NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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2007/5/25


アイヌ 樹皮衣 Ainu Juhi-i Ainu Bark-Fiber Cloth

Jp En

Ainu bark-fiber is a woven cloth used for the traditional garments and costumes of the Ainu people of Hokkaido. These garments are some of the most representative and familiar forms of clothing worn by the Ainu, and are known as 'atoshi' in Ainu dialect.

Bark fiber used in this fabric is taken from the inner bark of the Manchurian elm, then woven on a loom. As cotton was more highly valued by the Ainu then, garments were considered to be more valuable when cotton was woven into cloth along with bark fiber.

Among the Ainu, the Hokkaido Ainu were the principal users of this fabric. It was worn for daily use, and was mass exported to the main island of Japan in the late 18th century due to its excellent durability and detailed weaving. Today, this fabric is still woven all over Hokkaido as a traditional handicraft.
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2006/11/27


城南宮 宮司 Jyouanguu guuji The High Priest at Jonangu Shrine

Jp En

Located in Fushimi Ward, Kyoto, Jonangu Shrine is known as “hou-yoke no Taisha” that means the grand shrine to purify the disastrous directions. The time of its establishment is unknown. It is said that when Emperor Kanmu relocated the capital to Kyoto, he built this shrine to guard the south part of the capital as well as urakimon (the southeast part or the opposite of the northwest that is called kimon, the ominous direction) of Toba Rikyu Palace. Since then people have worshipped the deities at this shrine as those who purify disastrous places. Even today a lot of people all over the country visit this shrine before they start a construction work or move to a new house. Not only one-day prayer, you can also ask the Grand Priest to offer a prayer in your stead to attain your desire for successive 7 days, 15 days, 1 month and so on. On the New Year’s Day, the ceremonies such as “Harae Kagura (kagura dance for purification)” and “Chouna Hajime (the start of taking a hand ax to the holy wood, praying for the safety in construction works of the year)” are held with solemnity.
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