Naegi CastleTwo of my favorite castles full of individuality

Speaking of castles, many people think of early modern castles with castle towers such as Himeji Castle and Nagoya Castle, but there are many unique castles all over the country. This time, I would like to introduce two unique castles that I recommend.

① Naegi Castle

Naegi Castle is said to have been built by the Toyama clan, who moved to this area in 1526. After the Honnoji Incident, the castle was captured by Nagayoshi Mori, but before the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600, the castle was recaptured under the instructions of Tokugawa Ieyasu, and from then on until the Meiji era, the castle was occupied for about 260 years. The Toyama clan ruled for 12 generations.

Naegi Castle is built on a rocky mountain called Mt. Takamori, which is approximately 432 meters above sea level. The Kiso River flows beside it, creating a natural water moat. The relative height difference from the Kiso River is about 126m. It is truly a natural stronghold.

Due to the unique topography of exposed bedrock and the limited amount of flat land available, it is not a suitable location for building a castle, but we have taken various measures to make the most of the location. This can be clearly seen from the castle tower.

The castle tower built on the top of the mountain was built astride two gigantic stones, and had three floors: a basement, and the first and second floors. The second floor is on top of a huge stone and has a floor area of approximately 9m x 11m. In order to make the most of the limited space on the mountaintop, castle towers were built with pillar holes made by drilling holes in the bedrock and protruding from the cliffs onto the slopes. Currently, an observation deck is being built using the posthole.

All of the buildings within the castle, including the castle tower, were made of wooden boards and mud walls. Because the red clay was exposed, it was also called "Red Cliff Castle." There is a theory that because he was a feudal lord with a wealth of 10,000 koku, he didn't have the money to paint white plaster, and that a dragon scraped it off with his claws, but I'm the only one who thinks this is rough and cool. Or?

The Honmaru is cool, but my favorite is the Oyagura ruins in Sannomaru. The stone wall was built using the huge rocks of the rocky mountain, and the collaboration between the natural megalith and the artificial stone wall is really cool!

②Noshima Castle

Noshima Castle is the base of the Noshima Murakami clan, a family of the Murakami Kaizoku (Murakami Suigun), known as ``Japan's greatest pirates.''
The Murakami Kaizoku clan consisted of three families: the Noshima Murakami family, the Innoshima Murakami family, and the Kurushima Murakami family, and they held control of the seas in the Seto Inland Sea.

When we hear of pirates, we think of Western pirates who attack ships and plunder goods and goods, but they also collect tolls and issue permits, and receive security fees to act as pilots. and ensured safe navigation.

Noshima Castle is a castle built around two small islands: Noshima Island, which has a circumference of approximately 850 meters, and Taisaki Island, which has a circumference of approximately 250 meters.
The island that juts out on three sides is made into a three-tiered curve, with the Honmaru placed at the highest point in the center of the island, and one level below that is the Ninomaru surrounding the Honmaru, with the Sannomaru to the west, Yato to the east, and the Yato to the south. Southeast Demaru was placed. Taizaki Island to the south was known as Taizaki Demaru.

The current around Noshima is fast, reaching up to 10 knots (18km/h). The underwater reefs around the island are also dangerous, so unless you know the tides and know the topography thoroughly, you won't be able to approach the island easily. It is truly a natural fortress.

The rocky area facing the sea was used as a military port. The remains of postholes dug into the reef, called reef pits, remain in the rocky area, and approximately 460 of them have been found. It is believed that a pillar was erected in the hole and a ship was tied to it. It is said that there are many reef pits left on the sea-eroded terrace (inuhashiri) in the area called Funamashi on the north side of the island.

In addition, two large holes over 1m in diameter and 2m deep were discovered. There is a full-size replica at the Murakami Pirate Museum, and it is quite large! However, its uses have not yet been elucidated.

There are many other unique, interesting, and cool castles across the country, so be sure to visit them and find your favorite castle!

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Naegi Castle

introducerTomomi Matsuki (Japanese Castle Certification Official Writer)She was a former flight attendant for a foreign airline and loved traveling abroad, but she also wanted to travel all over Japan, so she started touring Japan's 100 famous castles as if it were a stamp rally, but she fell in love with castles. When he was a student, he was not good at history and had no knowledge of castles or history, but after conquering Japan's 100 Famous Castles and Japan's 100 Famous Castles, he obtained the Japanese Castle Certification Grade 1. Currently working as a Japanese castle writer. Click here for official website/SNS
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