One of the most popular tourist sites in Hagi is the Shoin Shrine enshrining Yoshida Shoin (1830-1859). He was a local samurai who was executed in 1859 for his part in an asassination plot against Ii Naosuke - a government official - but is mostly known for being a teacher of many of the leading members of the new Meiji government, which took over power from the Tokugawa regime in 1868.
The shrine was established in 1890 and moved to its present location in 1955. The original shrine is just to the north of the present shrine and it now enshrines the students of Yoshida Shoin.
Within the grounds of the shrine is his old classroom where he taught the likes of Ito Hirobumi (1841-1909), Japan's first Prime Minister.
Also within the grounds is a small museum on Yoshida that mostly consists of life-size tableau depicting events from his short and dramatic life.
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Saturday, March 20, 2010