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Home > Taito city Course (Asakusa) > Saibutsu Itabi (Board monument of Saibutsu Itabi)

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Taito city Course (Asakusa)

3 Saibutsu Itabi
(Board monument of Saibutsu Itabi)

Tangible Cultural Properties of Tokyo (Historical Materials)
Designated temporarily on February 5, 1924
Designated as Historic Site on April 1, 1952
Item changed on March 12, 1981

Saibutsu Itabi;Photo credit: Courtesy of Taito City Board of Education


Rubbed Copy of Saibutsu Itabi;Photo credit: Courtesy of Taito City Board of Education

Saibutsu Itabi is a board monument erected on the pond in front of Yogo-do Hall at the east of the main building of Senso-ji Temple,. "Itabi" is a kind of the stupas, which is made of rectangular stone board and has a triangular top. The stone stupas made of chlorite schist produced in Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture, are called "Aoishi Toba" (blue stupa), and have been preferred because of the beauty of their colors and shapes.

Saibutsu Itabi are engraved the followings on: a large Seed-Syllable of Shaka Nyorai at the center of the upper part, a Jizo Bosatsu standing on a lotus calyx and a vase with lotus flowers under the Seed-Syllable, an image of child acolyte of Buddhism on the right side of Jizo Bosatsu and a sentence that Saibutsu hoped for the happiness of his family in the current world and the next. Its builder Saibutsu had been supposed to be "KAMATA Saburo Nyudo Saibutsu" who was a magistrate ordered to construct the bank in Shimo Kobeno-sho Manor, Shimousa Province, according to Article August 29, 1253 in the history book "Azuma Kagami". However, it is unclear because there are several candidates of Saibutsu.

Saibutsu Itabi was destroyed by a storm in October, 1742. Then, it was broken into three, according to the topography "Edo Meisho Zue". The top part is said that it had been by the side of Inari-sha Shrine in Denboo-in Temple, but it is unfortunately missing. The remaining parts was reset by ten volunteers in 1814, supported by side pillars.

This board monument is estimated to be raised from the late Kamakura period to the early Muromachi period. Its size is 217.9 cm in height and 46 cm in width; this is the largest Aoishi Toba (blue stupa) in Tokyo. Saibutsu Itabi is important, not only as a valuable material for understanding the medieval belief, but also as a typical example of huge board monument.

Opening Information of the Senso-ji Temple

Opening Days:
All year
Opening Times:
All day
ToiletsAccessible facility