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Encyclopedia > Kansai region
Kansai region, Japan
Kansai region, Japan

The Kansai region (関西地方 Kansai-chihō?) of Japan, also known as the Kinki region (近畿地方 Kinki-chihō?), lies in the Southern-Central region of Japan's main island, Honshū. The region includes the prefectures of Nara, Wakayama, Mie, Kyoto, Osaka, Hyōgo, and Shiga. Small map of the Kinki region, Japan Map outline from public domain maps at http://aoki2. ... Small map of the Kinki region, Japan Map outline from public domain maps at http://aoki2. ... HonshÅ« (本州 Literally Main State) is the largest island of Japan, called the Mainland; it is south of Hokkaido across the Tsugaru Strait, north of Shikoku across the Inland Sea, and northeast of Kyushu across the Kanmon Strait. ... The term prefecture (from the Latin Praefectura) indicates the office, seat, territorial circonscription of a Prefect; consequentally, like that word, is its applied in English in relation to actual Prefects, whose title is just that (or the forms it takes in other, especially Romance, languages), in the broadest sense in... Nara Prefecture ) is part of the Kinki region on HonshÅ« Island, Japan. ... Wakayama Prefecture ) is part of the Kii Peninsula in the Kinki region on HonshÅ« island, Japan. ... Mie Prefecture (三重県; Mie-ken) is part of the Kinki region on Honshu island, Japan. ... The Iwashimizu Hachimangu, a Shinto shrine in Yawata. ... Osaka Prefecture (大阪府 ÅŒsaka-fu) is part of the Kinki region on Honshu island, Japan. ... Hyōgo Prefecture (兵庫県 Hyōgo-ken) is located in the Kinki region on Honshu island, Japan. ... Shiga Prefecture from outer space. ...

Contents

Overview

The Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge, the longest suspension bridge in the world
The Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge, the longest suspension bridge in the world

Making up 11% of Japan's land area and 24 million residents, the Kansai region is the cultural and historical heart of Japan.[1] The Kinki Plain, containing the cities of Osaka and Kyoto forms the core of the region. From there, the Kansai area streches west along the Seto Inland Sea towards Himeji and Kobe and east encompassing Lake Biwa, Japan's largest freshwater lake. The region is bordered in the north by the Sea of Japan and at the Kii Peninsula meets the Pacific Ocean in the south. Four of Japan's national parks lie within its borders, in whole or in part. The area also contains six of the seven top prefectures in terms of national treasures.[2] Other geographical highlights include Amanohashidate in Kyoto Prefecture and Awaji Island in Hyogo. Download high resolution version (1024x681, 153 KB)copyright-free This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Download high resolution version (1024x681, 153 KB)copyright-free This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... For other uses, see Osaka (disambiguation). ... Kyoto )   is a city in the central part of the island of HonshÅ«, Japan. ... An inland sea is a shallow sea that covers central areas of continents during high stands of sea level that result in marine transgressions. ... ÅŒtemae-dōri (main-street) as seen from Himeji castle Himeji (姫路市; -shi) is a city located in Kansai region (Hyogo prefecture), Japan. ... Kobe ) is the capital city of Hyōgo Prefecture and a prominent port city in Japan with a population of about 1. ... Lake Biwa ), formerly known as ÅŒmi Lake, is the largest fresh water lake in Japan, located in Shiga Prefecture (west-central Honshu), northeast of the former capital city of Kyoto. ... The Sea of Japan (East Sea) is a marginal sea of the western Pacific Ocean. ... The Kii Peninsula is one of the largest peninsulas on the island of Honshu in Japan. ... List of national parks of Japan National Parks Hokkaido (North) Rishiri-Rebun-Sarobetsu National Park Shiretoko National Park Daisetsuzan National Park Akan National Park Shikotsu-Toya National Park Tohoku (Northeast) Towada-Hachimantai National Park Rikuchu Coast National Park Bandai-Asahi National Park Kanto (East) Nikko National Park Chichibu-Tama National... The idea of national treasure, like national epics and national anthems, is part of the language of Romantic nationalism, which arose in the late 18th century and 19th centuries. ... Amanohashidate as seen from the west Amanohashidate (天橋立) is one of Japans three scenic views. ... The Iwashimizu Hachimangu, a Shinto shrine in Yawata. ... Awaji Island (Jp. ... Hyōgo Prefecture (兵庫県 Hyōgo-ken) is located in the Kinki region on Honshu island, Japan. ...


The Kansai region is often compared (yet more often contrasted) with the Kantō region, which lies to its east and is comprised primarily of Tokyo and the surrounding area. Whereas the Kanto region is symbolic of standardization throughout Japan (from government to economics to language), the Kansai region displays many more idiosyncrasies: the culture in Kyoto, the mercantilism of Osaka, the history of Nara, or the cosmopolitanism of Kobe, and could be said to represent the locus of counterculture in Japan. This East-West rivalry has deep historical roots, particularly from the Edo period. Having a samurai population of less than 1%, the culture of the merchant city of Osaka stood in sharp contrast to that of Edo, the seat of power for the Tokugawa shogunate.[3] Kantō region, Japan. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Kyoto )   is a city in the central part of the island of HonshÅ«, Japan. ... For other uses, see Osaka (disambiguation). ... Nara can refer to: The city of Nara, Nara Prefecture, Japan The Nara Period of the History of Japan Nara prefecture, part of the Kansai region of central Honshu, Japan Nara is a major Manchu clan. ... Kobe ) is the capital city of Hyōgo Prefecture and a prominent port city in Japan with a population of about 1. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... The following text needs to be harmonized with text in the article History of Japan#Edo Period. ... EDO may refer to: EDO Corporation, an American technology company Equal Division of the Octave, a system of musical tuning Extended Data Out DRAM, a type of Dynamic random access memory Edo may refer to: Edo State, a province in Nigeria Edo language, a language spoken in Nigeria The historical... The Tokugawa shogunate or Tokugawa bakufu (徳川幕府) (also known as the Edo bakufu) was a feudal military dictatorship of Japan established in 1603 by Tokugawa Ieyasu and ruled by the shoguns of the Tokugawa family until 1868. ...


Many characteristic traits of Kansai people descend from Osaka merchant culture. As Catherine Maxwell, an editor for the newsletter Omusubi, writes: "Kansai residents are seen as being pragmatic, entrepreneurial, down-to-earth and possessing a strong sense of humour. Kanto people on the other hand are perceived as more sophisticated, reserved and formal, in keeping with Tokyo’s history and modern status as the nation’s capital and largest metropolis."[3][4]


Popular regional foods include takoyaki, okonomiyaki and kitsune udon. Hyogo Prefecture is well known for its beef and other dairy products (see Kobe beef). Sake is another specialty of the region, the areas of Nada and Fushimi producing 45% of all the sake in Japan.[5] As opposed to food from Eastern Japan, food in the Kansai area tends to be sweeter, and foods such as nattō tend to be less popular.[3][4] A Boat of Takoyaki Square takoyaki pan with 16 molds Takoyaki ) (literally fried or baked octopus) is a popular Japanese dumpling made of batter, diced octopus, tempura scraps (tenkasu), pickled ginger, konnyaku, and green onion, topped with okonomiyaki sauce, green laver (aonori), mayonnaise, and katsuobushi (fish shavings), originated in Osaka. ... A man prepares okonomiyaki at in a restaurant in Hiroshima, Japan Cheese (above) and shrimp okonomiyaki fully seasoned with sauce, mayonnaise, katsuobushi and aonori in Osaka, Japan Lantern beckons the unwary tourist into an okonomiyaki restaurant Okonomiyaki ) is a pan-fried Japanese dish cooked with various ingredients. ... Tempura Udon Udon (Hiragana:うどん; Kanji:饂飩, rarely 餛飩; Traditional Chinese: , wÅ«dōng, sometimes 烏冬麵, wÅ«dōngmiàn) is a type of thick wheat-based noodle popular in Japanese cuisine. ... Hyōgo Prefecture (兵庫県 Hyōgo-ken) is located in the Kinki region on Honshu island, Japan. ... Kobe beef for sukiyaki Kobe beef refers to beef from the black Tajima-ushi breed of Wagyu cattle, raised according to strict tradition in Hyogo Prefecture, Japan. ... Sake barrels at Itsukushima Shrine. ... Nada-ku (灘区; Nada-ku) is one of 9 wards of Kobe City in Japan. ... Categories: Japan-related stubs ... Natto eaten on top of rice is commonly stirred before consumption Nattō ) is a traditional Japanese food made from fermented soybeans, popular especially at breakfast. ...


The dialects (弁, -ben) of the people of the Kansai region have their own variations of pronunciation, vocabulary, and grammar which are unique to the region. Kansai-ben is a term referring to the group of dialects spoken in the Kansai area, but is often treated as a dialect in its own right. Kansai-ben is especially strong in cities such as Osaka, Kyoto, and Kobe. The Japanese language, in addition to to Standard Japanese (Hyōjungo, 標準語), which most closely resembles Tokyo speech, has dozens of regional dialects. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...


History

Map of 8th century Japan
Map of 8th century Japan

The terms Kansai (関西), Kinki (近畿) and Kinai (畿内) have a very deep history, dating back almost as far as the nation of Japan itself. As a part of the Ritsuryō reforms of the 6th century, the Gokishichidō system established the provinces of Yamato, Yamashiro, Kawachi, Settsu and Izumi. Kinai and Kinki, both roughly meaning "the neighbourhood of the capital", referred to these provinces. In common usage, Kinai now refers to the Osaka-Kobe-Kyoto (Keihanshin) area, the center of the Kansai region. Image File history File linksMetadata Tosando. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Tosando. ... Ritsuryō (律令) is the historical law system based on the philosophies of Confucianism and Chinese Legalism in Japan. ... Provincial Map of Japan in the 8th Century AD Gokishichidō , Gokishichidō, lit. ... Before the modern prefecture system was established, the land of Japan was divided into tens of Kuni (国, Countries). ... Yamato () was a province of Japan. ... Categories: Japan geography stubs | Old provinces of Japan ... Kawachi (河内国; -no kuni) was a province of Japan, which today composes the south-eastern part of Osaka Prefecture. ... Settsu province (摂津国, Settsu no kuni), Tsu province (津国, Tsu no kuni), or Sesshu (æ‘‚å·ž, SesshÅ«) was a province of Japan, which today comprises the eastern part of Hyogo Prefecture and the northern part of Osaka Prefecture. ... Izumi (和泉国; -no kuni) or Senshu (泉州 senshÅ«) was a province of Japan, which today composes the south-western part of Osaka Prefecture (not including the city of Osaka itself). ... ÅŒsaka-Kōbe-Kyōto is the name of a metropolitan area that is centered around the cities of Osaka in the Osaka prefecture, Kobe in the Hyogo prefecture, and Kyoto in the Kyoto prefecture. ...


Kansai (literally "west of the border") in its original usage refers to the land west of the Ousaka Checkpoint (逢坂の関), the border between Yamashiro Province and Ōmi Province (present-day Kyoto and Shiga prefectures).[6] During the Kamakura period, this border was redefined to include Ōmi and Iga Provinces.[6] It is not until the Edo period that Kansai came to acquire its current form.[7] (see Kamigata) Like all regions of Japan, the Kansai region is not an administrative unit, but rather a cultural and historical one. Categories: Japan geography stubs | Old provinces of Japan ... This ukiyo-e by Hiroshige illustrates the sailboats at Yahashi, one of the Eight Views of ÅŒmi. ... The Iwashimizu Hachimangu, a Shinto shrine in Yawata. ... Shiga Prefecture from outer space. ... The following text needs to be harmonized with text in the article History of Japan#Kamakura Period. ... This ukiyo-e by Hiroshige illustrates the sailboats at Yahashi, one of the Eight Views of ÅŒmi. ... Ueno Castle Iga Province (伊賀国; -no kuni) was an old province of Japan in the area that is today western Mie prefecture. ... The following text needs to be harmonized with text in the article History of Japan#Edo Period. ... Kamigata (上方) is a region of Japan referring to the cities of Kyoto and Osaka; the term is used particularly when discussing elements of Edo period urban culture such as ukiyo-e and kabuki, and when making a comparison to the urban culture of the Edo/Tokyo region. ... Map of the regions of Japan. ...

Himeji Castle
Himeji Castle

The Kansai region lays claim to the earliest beginnings of Japanese civilization. It was Nara, the most eastern point on the Silk Road, that became the site of Japan's first permanent capital.[8] This period (AD 710-784) saw the spread of Buddhism to Japan and the construction of Tōdai-ji in 745. The Kansai region also boasts the Shinto religion's holiest shrine at Ise Shrine (built in 690 AD) in Mie prefecture.[9] Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1767x1341, 114 KB) Summary Description: photo of Himeji Castle The Keep Towers(view from Nisi-no-maru) Source: ja:画像:Himeji-jo. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1767x1341, 114 KB) Summary Description: photo of Himeji Castle The Keep Towers(view from Nisi-no-maru) Source: ja:画像:Himeji-jo. ... Nara ) is the capital city of Nara Prefecture in the Kansai region of Japan, near Kyoto. ... The Silk Road Silk Route redirects here. ... The Nara period ) of the history of Japan covers the years from about AD 710 to 784. ... // Events End of the Asuka period, the second and last part of the Yamato period and beginning of the Nara period in Japan. ... Events August 31 - Paul IV abdicates as Patriarch of Constantinople December 25 - Tarasius elected Patriarch of Constantinople The Japanese capital moved away from Nara. ... Buddhism is a dharmic, non-theistic religion, which is also a philosophy and a system of psychology. ... Main hall of Tōdai-ji Tōdai-ji (東大寺), the Eastern Great Temple, is a Buddhist temple in Nara, Japan. ... Events Births November 10 - Musa al-Kazim, Shia Imam (d. ... Shinto ) is the native religion of Japan and was once its state religion. ... Ise Shrine Ise Shrine (Ise-jingÅ« 伊勢神宮) is a Shinto shrine to the goddess Amaterasu ōmikami, located in the city of Ise in Mie prefecture, Japan. ... Events Beginning of Wu Zetians Zhou Dynasty in China. ... Mie Prefecture (三重県; Mie-ken) is part of the Kinki region on Honshu island, Japan. ...


The Heian period saw the capital moved to Heian-kyō (平安京, present-day Kyoto), where it would remain for over a thousand years until the Meiji Restoration. During this golden age, the Kansai region would give birth to traditional Japanese culture. In 819, Kūkai, the founder of the Shingon sect of Buddhism established his monastery at Mount Koya in Wakayama prefecture. Japan's most famous tale, and some say the world's first modern novel, The Tale of Genji was penned by Murasaki Shikibu while performing as a lady-in-waiting in Heian-kyo. Noh and Kabuki, Japan's traditional dramatic forms both saw their birth and evolution in Kyoto, while Bunraku, Japanese puppet theater, is native to Osaka. The following text needs to be harmonized with text in the article History of Japan#Heian Period. ... Kyoto )   is a city in the central part of the island of HonshÅ«, Japan. ... The Meiji Restoration ), also known as the Meiji Ishin, Revolution, or Renewal, was a chain of events that led to enormous changes in Japans political and social structure. ... Events The Abbasid capital is moved back to Baghdad Louis the Pious marries Judith Welf Births Deaths Categories: 819 ... Painting of Kukai (774-835). ... Shingon (眞言,真言), also called Japanese Esoteric Buddhism, is a major school of Japanese Buddhism, and one of two major sub-schools of Vajrayana Buddhism, the other being Tibetan Buddhism. ... Konpon Daito, the central point of Mt. ... Wakayama Prefecture ) is part of the Kii Peninsula in the Kinki region on HonshÅ« island, Japan. ... Ilustration of ch. ... Murasaki Shikibu (紫 式部 Murasaki Shikibu, c. ... Lady in Waiting is an album by American southern rock band The Outlaws, released in 1976. ... Noh performance at Itsukushima Shrine, Miyajima, Hiroshima Noh or Nō (Japanese: 能) is a major form of classical Japanese musical drama that has been performed since the 14th century. ... The Kabukiza in Ginza is one of Tokyos leading kabuki theaters. ... Bunraku (Japanese: 文楽), also known as Ningyō jōruri (人形浄瑠璃), is a form of traditional Japanese puppet theater, founded in Osaka in 1684. ... For other uses, see Osaka (disambiguation). ...


Because of its unique position in Japanese history, the Kansai region hosts a number of well-known historical and cultural landmarks, including five of Japan's thirteen World Heritage Sites: Hōryū-ji, Himeji Castle, Kiyomizu-dera, Tōdai-ji, and Mount Koya.[10] A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... Horyu-ji. ... view from Nishi-no-maru Himeji Castle (姫路城; -jō) is a Japanese castle located in Himeji in Hyogo Prefecture. ... Kiyomizu-dera Kiyomizu-dera (or Kiyomizudera, 清水寺) refers to several Buddhist temples but most commonly to Otowasan Kiyomizudera (音羽山清水寺) in Eastern Kyoto, and one of the best known sights of the city. ... Main hall of Tōdai-ji Tōdai-ji (東大寺), the Eastern Great Temple, is a Buddhist temple in Nara, Japan. ... Konpon Daito, the central point of Mt. ...


Gallery

See also

Japan is an island nation in East Asia comprised of a large stratovolcanic archipelago extending along the Pacific coast of Asia. ... Japan is informally divided into eight regions. ... Ōsaka-Kōbe-Kyōto is the name of a metropolitan area that is centered around the cities of Osaka in the Osaka prefecture, Kobe in the Hyogo prefecture, and Kyoto in the Kyoto prefecture. ...

References

  1. ^ Japan Reference: Kansai, retrieved January 17. 2007
  2. ^ Kansai Now: History, retrieved January 17, 2007
  3. ^ a b c Omusubi - "Japan's Regional Diversity", retrieved January 22, 2007
  4. ^ a b Livingabroadin.com - "Prime Living Locations in Japan", retrieved January 22, 2007
  5. ^ Kansai Window - "Japan's number one sake production", retrieved January 24, 2007
  6. ^ a b Entry for 「関西」. Kojien, fifth edition, 1998, [ISBN 4-00-080111-2]
  7. ^ Entry for 「上方」. Kojien, fifth edition, 1998, [ISBN 4-00-080111-2]
  8. ^ Kansai Economic Federation - "Kansai Brief History", retrieved January 17, 2007
  9. ^ Japan Reference - "Ise Jingu Guide", retrieved January 17, 2007
  10. ^ UNESCO World Heritage Centre: Japan, retrieved January 17, 2007 - Kiyomizu-dera, Todai-ji, and Mount Koya are part of collections of sites and chosen as representative
  11. ^ Consulate-General of Japan in San Francisco

January 17 is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 17 is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 22 is the 22nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 22 is the 22nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 24 is the 24th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... January 17 is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 17 is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 17 is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ...

External links

  • Kansai travel guide from Wikitravel
  • KansaiConnect Community for English speakers interested in the Kansai region.
  • KansaiSearch English search engine for the Kansai region.

 
 

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