"...any being whatsoever which possesses some eminent quality out of the ordinary, and is awe-inspiring, is called Kami.”
Tōkyō-to, Minato-ku, Atago 1-5-3 東京都港区愛宕１丁目５−3 October 1, 2021
From Merged Shrines
Yamato Takeru-Mikoto 日本武尊
Ebisu Daikoku-Sha 恵比寿大黒社
Fukuju Inari Jinja 福寿稲荷神社
Tarōbō Jinja 太郎坊神社
Annual Festival: September 24
The following is taken from the shrine`s home page (Japanese only), which is a little short on history but has a section entitled “Trivia,” which tells an interesting story.
The shrine sits atop the 25.7m high Mt. Atago (愛宕山), the highest natural hill in Tokyo’s 23 wards. There is a higher hill in Shinjuku-ward, the 44.6 m high Hakone-yama(箱根山), but it is man-made.
The staircase leading up from the main torii to the no.1 torii has 86 steps, not such a high number, but as it is at an angle of 40˚ it is very steep. According to an account in a well-known story book of the time, the Kaneisanba Jutsu (寛永三馬術), the third Tokugawa Shogun, Iemitsu, was passing in front of Atago Jinja on his return from Zoji-ji, a Tokugawa family temple, one day at the height of the plum blossom season in 1634. When he saw the plums at the peak of Atago-yama he barked out an order to no one in particular to ride up the staircase and bring back some of the blossoms. Aware of just how dangerous it was to ride a horse up and down such a steep staircase his retainers were very reluctant to do so. Seeing this Iemitsu was growing more and more angry, but just before
he was about to explode it was pointed out to him that a certain Magaki Heikuro (曲垣平九郎), a retainer of the Marugame domain (丸亀藩) in what is now Shikoku, had begun the ascent. A short while later he returned and presented Iemitsu with the plum blossoms he wanted, a service which led Iemitsu to describe him as the greatest horseman in Japan, and for the staircase to become known as the “stone steps to success” (出世の石段). As with many jinja, there are two staircases leading up from the main jinja to the haiden, a direct, steeper one, and an indirect less steep one. The direct one is referred to as the Otokozaka (男坂, lit. "male slope"), the indirect one as the Onnazaka (女坂, female slope).
And one thing I haven't seen in any other shrine, a foreign currency-specific donation box.
And so to the history. In 1603, when the Tokugawa Shōgunate was establishing itself in Edo, the shrine was set up on the orders of Tokugawa Ieyasu to enshrine Homusubi Mikoto (火産霊命) the Kami of Fire, also known as Kagatsuchi Kami, and thereafter it continued to receive Tokugawa support. Despite the enshrined kami the shrine was completely destroyed by fire during the Edo Period, and it was not rebuilt until October 1877. Damage was incurred during the Great Kantō Earthquake of 1923 and after the US bombings of May 24, 1945 virtually nothing was left of the shrine except the in-ground Tarōbō Jinja. Reconstruction was completed in September 1958.
(Click on images to expand them)
The Otokozaka to the left, the Onnazaka to the right