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Generally symmetrical in form, the arrangements appeared in Japanese religious pictures of the 14thcentury.

It was the first attempt to represent natural scenery.

So, while these two branches both started in the Higashiyama period, rikka better represents the taste of that time, and nageirebana more reflects the taste of the Momoyama period.

For a long time the art had no meaning and was merely the placing in vases, without system, of the flowers to be used as temple offerings and before ancestral shrines.

The first flower arrangements worked out with a system were known as shin-no-hana, meaning "central flower arrangement".

Yoshimasa finally abdicated the office in order to devote his time to the fine arts.

It was he who said that flowers offered on all ceremonial occasions and placed as offerings before the gods should not be offered loosely, but should represent time and thought. It is to the celebrated painter Sōami, a contemporary and friend of Yoshimasa, who conceived the idea of representing the three elements of heaven, human, and earth, from which have grown the principles of the arrangements used today.

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