Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region

Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region (Japanese: 長崎と天草地方の潜伏キリシタン関連遺産) is a group of twelve sites in Nagasaki Prefecture and Kumamoto Prefecture relating to the history of Christianity in Japan. The Nagasaki churches are unique in the sense that each tells a story about the revival of Christianity after a long period of official suppression.[1]

Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Oura Tenshudo Temple, Nagasaki 2014.jpg
Ōura Cathedral
LocationNagasaki and Kumamoto, Japan
CriteriaCultural: iii
Reference1495
Inscription2018 (42nd session)
Area5,566.55 ha
Buffer zone12,252.52 ha
Coordinates32°44′03″N 129°52′13″E / 32.734106°N 129.870236°E / 32.734106; 129.870236
Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region is located in Japan
Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region
Location of Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region in Japan

Proposed jointly in 2007 for inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List under criteria ii, iii, iv, v, and vi, the submission named at the time Churches and Christian Sites in Nagasaki on the Tentative List, was recognized on January 30, 2018, as a World Heritage Site.

The initial nomination included 26 sites; however, after reconsideration the Nagasaki Prefecture reduced the monuments to 13 sites.[2] Twelve sites were recognized. Concerns over the Hidden Christian Sites in the Nagasaki Region have been widely discussed in the academic literature.[3]

Christianity in JapanEdit

Christianity arrived in Japan in 1549 with the Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier. Fanning out from Nagasaki, the new faith won many converts, including a number of daimyōs. Toyotomi Hideyoshi then Tokugawa Ieyasu persecuted those professing to be Christian. After the Shimabara Rebellion of 1637–1638, the official suppression of Christian practices was combined with a policy of national seclusion that lasted over two centuries. With the advent of Western powers and reopening of Japan in the 1850s and the reforms of the Meiji Restoration, missionary activity was renewed and a number of Hidden Christians resurfaced. Ōura Cathedral of 1864 is the first of the churches built in subsequent years.[4]

On 30 June 2018, thanking the UNESCO for the admission in the World Heritage List, the then Prime Minister Shinzo Abe publicly declared that the Hidden Christian Sites "convey the 'shape' of a faith that is unique to Japan and they are truly unparalleled worldwide as heritage of humankind."[5]

MonumentsEdit

Name Completion Date Location Construction type Comments Image
Ōura Cathedral and Related Facilities (大浦天主堂)[6] 1864 Nagasaki Brick National Treasure  
Kuroshima Church (黒島天主堂)[7] 1902 Sasebo Brick Important Cultural Property  
Former Gorin Church (旧五輪教会堂)[8] 1881 Gotō Wood Important Cultural Property  
Kashiragashima Church (頭ヶ島天主堂)[9] 1919 Shinkamigotō Stone Important Cultural Property  
Tabira Church (田平天主堂)[10] 1917/8 Hirado Brick No Entry  
Shitsu Church (出津教会) 1882 Nagasaki Brick  
Ōno Church (大野教会堂)[11] 1893 Nagasaki Stone Important Cultural Property  
Former Nokubi Church and related remains (旧野首教会) 1908 Ojika Brick  
Egami Church (江上天主堂)[12] 1917/8 Gotō Wood Important Cultural Property  
Hara Castle remains (原城跡)[13] Minamishimabara Historic Site  
Hinoe Castle remains (日野江城跡)[14] Minamishimabara Not Entry  
Hirado Island’s sacred places and villages (平戸島の聖地と集落) Hirado, Nagasaki Important Cultural Landscape  
Sakitsu Village in Amakusa (天草の﨑津集落) Amakusa, Kumamoto Important Cultural Landscape  

Previous Nominated MonumentsEdit

The list consists of sites previously nominated, but currently not in the list.

Name Completion Date Location Construction type Comments Image
Former Catholic Seminary (旧羅典神学校)[15] 1875 Nagasaki Timber-framed Brick Important Cultural Property  
Aosagaura Church (青砂ヶ浦天主堂)[16] 1910 Shinkamigotō Brick Important Cultural Property  
Mementos of Father Marc Marie de Rotz (ド・ロ神父遺跡) Nagasaki
Former Shitsu Aid Center (旧出津救助院)[17][18][19] Nagasaki Shelter, macaroni factory, and sardine processing area are all Important Cultural Properties  
Dōzaki Church (堂崎教会) 1907 Gotō Brick  
Hōki Church (宝亀教会) 1899 Hirado Wood/Brick  
Christian tombstone (吉利支丹墓碑)[20] Minamishimabara Historic Site  
Site of the Martyrdom of the 26 Saints of Japan (日本二十六聖人殉教地) 1864 Nagasaki  
Site of Saint Dominic Church (サント・ドミンゴ教会跡) 1609 Nagasaki  
Urakami Cathedral (浦上天主堂) 1959 Nagasaki Reinforced concrete  
Former Residence of Archbishop (旧大司教館) 1914 Nagasaki  
Kaminoshima Church (神ノ島教会) 1897 Nagasaki Brick  
Kurosaki Church (黒崎教会) 1920 Nagasaki Brick  
Himosashi Church (紐差教会) 1929 Hirado Reinforced concrete  
Ōso Church (大曾教会) 1916 Shinkamigotō Brick

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ "Churches and Christian Sites in Nagasaki". UNESCO. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Churches and Christian Sites in Nagasaki". UNESCO. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link); "Outline of Churches and Christian Sites". Nagasaki Prefecture. Retrieved 29 July 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ http://www.drustvo-antropologov.si/AN/PDF/2017_3/Anthropological_Notebooks_XIII_3_Delakorda.pdf
  4. ^ Finn, Dallas (1995). Meiji Revisited: The Sites of Victorian Japan. Weatherhill. pp. 12f. ISBN 0-8348-0288-0.
  5. ^ "Message by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the Inscription of "Hidden Christian Sites in Nagasaki and the Amakusa Region" on UNESCO's World Heritage List". June 30, 2018. Retrieved August 29, 2020.
  6. ^ "大浦天主堂 (Ōura Cathedral) ID 3522". Database of National Cultural Properties, Agency for Cultural Affairs. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ "黒島天主堂 (Kuroshima Church) ID 3541". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "旧五輪教会堂 (Former Gorin Church) ID 3543". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ "頭ヶ島天主堂 (Kashiragashima Church) ID 3415". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^ "田平天主堂 (Tabira Church) ID 3844". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  11. ^ "大野教会堂 (Ōno Church) ID 4285". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^ "江上天主堂 (Egami Church) ID 4286". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ "原城跡 (Site of Hara Castle) ID 2754". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  14. ^ "日野江城跡 (Site of Hinoe Castle) ID 2783". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  15. ^ "旧羅典神学校 (Former Catholic Seminary) ID 3523". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^ "青砂ヶ浦天主堂 (Aosagaura Church) ID 3417". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  17. ^ "旧出津救助院 (Former Shitsu Aid Center) ID 3841". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  18. ^ "旧出津救助院 (Former Shitsu Aid Center) ID 3842". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  19. ^ "旧出津救助院 (Former Shitsu Aid Center) ID 3843". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  20. ^ "吉利支丹墓碑 (Christian tombstone) ID 2763". Database of National Cultural Properties. Retrieved 21 Sep 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit