Hina Matsuri (Girls’ Festival)

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March 3rd is Hina Matsuri (Girls’ Festival) in Japan. The traditional way to celebrate is for girls to set up these elaborate displays of dolls – the emperor and the empress are at the top, then the ladies in waiting, then the court musicians. Below there are two guards (with bows and arrows), and lots of traditional furnishings and accessories made of lacquer, including a tea ceremony stand with tiny bowls and even a tea whisk! At the bottom in the middle is a cart that would have been pulled by oxen.

If a family is rich then they might buy a set of hina dolls like this when their daughter is born. A set like this costs a fortune! Of course you can also buy smaller sets, or just single dolls.

These hina dolls are on display at the World Friendship Center in Hiroshima. So if you go to Hiroshima, you can go to see them.

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7 thoughts on “Hina Matsuri (Girls’ Festival)”

  1. I enjoyed your post and the sound of this lovely little ceremony. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Stanley, Boys’ Day is 5th May so I will definitely write about it 🙂

  2. Fascinating. The dolls are amazing. I didn’t know anything about this. I look forward to finding out about the boys’ day.

    1. I think they have official names for the type of doll (like ’empress’ ’emperor’, ‘first lady in waiting’, ‘flute player’) but I don’t think they have proper names. Maybe the little girls name them though 🙂

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