Artist:Utagawa Hiroshige (Ando)
Medium: Woodblock print
Dates:8th month of 1857
Dimensions: Sheet: 14 1/4 x 9 5/16 in. (36.2 x 23.7 cm) Image: 13 1/2 x 8 3/4 in. (34.3 x 22.2 cm)
Accession Number: 30.1478.66
Catalogue Description: A view of the delta area of eastern Edo, (what is now Oshima 2-chome), with the houses and lumberyards along the Tatekawa Canal in the distance. The building shown here was known as the Sazaido or Spiral Hall, after the "sazae," a shellfish with a spiral shell. The formal name of the structure was Sansodo or Three Circuit Hall and contained one hundred Kannon images, each representing a different temple on the three original circuits. The interior had inclined ramps and on each of the three floors the Kannon images, each about three and a half feet high, were arranged in niches. The Spiral Hall was part of a complex known as the Five Hundred Rakan Temple, founded in 1695 by a priest near Kyoto. The main hall of the temple (not shown here) was next to two buildings containing more than 500 images of "rakan" or disciples of the Buddha, rivaling the Spiral Hall in architectural complexity. The Spiral Hall, completed in 1780, was destroyed in the mid-1870's and the Kannon images dispersed. The Five Hundred Rakan statues were moved with the temple itself to a new location in Meguro in 1908, where more than half of them survive today.