The windows are among the most beautiful elements in the Japanese traditional architecture. While visiting Japan, you will certainly admire the marumado circular windows or the katomado tulip-shaped windows, as those photographed here at Ryogen-in, Kyoto.
Originally appeared in the architecture of the Zen temples, the katomado windows were later borrowed by Shinto shrines, samurai residences or even castles. The katomado name has an interesting story: mado means “window", and originally kato meant “fire light", because the shape resembled a flickering flame, so the name meant “fire light window". However, it was considered that fire isn’t a good omen for a wooden building, so the kanji used to write kato was changed, and the new meaning is “flower window"…
Yesterday’s Japan Photo: