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Pagodas in Japan

Chinese pagoda, itself an interpretation of the Indian stupa.[1] Like the stupa, pagodas were originally used as reliquaries but in many cases they ended up losing this function.[2] Pagodas are quintessentially Buddhist and an important component of Japanese Buddhist temple compounds but, because until the Kami and Buddhas Separation Act of 1868, a Shinto shrine was normally also a Buddhist temple and vice versa, they are not rare at shrines either. The famous Itsukushima Shrine, for example, has one.[3]

After the Meiji Restoration the word , once used exclusively in a religious context, came to mean also “tower” in the western sense, as for example in Eiffel tower (エッフェル塔 Efferu-tō).


Photo and text: Wikipedia