Samurai-Archives

Eisei Bunko

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The main building at the Eisei Bunko

The Eisei Bunko is the private archive of the Hosokawa clan collections. Established as an incorporated foundation (zaidan hônin) in 1950 by Hosokawa Moritatsu, it is based in a portion of the family's former estate in the Mejirodai area of Tokyo; a portion of the estate's gardens are maintained nearby as the Higo-Hosokawa Garden. The archive takes its name from the "ei" of Eigen-an, a branch temple of Kennin-ji (the family temple of a branch of the Hosokawa descended from Hosokawa Yoriari), and the "sei" of Seiryûji castle, home of Hosokawa Fujitaka.

The archive was opened to public visitors in 1972, and was officially registered as a museum the following year. The Eisei Bunko Museum was reorganized as a public interest institution (kôeki zaidan hônin) in 2010. It is housed in the former administrative building for the Hosokawa family estate, built in the late 1920s or early 1930s. The organization hosts four regular exhibits a year at this Tokyo location, as well as exhibits in a dedicated space at the Kumamoto Prefectural Art Museum. The archive also works closely with researchers at several institutions in Kumamoto and Tokyo, providing access to documents and artifacts in the collection in order to aid in research on Japanese art and history.

The collection includes eight National Treasures and 31 Important Cultural Properties, ranging from ancient bronze mirrors and Buddhist sculptures to ceramics and other tea wares, paintings, arms & armor, and historical documents. A very few of the treasures in the collection include:

References

  • Eisei Bunko Museum pamphlet available on-site.
  • General overview pamphlet, Kumamoto Prefectural Museum of Art.
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