serp2000 (41692) 2015-05-27 04:41:30Kiyomizudera is best known for its wooden stage that juts out from its main hall, 13 meters above the hillside below. The stage affords visitors a nice view of the numerous cherry and maple trees below that erupt in a sea of color in spring and fall, as well as of the city of Kyoto in the distance. The main hall, which together with the stage was built without the use of nails, houses the temple's primary object of worship, a small statue of the eleven faced, thousand armed Kannon.
serp2000 (41692) 2015-05-10 12:41:56The houses are large, with three to four stories encompassed between the low eaves, and historically intended to house large extended families and a highly efficient space for a variety of industries. The densely forested mountains of the region still occupy 96% of all land in the area, and prior to the introduction of heavy earth-moving machinery, the narrow bands of flat lands running the length of the river valley limited the area available for agriculture and homestead development. The upper storeys of the gasshō houses were usually set aside for sericulture, while the areas below the first (ground) floor were often used for the production of nitre, one of the raw materials needed for the production of gunpowder.
serp2000 (41692) 2014-12-04 06:34:27During early Roman times, Styria was inhabited by Celtic tribes. After its conquest by the Romans, the eastern part of what is now Styria was part of Pannonia, while the western one was included in Noricum. During the Barbarian invasions, it was conquered or crossed by the Visigoths, the Huns, the Ostrogoths, the Rugii, the Lombards, the Franks and the Avars. In 595 the latter were defeated by the Slavs, who thenceforth ruled it.
In 1180 Styria separated from the Duchy of Carinthia and became a Grand Duchy of its own; in 1192 it became part of Austria. After the hereditary subdivision of the latter, Styria formed the central part of Inner Austria. Styria developed culturally and economically under Archduke John between 1809 and 1859. In 1918, after World War I, it was divided into a northern section (forming what is the current Austrian state), and a southern one, called Lower Styria, inhabited mostly by ethnic Slovenians, and which was annexed to Yugoslavia, and later in Slovenia.