samurai homes or a trip to Morioka Castle you could make a worthwhile day trip in the area.

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  • Tonomi-no-saku
  • Tonomi-no-saku
  • Natural waterway creating a trench defense
  • Natural waterway creating a trench defense
  • Natural waterway creating a trench defense
  • Tonomi-no-saku
  • Path to the rest of the castle
  • go this way for the castle waterway
  • Map from the parking area to the rest of the castle
  • Sign noting the castle became a National Historical Site

Castle Profile
English Name Tonomi-no-saku
Japanese Name 鳥海柵
Alternate Names Tonomi Palisade
Founder Abe clan
Year Founded Heian Period
Castle Type Flatland
Castle Condition Ruins only
Designations National Historic Site
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Features trenches
Visitor Information
Access Kanegasaki Sta
Visitor Information Open any time
Time Required 20 mins
Location Kanegasaki, Iwate Prefecture
Coordinates 39° 11' 27.38" N, 141° 6' 50.11" E
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Added to Jcastle 2018
Admin Year Visited 2018
Admin Visits May 12, 2018

(2 votes)
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71 months ago
Score 1++
Palisade is just a dodgy google translation of 柵 I bet.