Byakugôji monastery, (in) Nara, Nara Prefecture, JP

Raw data

Located on the slopes of Mt. Takamado to the southeast of Nara City, Byakukôji is said to have been founded on the site of the villa of Prince Shiki, the seventh son of Emperor Tenji. It was apparently converted into a temple under imperial orders by the monk Gonzô after the prince died in 715. Another theory is that it originated as a cloister of a monastery, Iwabuchidera, today no longer in existence.

Documents indicate that it flourished in the Kamakura period (1185–1333) under Eizon, a leader of the Shingon Ritsu sect from Saidaiji. His disciple invested the temple with a complete set of scriptures, turning it into a training academy for monks. When the buildings burned down during the Kamakura period, the resident monks desperately tried to save the images of worship, but the Byakukôji did not revive until the Edo period. Today, the main object of worship is a statue of Amida (Amitābha) Buddha.
-Mediaunion, ed. (2007: 26-7)

The temple name dates to the late Heian period. In the early 17th century, Tokugawa Ieyasu, founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate, donated 50 koku of landed estates. - Tamamuro (1992:713)

Input by: Lizbeth H. Piel, Aug 16, 2010

Final data (and their sources)

Last updated: 29 Dec 2012

Lat/Long coordinates' accuracy:
The monastery in question is assumed to be situated actually no farther than 200 m from the point defined by the coordinates below.

Location of Byakugo-ji monastery, JP.

General location of the Byakugo-ji monastery, JP.
Lat 34.671014 Long 135.851208
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (, 2010.

Google Map link:,%20JP)&ll=34.671014,135.851208&spn=05.0,05.0&t=k&hl=en

Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

  • Byakugôji 百豪寺. Alternative English spelling: Byakugô-ji, Byakugoji

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • Japan: Nara Prefecture

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

6. Modern name of the known nearest city, town, or village

  • Nara-shi (Nara City), Byakugoji-chô

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

  • Nara was known as Heijô-kyô (Heijô Capital)

8. The settlement's coordinates

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

  • Mahayana

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

  • Shingon Ritsu

11. Date-early

  • Est. sometime after 715 CE - Mediaunion, ed. (2007: 27)
  • > * MBM chrono-tag 0700-32p 0733-66c 0767-99c - tmciolek 29 Dec 2012
  • > 0700-32p 0733-66c 0767-99c 0800-32c 0833-66c 0867-99c 0900-32c 0933-66c 0967-99c 1000-32c 1033-66c 1067-99c 1100-32c 1133-66c 1167-99c 1200=> dated-el

12. Date-intermediate

  • Kamakura period (1185–1333) - Mediaunion, ed. (2007: 27)

13. Date-late

  • Restored under Kukei in the Tokugawa period (1600–1868). – Mediaunion, ed. (2007: 27)
  • MBM chrono-tag 1200=> - tmciolek 29 Dec 2012

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

  • A connection with Saidiji through the Shingon Ritsu sect

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • Architecture, documents

16. Additional notes

  • [missing data] (incl. details of the size of the monastic population)

17. Corrections & addenda to this page were kindly provided by

  • [missing data]

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