Unagizuka Castle (Mikawa)

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MikawaUnagizukajou (1).jpg


Unagiźukajō was a hillside fort likely used as a borderland fort and satellite fortification protecting Nagasawa, a valley to the immediate east where there are many fortified residence sites. ‘Unagiźuka’ means ‘eel mound’, and there is a legend in Nagasawa that villagers built a sacred mound at this site to protect against the tatari (‘divine wrath’) of the giant eel slain by Sakanōe Tamuramaro, Japan’s second shogun (8th century). It’s not clear to the author where the eel lived, or whether it was attacking villagers or just minding its own business when Tamuramaro slew it. Many legends and impressive feats are associated with Tamuramaro, and so my assumption is that slaying the giant eel was something he did just casually whilst passing through.

Visit Notes

Nothing remains of Unagiźukajō, and the site is now fields and factories. The site is on the border of the municipalities of Okazaki (Motojuku) and Toyokawa (Nagasawa), and a sort of restored entrance area beside the highway can be found here for the former inn-town of Motojuku.

  • Entrance to Motojuku-shukuba

Castle Profile
English Name Unagizuka Castle (Mikawa)
Japanese Name 三河鰻塚城
Founder Nagasawa Clan
Year Founded Medieval Era
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition Ruins only
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Visitor Information
Access Motojuku Station on the Meitetsu Nagoya Line; 15 minute walk
Visitor Information 24/7 free; fields
Time Required 5 minutes
Location Okazaki, Aichi Prefecture
Coordinates 34° 52' 57.11" N, 137° 15' 57.13" E
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Added to Jcastle 2023
Contributor ART
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed
Friends of JCastle
Jōkaku Shashin Kiroku
Aichi Shiro

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