Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Seijin no Hi - Coming of Age Day

This year, January 9th was a holiday in Japan, the 'Coming of Age' day. 成人の日 (Seijin no Hi) is held annually on the 2nd Monday of January. This celebration has been dated back to 714AD, when a prince would dress up in new robes and have a new hairstyle to mark his passage into adulthood and finally in 1948 it was established as national holiday. 

Those who will turn 20 between April 2nd and April 1st will gather in the morning at local town offices and the government officials will give speeches to the new adults. To help them into their new role of adulthood. 

The woman wear furisode, which is like the kimono but has long arms that drape down. Since it is expensive to buy these gowns they will borrow from relatives or rent them from special shops where they can get dressed up and get their hair down specially for the festivals. Men wear the traditional dark kimono dress with hakama, but now a days it's been more popular to wear western suits and ties. After the ceremony the new adults go out to celebrate at parties or go out drinking.  

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