By: Conrad, Austin, and Blair

The Torii is an arch showing the entrance to a holy area, or a shrine. Shrines may have multiple Torii. When they do, the largest Torii is called the first Torii. The First Torii is the overall entry the region of the shrine or Holy area. Toriis can also be used to signify the increasing holiness of a shrine as one approaches the main sanctuary. Two vertical beams hold up a horizontal beam, called a Kasagi that extends past the horizontal beams on either side. Under the Kasagi, there is a tie beam that holds the uprights together called a Nuki.

The floating Torii is the entry the Itsukushima Shrine. Built on the island of Mijahama in the Hiroshima prefecture in Japan, the shrine is built to the Shinto diety of of the seas and storms and the brother of the great sun deity. It is one of the most famed in Japan. The island istself was considered sacred, so commoners were not allowed to set foot on it. The gate was set out like a peir over the water, so it apeared to be floating. The shrine was built in much the same manner. In this way, commoners wouldn't have to set foot on the holy island.