tokonoma


to·ko·no·ma

noun \ˌtō-kə-ˈnō-mə\

Definition of TOKONOMA

:  a niche or alcove in the wall of a Japanese house for the display of a decorative object

Origin of TOKONOMA

Japanese
First Known Use: 1871

tokonoma

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In a Japanese room, an alcove with a low platform, used for the display of a flower arrangement and hanging scroll or other art objects. A feature of the shoin-zukuri style, the tokonoma is the focal point and spiritual centre of the interior of almost every traditional Japanese house. It finds its origins in the private altar space of the Zen Buddhist monk, which contained a hanging Buddhist scroll and a narrow wooden table with an incense burner and votive candles.

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