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The ruin of Usuki Castle in Oita Prefecture attracts the locals as a place for cherry blossoms.

This castle was constructed in 1562 by Otomo Sorin, who was well known as a Christian daimyo feudal lord. To be more precise, this year of construction is not determined yet. This hill, where the castle buildings stood, originally was a small island near the seacoast. Usuki Castle was impregnable thanks to the natural moat of seawater at that time. As the neighborhood of this little island was reclaimed at the end of the 19th century, it is hard to imagine its former aspect. In this connection, a Christian church was found in this castle enclosure, and several churches also stood in the downtown area of the castle town in the second half of the 16th century. The Inaba clan, thereafter, became the lord of this castle at the beginning of the Edo period in the early 17th century, and the successive Inaba clan ruled over Usuki domain from this castle till the end of the Edo period in the middle of the 19th century. After the major buildings of the castle were dismantled in 1873, the last lord of the Inaba clan moved to Tokyo. However he built a mansion near the castle site in Usuki, as shown in the second picture, so that he can stay when he returned home. Thus this mansion is one of the tourist spots in Usuki City.

Licensed tour guide, travel consultant,

Masahisa Takaki.

全国通訳案内士 高木聖久。


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