Society | Jan 24

Emperor and Empress Delight in Viewing Shosoin Treasure Replicas

TOKYO, Jan 24 (News On Japan) - The Emperor and Empress of Japan recently visited an exhibition featuring replicas of the treasures from the Shosoin Repository.

Their Majesties arrived at the Meiji Jingu Museum in Shibuya, Tokyo, around 4:30 PM on the 23rd, where they were warmly received by the officials present.

During their visit, the Emperor and Empress admired replicas of the Shosoin treasures, including a biwa (a traditional Japanese lute) intricately recreated with mother-of-pearl inlay, a project that took eight years to complete.

The Emperor expressed his admiration for the beautifully adorned biwa, saying, "This is incredible." The biwa strings were made from silk threads obtained from 'Goyosan,' a sericulture process conducted at the Imperial Palace. The Empress remarked, "It's gratifying to see them being used in such a manner."

Their Majesties spent over two hours at the exhibition, engaging in discussions with the attendees. As they prepared to leave, the Emperor shared his profound impression of the exhibit, commenting, "I am deeply moved by this wonderful display."

This exhibition not only showcases Japan’s rich cultural history but also highlights the dedication to preserving and celebrating the nation's artistic heritage. The visit of the Emperor and Empress underscores the significance of these cultural treasures and the ongoing efforts to keep Japan’s historical legacy alive.

The Shōsō-in (正倉院) is the treasure house of Tōdai-ji Temple in Nara. It currently safeguards approximately 9,000 artifacts, excluding yet-to-be-classified items. Initially established through donations from Empress Komyo, the repository's Northern section, known as the Hoku So, has been under the strict custodianship of the imperial family since its inception. Access to this segment of the Shosoin has historically been restricted, with entry granted only under the explicit permission of the imperial household.

A remarkable 95% of the Shosoin's collection, encompassing a wide array of fine arts and crafts, originates from Japan's 8th century.

Source: ANN


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