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Genkō Monument (げんこうきねんひ)

Area
Iki
Category
History&Culture
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This statue was erected in honor of Shōni Suketoki, a young warrior who died fighting the fleet of the Mongolian army that landed on Iki as part of its invasion of Japan in 1281. It depicts Suketoki’s bravery in the midst of fierce combat during this national crisis, as he faced the brunt of the attack to galvanize the other youths who followed him into battle to protect their land. 
This memorial represents the heightened awareness of those who live through the dawn of a new era as well as the hope that younger generations would enjoy times of peace.

Learn more via audio guide

Information

Address 長崎県壱岐市
TEL 0920-48-1130(Iki City Tourism Division)
Parking Parking lot available
Access 1 minutes on foot from Ashibe Port

In 1274, a Mongol army of approximately 30,000 soldiers attacked the islands of Tsushima and Iki and landed at Hakata. Then a severe storm suddenly arose, causing the Mongolians to lose countless troops and forcing them to retreat.
Japan anticipated that the Mongol army would strike again, so stone forts were constructed along Hakata Bay on the northern shore of Kyushu Island, and numerous warriors were mobilized to strengthen the defense of the coastline.
The Mongols indeed returned to Hakata Bay, this time in 1281 with what was said to be a massive force of 140,000 men. But the Japanese army fought back intensely and kept the invaders from landing again. About 2 months later, yet another destructive storm struck, and the enemy fleet was routed.
These 2 Mongol invasions are called Genkō in Japanese. In the second attack, Shōni Suketoki, the Iki commander who was just 19 years old, fought bravely and fiercely to his death on this island. To this day, Suketoki is venerated as the island’s patron deity at Iki Shrine in the Seto neighborhood of Ashibe Town.

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