Tokyobling's Blog

Jidai Matsuri Men – Kyoto

Posted in Japanese Traditions, People, Places by tokyobling on May 21, 2014

I took these photos of some of the many young and older men taking part in the grand Jidai Matsuri, or festival of the ages, in Kyoto a couple of years ago. From the flute playing young soldiers of the Meiji restoration to nobles of the Heian era, they all represents different eras of the long history of Kyoto.

To explain all the costumes and their significance would take the better part of a month of blog posts. During the festival I was surprised at a number of volunteers who were selling official festival guide books that looked more like magazines, so I am not alone in finding the subject somewhat complicated. Please enjoy the photos at least, even without any accompanying explanations!

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14 Responses

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  1. Buri-chan said, on May 21, 2014 at 5:11 am

    Great photos! I always wished I could have gone to this because I love seeing historical costumes so much, but photos can be just as good.

    Like

  2. Anas Azhar said, on May 21, 2014 at 6:31 am

    historical … 🙂

    Like

  3. Dina Farmer said, on May 21, 2014 at 7:15 am

    How amazing!

    Like

  4. pk1154 said, on May 21, 2014 at 1:14 pm

    I bet those old dudes can work magic with those bows. Called in E to look at this set!

    Like

  5. Nature on the Edge said, on May 21, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    Such pageantry and fascinating garb! The hats; shoes; implements…. what a procession.

    Like

    • tokyobling said, on June 5, 2014 at 2:46 am

      Thank you for the comment! Yes indeed, and there are a few of these all over the country, every year…!

      Like

  6. backpackerlee said, on May 22, 2014 at 12:57 pm

    Excellent photos. One of the best places in Kyoto and ALL of Asia for me was the Fushimi Inari Shrine! Incredible! http://backpackerlee.wordpress.com/2014/04/22/fushimi-inari-the-keys-to-the-mountain/

    Like

    • tokyobling said, on June 5, 2014 at 2:46 am

      Indeed that is a great place to visit. Thank you for the kind comment! (^-^)/

      Like

  7. Andrzej Wisniewski said, on May 22, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    Superb photos! What costumes…! How often is this festival?

    Like

  8. C said, on May 22, 2014 at 8:17 pm

    The last photo reminds me of a proud Native or South American warrior! The more things seem different, the more they really are the same.

    Like

  9. Bonnie said, on July 18, 2016 at 8:14 pm

    I recognized some of the same participants that I photographed in 2012. It was funny, I found myself only interested in the people who were not wearing glasses (too modern). If you do this again, try going to the Imperial Palace at 9:30 when they are setting up, rathering than watching the parade come past you. The portraits I got were wonderful and everyone is in a great mood.

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