RYOKAN KYOTO

GION FESTIVAL

  GION FESTIVAL  

In 869, Japan was struck with a terrible epidemic of plague. The Seiwa emperor, residing in the Kyoto imperial palace, then sent his messengers to the Gion shrine (the present Yasaka shrine) in order to placate the divine wrath of Susano, the solar goddess Amaterasu's brother.
In offering to Gozu Tenno, a shinto divinity (also called Gion) supposed to take care of the good health of her faithfuls, he also ordered his servants to plant in the imperial garden, the 7th day of the 6th month of the lunar calendar, 66 decorated halberds (hoko) representing the country's 66 provinces.


 

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