Kawarano-in (河原院)

Kawarano-in, the residence of MINAMOTO no Toru, was located along Rokujo-dori Street, Kyoto.

The premises occupied a vast area of approx. 436meters (or approx. 873meters according to one theory) that were surrounded by Rokujo-oji Street on the south side, by Rokujo Bomon-koji Street on the north side, by Higashi Kyogoku-oji Street on the east side and by Madeno-koji Street on the west side, and it is said that he built a garden imitating a landscape of Shiogama, Mutsu Province, and enjoyed making salt with a baking method from 30-koku (approx. 180 litters/koku) seawater brought from Amagasaki every month. After Toru died, the place was inherited by MINAMOTO no Noboru, his son, and Noboru presented it to the Emperor Uda, and it become Sento Imperial Palace. Later, it was given to Ninko, the third son of Toru and it became a temple, but, when building Gidarin-ji Temple, Ninko moved the honzon (main statue of Buddha) of Kawarano-in to the temple; After that Kawarano-in caught fire several times and was ruined. Shosei-en Garden was constructed at the site during the Edo period.

According to "Kakaisho," a commentary on "The Tale of Genji," Kawarano-in was the model of the 'Rokujo-in' residence of Hikaru GENJI.
It is said that Kawarano-in was also the model of a residence where Hikaru GENJI stayed with Yugao overnight

A stone monument of "Kawarano-in-ato" (former Kawarano-in site) is located at Gojo Sagaru, Kiyamachi-dori, Shimogyo Ward. The area around it is the site of 'Magaki no Mori' (literally, woods of fences) generated over 'Magaki no Shima' (literally, an island of fences), an island in the garden of Kawarano-in, which was buried due to a flood of the Kamo-gawa River, and it is said that the aged hackberry is the last remaining tree of the woods, but the location of the stone monument is just outside the estimated site of Kawarano-in.

Also well know is a ghost of Toru that appeared in Kawarano-in, with several such stories described, for example, in the "Konjaku Monogatarishu" (a set of story books compiled during the Heian period).

"Konjaku Monogatarishu" 27-2: While the Retired Emperor Uda stayed at Kawarano-in, a ghost of Toru appeared and said that 'this is my residence,' but after the Retired Emperor thundered out that 'Your son presented it to me,' the ghost never appeared again.

"Godansho" (another story book from ancient days): When the Retired Emperor Uda stayed with Kyogoku no Miyasundokoro overnight, the ghost of Toru appeared and said that 'I want Miyasundokoro.'
The Retired Emperor refused the request, but Miyasundokoro fell senseless as if she died. The Retired Emperor immediately returned to the palace, made priest pray, and then Miyasundokoro was restored to her senses.

"Shimeisho" (a commentary on The Tale of Genji): When the Retired Emperor Uda and Miyasundokoro were viewing the moon at Kawarano-in, somebody tried to pull Miyasundokoro into the building. When the Retired Emperor asked 'who is it?,' there was an answer; 'it is Toru,' and then Miyasundokoro was released, but had already died.

"Konjaku Monogatarishu" 27-17: A husband and his wife, who visited Kyoto from the eastern part of Japan, tried to stay overnight in Kawarano-in which was already in ruins, and while the husband was tethering his horse, his wife was caught with hands thrust out of the building. The husband tried to open the door, but it refused to open, being firmly closed. When entering the building after breaking the door down, he found his wife's dead body hung with all of her blood completely drained.

[Original Japanese]