Kôrakuen is a Japanese garden in Tokyo, originally founded by Tokugawa Yorifusa, daimyô of Mito han, as a private garden within the grounds of his Edo mansion. Construction began in 1629, but the garden was lost to a fire. It was completed by Yorifusa's son and successor, Tokugawa Mitsukuni, around 1669.
The garden's design shows strong Chinese influences, including a pond meant to resemble the famous West Lake of Hangzhou, and its name, meaning roughly "Garden of Later Pleasures", was chosen at the suggestion of Zhu Shunsui, a Chinese retainer of Mito, based on a proverb or famous quotation, "work first, pleasure later".
It is one of only seven places in Japan to be designated both a Special Designated Place of Historic Interest (特別史跡) and Special Designated Place of Scenic Beauty (特別名勝).
- "Kôrakuen." Digital Daijisen. Shogakukan, Inc.
- Marius Jansen, China in the Tokugawa World, Harvard University Press (1992), 80.