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Choumeiji is the temple neighboring to the north of Kofukuji. Originally named Josenji (Eternal Spring Temple), the record says it was constructed in 1625, but the one who opened it is unknown.


In the Kanei era (1624-1644), the third shogun Tokugawa Iemitsu took a rest there because he had a sudden stomachache during falconry. After he drank water from the well in the precinct and took a medicine, he immediately fully restored from the pain. Iemitsu was so glad that he called the well Chomeimizu (Long Life Water), and named after that, the temple became called Chomeiji.


There are various stone monuments in the temple precinct.


Since it was known as a famous snow-viewing site during the Edo period, it has Matsuo Basho's monument with a poem about snow-viewing was; you can also find Jippensha Ikku's monument engraving his farewell "kyoka" poem and Ota Shokusanjin's kyoka poetry monument.

Please take a look at the tomb of Tachibana Moribe, a famous Japanese classical scholar in the Edo period, as well as the statue carving the upper body of Narushima Ryuhoku, who belonged to the Tokugawa shogunate and served as magistrate of foreign affairs and accounting vice president of treasury; he later became the chief editor of Choya News and wrote satire essays.

There had been a Kannon-do and a Basho-do (hall dedicated to Kannon Bosatsu and another dedicated to Mastuo Basho), but they were both destroyed by fire.


Sakura-mochi (a cherry blossom pink rice cake) is also very famous, sold near the temple by Yamamotoya, which has inherited the taste over two hundred years.



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Benzaiten, the only goddess of the Seven Gods of Fortune,tends to be worshiped in a waterside.

Chomeiji Benzaiten is regarded as an avatar of Chikubu Island Benzaiten in Lake Biwa.


Her origin was a Hindu goddess of rivers and water. After introduced to Japan, she has been worshiped as the goddess of speech and music, so is often portrayed carrying a Biwa

(Japanese traditional lute).


As she is a goddess of words, she has also become the goddess of literature, education and knowledge. As education and knowledge give wealth, she was started to thought as goddess of treasury, saving people from poverty; accordingly the kanji for "Zai" of Benzaiten has been replaced from the word that stands for "talent" to the word that is pronounced in the same way but means "treasury", and she has become one of the Seven Gods of Fortune. Her being a goddess of water, snakes are chosen as her divine messengers, and people visit her on a Snake Day based on the Japanese traditional "Twelve Earthly Branches" calendar system.

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