Hina Matsuri, Doll Festival

 

Today, March 3rd is Hina Matsuri, literally Doll Festival. This day can also be called Girls’ Day.

It is a tradition that dates back to the Heian Period (794 – 1185). On that day, little Japanese girls set up platforms on which they place dolls representing the Heian Imperial Court. It looks like this:

 

 

On the top platform, the Imperial couple can be found. Just below them, these are the three court ladies. Then, there is a third platform (not on the picture) with five musicians, and even more platform with various characters and objects, although, like you can see on the picture, nowadays, incomplete sets are common, most likely because people lack space for such large short term installations. In theory, they are also passed on from generation to generation, but it’s also obviously possible to buy some, although they’re not always cheap (I’m sure there are some at many different prices).

I’d like to tell you more about it, but as I’m discovering the whole thing today (I had heard about it before, but not in details) and I don’t have a daughter (yet), let’s wait for a future March 3rd for more details about Hina Matsuri if you don’t mind.

 

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