Matsuyama, Hometown of Haiku


The origin of haiku in Matsuyama started in 1674 when Lord Matsudaira Sadanao governed. Early haiku poets Sadanao and Kikaku were both influenced by the teachings of Matsuo Basho (1644-1694) who was credited in creating Japanese haiku. In 1880 Japan’s first haiku monthly was established by with Masaoka Shiki maternal grandfather as one the editors. In the 1890’s Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902) created a new haiku style and new standards for waka (5-7-5 syllable verse). Other Matsuyama haiku poets such as Takahama Kiyoshi, Kawahigashi Kekigodo, Naito Meisetsu, Yanagihara Kyokudo, and Ishida Hakyo followed the Shiki legacy. This laid the basis for establishing Matsuyama as the center for haiku.

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