The Structure of Kōshin-an

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The Structure of Kōshin-an

An iori, or an, is a small, roughly-built hut whose roof and walls are made of grass and wood. Kōshin-an is modeled after Bashō’s Genjū-an and is neither made of expensive woods nor built by a famous carpenter. It is a miracle that such a building remains today more than two hundred years after it was built.

Kōshin-an has changed due to damage and the process of aging and through reconstruction and repair by its inhabitants. The present-day Kōshin-an has been restored in a way that suggests what it was like in the Edo period.

The rooms contain shōji (sliding paper screens) and fusuma (framed and papered sliding doors used as room partitions). The shōji soften the light and project the change of the seasons into the room. Here Chodō enjoyed drinking sencha tea with his friends.

Wastepaper or old mosquito nets were concealed in the groundwork of the walls in order to prevent cracking. The names of many samurai from Matsuyama Fief in the Edo period were written on the old paper.