A Millennium's Historical Picture Scroll Colors KyotoFestival of Ages22 October 2015 - Sightseeing/Events
One of Kyoto's three major festivals, "Jidai Matsuri," or Festival of Ages, was held in Kyoto City on October 22. The approximately two-kilometer-long procession, with about 2,000 participants, retroactively reenacted the changes in historical costumes over the approximately 1,000 year period of when Kyoto was the capital. Visitors were fascinated by the magnificent scroll of history.
The Festival of Ages was inaugurated in 1895 in celebration of the 1,100th anniversary of the "Heian Sento," or relocation of the ancient capital to Kyoto in the Heian Period, and the foundation of Heian Jingu Shrine in Sakyo Ward, Kyoto.
The "Jidai Gyoretsu" procession departed from the Kenrei-mon Gate of the Kyoto Imperial Palace at noon. The lead procession of loyalists of the Meiji Restoration waved a banner of the Imperial forces and advanced with the airy sound of flutes and drums. It was followed by a procession of patriots dressed up Kogoro Katsura and Genzui Kusaka who were active at the end of the Edo Period, a "Daimyo Gyoretsu," or feudal lords' procession, and a procession of women wearing gorgeous costumes from the Edo Period. Graceful and valiant costumes for court nobles and feudal lords decorated the streets of the ancient capital. Women's costumes, such as Shirakawame, Oharame and Katsurame, or women peddlers from Shirakawa, Ohara and Katsura, were also recreated.
The "Shinko-retsu" procession, consisting mainly of portable shrines in which the spirits of Emperor Kammu, who is an enshrined deity of the Heian Jingu Shrine and the one who transferred the ancient capital to Heian-kyo, and Emperor Komei, who ascended the throne just before moving the capital to Tokyo, ride respectively, held the final place in the line. The procession returned to the Heian Jingu Shrine at around 3:50 p.m.(translated by Galileo, Inc.)