Sakai City
Myokoku-ji Temple's Cycad

Nationally Protected Natural Monument
Warring Period

Built in 1562, Myokokuji is a temple of the Nichiren sect of Buddhism. The cycad in the compound, thought to be 1100 years old, still thrives with about 120 branches. According to legend, this huge cycad, after being transplanted to Azuchi Castle at the request of Oda Nobunaga (1534-1582), then ruler of the country, made a strange noise every night as if it were crying for return to Sakai; it was therefore moved back to this temple. In 1924, it was designated as a nationally protected natural monument.
This temple is associated with the "Sakai-jiken"(contention) which occurred in 1868 (a French soldier was killed by soldiers of the Tosa clan). As punishment, the eleven clansmen involved in the incident were forced to commit harakiri in this temple. The incident was the theme of the novel "Sakai jiken," written by Mori Ogai, a great literary figure of the Meiji Period (1868-1912).

Tourist Information

Source: The Sakai municipal government

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