Rinnôji monastery, (in) Nikkô, Tochigi Prefecture, JP

Raw data

Possibly founded by Shôdô (Shoto) in 766, Rinnôji became a Tendai institution under Ennin (793?–864), who restored the main buildings. In the Edo period (1600–1868), Rinnôji was patronized by the Tokugawa shoguns. The Sanbutsudô (Hall of the Three Buddhas) houses a number of important statues, including a gold lacquer triad representing Amida Nyôrai and two Kannon bodhisattva, which comprises the main object of worship.

- Uryû (2006: 217)

In the Kamakura period (1185–1333), monks in service to the Kamakura Shogunate flocked to Rinnôji. Located in the foothills of mountains to the north of the Kantô plain, the monastery attracted mountain ascetics (yamabushi), who contributed to the syncretism between Buddhism and Shinto; the triad of the Sanbutsudô was equated with the spirits of three mountain peaks. In the Muromachi period (1333–1568), Rinnôji controlled 180,000 koku of estates and 500 sub-temples. Today, it consists of 15 halls. There is a well-known meditation garden.

- “Nikkôzan sôhondô: Sanbutsudô” http://www.rinnoji.or.jp/

“In Kamakura period, Benkaku established Koumyouin House and designated it as a main house of Nikko.” – “Rinnoji Temple” http://www.nikko-jp.org/english/rinnoji/index.html

Input by: Lizbeth H. Piel, Oct 02, 2010

Final data (and their sources)

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 Rinnoji monastery, JP.

General location of the Rinnoji monastery, JP.
Lat 36.75427 Long 139.60102
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (http://www.fallingrain.com), 2010.

Google Map link:


Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

  • Rinnôji 輪王寺. Alternative English spelling: Rinnoji, Rinnô-ji. Rinno-ji

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • Japan: Tochigi Prefecture

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

  • Approx., Lat 36.75427 Long 139.60102, based on the visual identification of the monastery in maps, maps.google.com - tmciolek, 26 Oct 2010.

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

  • [missing data]

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

  • Nikkô-shi, Sannai

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

8. The settlement's coordinates

[missing data]

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

  • Mahayana

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

  • Tendai

11. Date-early

  • 766 – Uryû (2006: 217)

12. Date-intermediate

  • 9th century - Uryû (2006: 217)

13. Date-late

  • Tokugawa / Edo period (1600–1868) - Uryû (2006: 217)

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

[missing data]

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • Architecture, documents

16. Additional notes

  • In the Muromachi period (1333–1568), Rinnôji controlled 180,000 koku of estates, and 500 sub-temples. - http://www.rinnoji.or.jp/

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

[missing data]

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