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A statue of Matsuo Basho at Chusonji temple, Hiraizumi, Japan, 28 August 2008. The poet visited Hiraizumi during the writing of the Narrow Road to the Deep North. Hiraizumi in Northern Japan flourished as the seat of the Oshu Fujiwara clan for around 100 years from the end of the 12th century. The city was built to be an earthly recreation of the Buddhist "Pure Land" or Nirvana.