Hodarakujijō was a fortified residence dating to the Muromachi period, presumed to have belonged to the Ohhara Clan. From historical documents it is known that Hodarakujijō was abandoned upon the demand of Oda Nobunaga after his invasion of Kōka (1585). The compound was abandoned when the Ohhara Clan left the area.
Hodarakujijō was a half chō in size, or about 50m on each side, arranged in a basic square layout. The surrounding earthen ramparts were more than 2.5m tall. Northern segments of dorui were lost in 1995 when a firehouse was built. The entrance to the bailey space now in the east is a modern excavation as the castle's entrance was originally southwestern orientated.
Hodarakuji Castle is named for Hodaraku Temple, which is to be found at the castle site today. A community center is also here. Unlike the larger, better preserved Ohharajō nearby, Hodarakujijō is not closed to the public, so I was able to look all around it. It is a basic square in layout, with remains of dorui (earth-piled ramparts) ringing it. If the fort formerly had a moat then it has now been filled in, and there's just grass around parts of it instead. It's possible that this moat has been excavated and refilled in modern times. The mountain name of the temple (all temples have an honourific mountain attached to them even if they're on flatland) is Beffu, the same as another castle site located nearby, of which I found even less remains. The remains of Ichibajin'yamajō are located less than 100m away, of which nearly nothing remains.
Nearby sites: Ohhara Castle, Kouka Beffu Castle, Kouka Ichibajin'yama Castle.
|English Name||Hodarakuji Castle|
|Year Founded||Muromachi Period|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Access||Kouka Station (JR Kusatsu Line); 10 minute walk|
|Visitor Information||24/7 free|
|Time Required||15 minutes|
|Location||Koka, Shiga Prefecture|
|Coordinates||34° 54' 13.46" N, 136° 12' 33.91" E|
|Added to Jcastle||2019|
|Admin Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|
|Friends of JCastle|
|Oshiro Tabi Nikki|
|Shiga no Shiro-ato / Yakata-ato|
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