• Masashi

Nearby history / 足元の歴史


Morning glory was brought from China to Japan in the Nara period (710 - 794). Many gardeners started raising and breeding them at open spaces (today's Shitaya and Okachimachi in Tokyo) after great fire in 1803. Shortly after, many samurais also started raising morning glory as their side business and it became very popular. Especially, the flower called "Danjuro" became very famous. Tomejiro Naritaya, a gardener in Iriya, produced unique flower with reddish brown color. The name of the flower was named after celebrated Kabuki actor Danjuro Ichikawa because the color symbolized him on the stage "Shibaraku*1".

Furthermore, Danjuro was his favorite and used Danjuro's stage name "Naritaya" as his last name. Iriya became the birthplace of "Morning glory festival" still held in every July. Shitaya, Okachimachi, Iriya are my neighborhood. Exploring the past around familiar places is fun and I'm attracted to my home town more and more. Note

*1 Danjuro Ichikawa’s specialty  Source of images Morning glory : Sakata no Tane "Shibaraku" performed by Danjuro Ichikawa II : Toyokuni Utagawa III, Public domain

奈良時代に中国から日本に入ってきたと言われる朝顔。 1803年の江戸の大火後、焼け跡にできた空き地(現在の下谷、御徒町界隈)に、植木職人たちが様々な朝顔を植えて品種改良しはじめた。

やがて、武士たちも内職のひとつとして育てたことが大流行のきっかけに。 中でも有名になったのが、団十郎朝顔。 入谷に住んでいた職人、成田屋留次郎が育てあげた花の色は、市川団十郎「暫」の舞台衣装を思わせるえび茶。


入谷は、今でも毎年七月に開催される「あさがお市」発祥の地。 下谷、御徒町、入谷は、私宅のすぐそば。 身近な場所に残る歴史を知ると、地元に対する愛着がより一層湧いて来る。 画像出典 団十郎朝顔:サカタのタネ

二代目 市川団十郎「暫」:三代目 歌川豊国(パブリックドメイン)

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