Yaese gusuku

From SamuraiWiki
Jump to navigationJump to search
  • Type: Okinawan gusuku
  • Status: Ruins
  • Other Names: Eiji gusuku
  • Japanese: 八重瀬城 (Yaese gusuku)

Yaese gusuku is an Okinawan gusuku-style fortress located in the town of Yaese, in the Shimajiri district of southern Okinawa. It stood about 160 meters above sea level, mid-way up the northern slope of Mt. Yaese.

The fortress is composed of a chief enclosure, in this case, in the lowest part of the complex, and two outer enclosures, called kuraate, located higher up. Sections of the nozura-zumi (uncut, piled stone) walls still stand, especially on the southern and eastern sides of the site. The site is somewhat more open to the west, and it is believed that watchtowers would have stood here, allowing a view of Shuri, the Kerama Islands, and other parts of the castle's own Shimajiri district.

The site also includes a number of sacred spaces and shrines to native Okinawan spirits or deities, including five utaki dedicated to Nirai kanai, a creator deity from the sea, and a number dedicated to spirits such as the fire god of Yaese gusuku, the fire god of Nakajiku, and the Gushiku gaa.

Excavations have revealed a variety of Chinese objects, including coins, pottery, and iron nails, which have been found as well at many other gusuku sites.


  • Kitahara Shûichi. A Journey to the Ryukyu Gusuku 琉球城紀行。 Naha: Miura Creative, 2003. p79.