Studio: international art — 51.1911

Page: 299
DOI issue: DOI article: DOI Page: Citation link: 
https://digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/diglit/studio1911/0320
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Japanese Temples and their Treasures .

JAPANESE TEMPLES AND
THEIR TREASURES. BY PROF.
JIRO HARADA.

Someone has remarked that Japan is not only
the “ Grand Park of the World,” but also the
“Treasure House of the East.” Nearly all the
principal temples and shrines in Japan, which
number at present no fewer than ten thousand, are
to a great extent the common repositories of the
art treasures not only of our country, but of other
eastern countries as well. They are, as it were,
national museums. The need of preserving these
valuable buildings from any further decay and their
treasures from iconoclasm and other loss induced
the Government to get a law passed, in 1897,
providing for the appointment of an archaeological
commission, now consisting of twenty-five members,
in the Department of the Interior, to decide on
the selection of the buildings and art objects to
be put under State protection. At present there
are 733 temples and shrines under special protec-

tion, while the objects of artistic or historical merit
registered on the list of “ national treasures ”
number nearly two thousand. It is for the purpose
of showing some of the more important and cha-
racteristic works of art belonging to this category
that a very important work, “Japanese Temples
and Their Treasures,” has been prepared at the
instance of the Department of the Interior of
the Japanese Government. At every important
international exposition of late years, in which
Japan has taken part officially, it has been custom-
ary for the Government to present the nations of
the West with some valuable publications of singular
attraction, which stand out amidst the hundreds
of books and pamphlets usually distributed on such
occasions. This course was followed in connection
with the World’s Columbian Exposition held in
Chicago in 1893; the International Exposition of
Paris in 1900, and the St. Louis World’s Fair, 1904.
In view of the Japan-British Exhibition, held at
Shepherd’s Bush, and recently brought to so suc-
cessful a termination, an illustrated catalogue of

A TYPICAL EXAMPLE OF SHINTO ARCHITECTURE AT THE SHRINE OF IZUMO
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