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Gion matsuri Schedule 2020 altered due to COVID-19

Purification of water for rituals (神用水清祓式), 10th July

神用水清祓式2016神用水清祓式2016

Shinto priests of Yasaka shrine head for the river Kamo by way of Chugenji temple. On the Shijo bridge, they draw the water with traditional buckets. The water is called Shinyo-sui (Water for Kami) . Priests bring the water to the altar on the river bank and purify it with their prayers. In the evening, portable shrine is purified with it.

神用水清祓式2016神用水清祓式2016

神用水清祓式2016神用水清祓式2016

Shinto priests purify water to wash a Mikoshi. They draw water with bucket on the Shijo bridge. The water was put into small wooden tubs and the priests take anything evil from the water.

Reception with paper lantern (お迎え提灯), 10th July

General info.

お迎え提灯

About 350 persons march around the area of ancient Kyoto city and prepare for the portable shrines.

Umaosa 馬長

馬長馬長

In ancient times, emprors and aristcrats enjoyed to see Gion Goryo-e with Umaosa.

Umaosa is a child on horse back. Before Yamaboko was invented, it is the most popular thing in Gion matsuri.

Sagimai dance performance 鷺舞(さぎまい)/鷺踊

As described before, an artist give birth to Sagimai as a developed form of Sagi Odori.

Purification of portable shrine (神輿洗式), 10th July

神輿洗式神輿洗式

Mikoshi, a portable shrine heads for the Shijo bridge. Gion matsuri festival has 3 mikoshis and one of them, “Nakagoza” is purified on the Shijo bridge. It is purified there with the water the priests draw in the morning. After the torches, the portable shrine moves toward the bridge.

神輿洗式の松明

First of all, huge torches depart from Yasaka shrine. They make their way to Shijo bridge purifying the road where the portable shrine goes.

八坂神社の白朮祭

These torches are lit up with Okerabi (朮火). Okerabi is fire and is made on 28th of December every year at Yasaka shrine. The fire is kept burning in main hall of the shrine and used in many rituals.

Okeramairi 2021 and Okerabi 2020of Yasaka shrine, Kyoto
On December 31st and January 1st, people have Okerabi at Yasaka shrine. Let us learn its history and the way to enjoy them!

神輿洗式の松明の炭

You may see the charcoal dropping from torches on the road. It saves you from bad luck.

神輿洗式

The portable shrine was purified with the water on the bridge. Mikoshi is decorated with many ornaments but “Nakagoza” on this occasion doesn’t have them. It is very rare to see “raw” mikoshi.

神輿洗式

After the purification, Nakagoza goes back to Yasaka shrine.

祇園祭の神輿祇園祭の神輿

東御座西御座

西御座祇園祭の神輿

On the return to the shrine, Nakagoza was ornamented right now. We can see fully dressed Mikoshis at Yasaka shrine for a week.

Building Yamahokos, (鉾建て) 10th July

Building of Yamaboko floats starts.

11日

Iwatoyama

12日

Hosoyama, Yamabusiyama

13日

Aburatenjinyama, Asikariyama, Araretenjinyama, Kakyoyama, Toroyama, Uredeyama, Tokusayama, Hakugayama, Hakurakutenyama

14日

Mososyama

Hikizome, (曳初め) 12th July

After the Yamahoko-building, they have test-runs. On this occasion, anyone can trail Yamohokos. (I trailed Kikusui-hoko and Naginata-hoko actually!)

Iki-Chigos of Nginata boko pay a visit to Yasaka shrine. 13th July

長刀鉾稚児社参

Iki-Chigo (生稚児) is a boy considered and treated as a messenger of Kami (The center of the boys in the picture above.The boys of the both sides are kamuros.) He ride on the Naginatahoko on the day of Yamaboko float parade. On the day, there is a rope which divides sacred and secular world. He cut off the rope and the parade starts.

In the days of old, many Hokos have Chigo but only Nginataboko has Chigo these days. Other Hokos have Chigo figurine instead.

This visit is called Okrai morai because the shrine give him the same ranking as the feudal road.

Kuze Komagata chigos pay a visit to Yasaka shrine. (久世駒形稚児社参) 13th July

久世駒形稚児社参

We have another Chigos. These boys called Kuze-Komagata chigo (久世駒形稚児). On the day of Mikoshi parade. They are treated as Kami himeself because they has Goshintai (An object which Kami descends to ) of Ayato Kuninaka shirine (綾戸國中神社).

Kikusuiboko Chakai 菊水鉾茶会 13th~16th

菊水鉾茶会菊水鉾茶会皿

From 13th-16th, tea parties are held at Kikusuiboko Kaisyo. We can have a plate on which Wagashi is.



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