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Stepping stones, Tobi-ishi (飛石) in Japanese, are an essential element of the traditional Japanese garden. In contrast to regular garden paths, walking on stepping stones requires more concentration. This has a positive influence on the way in which people experience the garden. Additionally, people cannot walk side by side on a path of stepping stones, eliminating potential distractions. In a tea garden, this also makes sure that people do not arrive at the exact same time at the tea house before the start of the tea ceremony.
Stepping stone paths were introduced by Sen no Rikyū, a very famous historical figure who is regarded as the founder of the tea ceremony. The original idea behind stepping stones was to keep the Zōri, traditional Japanese sandals, clean and dry when walking through the garden.
Kutsunugi-ishi (沓脱石) are wide Japanese stepping stones used to step up from the garden onto a veranda. In ancient Japan, they were often placed in tea gardens so visitors could enter the tea house by stepping up from the garden. Before entering Japanese buildings, especially traditional houses, it is an important custom to remove ones shoes. This can be done while standing on the Kutsunugi-ishi, which in Japanese means: Rock on which shoes are taken off.
This wonderful unique stone type is known as Kikkou Seki (亀甲石), and is a very famous part of the traditional Japanese garden. They are well-known for their unique patterns of crannies seen on the surface resembling the shell of a turtle. The name Kikkou is based on this, being the Japanese word for turtle shell.
• Origin: Kyoto, Kyoto prefecture, Japan
• Material: Kurama Stone (鞍馬石)
EUR: 2850.00 ≈ EUR: 2850.00