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Hinamaturi – Japanese Doll Festival for Girls Posted by on Feb 28, 2015 in Culture

Many of the young girls in Japan are now looking forward to celebrate the Doll Festival (Hinamatsuri, ひなまつり、雛祭り)coming up next week, on March 3rd. Every year, on this day, parents along with their daughters celebrate their daughter’s happiness and health. It is a special day for a family with daughters, as they prepare for this day even a month ago.

One of the most important thing they prepare for this day is the special doll called, Hinaningyo, (ひなにんぎょう、雛人形). This is a doll only for March 3rd, Hinamatsuri.

Since the Edo period in 1600’s,  dolls such as above are displayed in imperial court costumes. The costumes symbolize the Heian Period (794-1192). Full scale display is usually, 7 tiers although it is common to only display the emperor and empress that you see on the top tier.

On the second tier, what you see are three ladies-in-waiting. They are called San-nin- Kanjo (さんにんかんじょ、3人官女).  On the third tier, you see the five male court musicians. They are called Go-nin Bayashi(ごにんばやし、五人囃子).

Ministers that are called, Sa-daijin & U-daijin (左大臣、右大臣) sit besides the food on the forth tier. On the fifth row, you see the 3 guards called Eji(えじ、衛士).

There days, there are many stypes of Hinaningyo(ひなにんぎょう、雛人形) out on the market. The one you see above is very traditional, full size, 7 tier display. However, there are many smaller versions of Hinaningyo’s such as the ones below.


“Kumamon Hina Dolls” by Japanexperterna.se is licensed under CC BY-SA on Flickr.com

This coming March 3rd, if you have a daughter(s) at home, you might want to celebrate the day with her as a special day just for girls. Even if you don’t have Hinaningyo’s like this to display, you can still celebrate by listening or singing the traditional Japanese Doll’s Festival Song!




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About the Author:keiko

Born and raised in Japan. She currently lives in U.S. with her husband and two kids.