A map revealing some of the important places mentioned in the oaths is available via Google Earth online. In the center of the map, in blue, you can see the reference to the Saji family. The other names listed nearby are the residences of other families whose members signed the oaths. Handōji temple and Aburahi shrine are religions institutions referred to in the oath, while the Enryakuji temple, located on Mt. Hiei in Kyoto, is the inspiration for the invocations clauses of oath 1 and 3.

The invocation clauses of the 1556 and one of the 1569 Princeton documents are classified by scholars as Daishi kanjō kishōmon (大師勧請起請文), or “a kishōmon invoking the Buddhist master Saichō.” Saichō was the founder of the Tendai school in Japan and the temple of Enryakuji. The other 1569 Princeton kishōmon was sworn to the Reisha shrine, and is known as a Reisha jōgan kishōmon (霊社上巻起請文). Reisha jōgan kishōmon appeared in Ōmi province in the middle of the 16th century as this shrine’s invocation clauses were very popular in that region. What is interesting here is that in 1569, both Daishi kanjō and Reisha jōgan invocation clauses were required in two separate, but otherwise identical oaths, while for 1556 and 1563 oaths, only one invocation clause was thought to be necessary. The invocation clause of 1563 document is modeled after the 1232 Jōei code, a popular and influential law code crafted by officials of Japan’s first warrior government, the Kamakura bakufu (1185-1333).

Open in Google Earth