The Genk? B?rui (?, Genk? B?rui) was a defensive stone wall, 20 kilometres (12 mi) long, constructed along Hakata Bay in Japan in preparation for an attack by Mongol forces of the Yuan dynasty after the first attack of 1274.
The second attack of 1281 was thwarted by a typhoon, or kamikaze, and the Mongols were forced to withdraw. In the Edo period, some of the stones were reused for the construction of Fukuoka Castle, though Genk? B?rui has remained intact at several points along the Hakata Bay. It was originally called "Ishitsuiji" (). It was designated a national historic site on March 30, 1931.
The Mongol invasions Genk? () of Japan in 1274 and 1281 were major military efforts undertaken by Kublai Khan to conquer Japan. After the failure of the first invasion, the Kamakura shogunate initiated a series of projects in 1275 to prepare for the next invasion, which they felt was imminent.
In addition to improving the organization of the samurai of Kyushu, they ordered the construction of a large stone wall and other defensive structures at many potential landing points, including Hakata Bay. A defensive wall was planned and a tax was levied on the samurai, temples, and shrines, of 3.3 centimetres (1.3 in) of construction stone per rice field equivalent to one koku of rice. Construction began in March 1276. The planned date of completion for most of the wall was August of the same year, but the deadline differed depending on the strategic importance of given locations. Construction of the defense wall was made by various Kyushu provinces. These provinces continued maintenance on the wall until the early part of the Muromachi period, and by the latter half of the 14th century it had fallen into disrepair.
A part of Genk? B?rui was completed before the second invasion and prevented the enemy from landing immediately. The invaders were forced to anchor their ships at Shikanoshima Island. The battles occurred over several months between several thousand evenly-matched combatants. Takezaki Suenaga of Higo Province joined the battles and had artists draw scrolls concerning the Battle of K?an. This second attack of 1281 was finally thwarted by a typhoon, or kamikaze, and the Mongols were forced to withdraw.
Even later, the defense system was continued, and remained intact until 1332. In the Edo period, most of the stones were used for the construction of Fukuoka Castle. It was designated a national historic site on March 30, 1931.
At first, battle-ready soldiers were excluded from taxation, but this policy was soon discontinued and each province in Kyushu was taxed. The tax was usually one sun (3.3 cm) of the wall's length per 1 tan of rice field; the weapons were one shield, one flag and 20 arrows per 1 jo (3.314 yards) of stone wall. The tax was in the form of men who constructed the wall and in the form of the items (weapons), but later the tax was paid in money; 114 mon per one cho of rice field was typical. The taxation continued to the early part of the Muromachi Bakufu.
The Genk? B?rui was typically 2 metres (6 ft 7 in) high and 2 metres (6 ft 7 in) wide. The western end was in Imazu, Nishiku, Fukuoka and the eastern end in Kashii, Higashiku, Fukuoka, and about 20 kilometres (12 mi) long. It was packed with small stones inside, the seaside steep and the landside less steep. Shields and flags were placed on the Genko Borui and stakes were planted in the sea at irregular intervals.
In articles of the Fukuoka Nichi Nichi Shimbun ("Fukuoka Daily Newspaper") between June 12, 1913 and June 29, 1913, Heijiro Nakayama first used the words Genk? B?rui to mean "Mongolian Invasion defense structure" and he contrasted the Genk? B?rui from conventional stone defense by its high elevation and its design as a sand dike covered with stones; a structure which would effectively block an invasion attempt.
In 1958, human bones corresponding to 200 bodies were found in Imazu near the defensive structure, with ceramics considered to have been used by those convened for the construction of the wall.
|1968||Ikino Matsubara near Meinohama Station||Use of sandstone and granite confirmed.|
|1969||Imazu near Shimoyamato Station||Basalt and granite were used, differing by location.|
|1970||Nishijin near the center of Seinan University||Clay and sand in alternate layers.|
|1978||Meinohama||Stone fill; no clay. Width is 4 metres (13 ft).|
|1993||Near Hakozaki Shrine||Few stones uncovered during railway construction. Nothing more of value found.|
|1996||Momochi near Fukuoka Dome||Scattered stones were found and investigated during the construction of an apartment building.|
|1998||Ikino Matsubara near Meinohama Station||Rear consists of alternate sand and clay layers.|
|1998||Nishijin||Inside a Seinan University building, stone and sand fences apparent.[clarification needed]|
|2000||Near Hakozaki Shrine||Railway construction led to uncovering and investigation of more of the wall|