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Key Buildings from Prehistory to the Present by Andrew Ballantyne

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Golden Pavilion Temple

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Muromachi, Kyoto, Japan; 1397

Muromachi is the name both of a district and of a period of Japanese history (from 1336 to 1573) when Japan was run by the Ashikaga shogunate. The emperor was the nominal head of state and an important symbolic figure – the head of the traditional Shinto religion – but in matters of practical politics the shogun was in charge. Originally, ‘shogun’ was a military title, but it became hereditary.

Ashikaga Takauji (1305–58), a samurai warrior descended from emperors, was the first of the Muromachi shoguns. The Golden Pavilion Temple, or Kinkaku-ji, was built by his grandson, Ashikaga Yoshimitsu ...

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