薬師寺   Click to listen highlighted text! 薬師寺


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Yakushi-ji is a Buddhist temple located in Nara, Japan, that is widely considered to be one of the most significant and well-preserved examples of ancient Japanese architecture. The temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and consists of several important buildings, including the East Pagoda, the Central Hall, and the West Pagoda.

The temple was founded in the 7th century by Emperor Tenmu, who built it to pray for the health of his wife, Empress Jito. Yakushi-ji was originally a relatively small temple, but it grew in size and importance over the centuries as it became associated with the powerful Fujiwara clan.

The East Pagoda is the oldest surviving wooden structure in Japan and dates back to the 8th century. It is a five-story pagoda that stands over 30 meters tall and is decorated with intricate carvings and sculptures. The Central Hall, which was rebuilt in the 1970s, houses a large statue of the Buddha Yakushi, who is believed to have healing powers.

The West Pagoda, which is also a five-story pagoda, was built in the 8th century and is slightly smaller than the East Pagoda. It is also decorated with elaborate carvings and sculptures and is considered to be one of the finest examples of Japanese Buddhist architecture.

Throughout its history, Yakushi-ji has faced numerous challenges, including fires, earthquakes, and wars. Many of the buildings have been rebuilt or restored over the centuries, but they have largely retained their original designs and architectural features.

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