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Buddhist Tower in Form of a Pagoda (Hokyointo)

A work made of granite.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of granite.


13th century



About this artwork

The hokyointo is one of the earliest known types of stone pagoda in East Asia. Like other forms of pagoda, the design and function of this Buddhist monument originated in the ancient Indian memorial mounds (stupa), which were constructed to enshrine sacred remains or relics of the Buddha. In Japan distinct forms of multistoried stone and wood pagodas evolved to memorialize great Buddhist teachers and holy persons and to contain sacred texts (sutra). This hokyointo shows several early Kamakura period features, including the straight configuration of the petal-like projections, the Sanskrit characters carved on the vertical surfaces of the base, and the curved window frames, which are based on wood architecture.


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Arts of Asia


Buddhist Tower in Form of a Pagoda (Hokyointo)


Japan (Artist's nationality)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.





126 × 51 × 51 cm (49 5/8 × 20 1/8 × 20 1/8 in.)

Credit Line

Purchased with funds provided by The Rice Foundation

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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