Shurijo Castle Park New Year’s 2010(Part II)

10:50 to 11:00 Part 2 “Chounuunufe”

This ritual is for people to vow their royalty to the King as well as the longevity of the King and the prosperity of the Ryukyu Kingdom. The attendants are the same as those in Part 1.  
 

Appearance of Sanshikan or Council of Three The highest-ranking aristocracy. The actual administrative superintendent of Ryukyu royal government.  

sanshikan, okinawa, kingdom of ryukyu

Appearance of Wakashu  Young boys who have yet to undergo the coming of age ceremony and are 14 or 15 years old.  They were male members of the nobility and served in the court as pageboys. The boys got dressed in kimono and put their hair up beautifully exactly the same way as ladies. 

 

wakasyu, ryukyu kingdom

All the officials line up in rows for their prescribed position. 

shuri castle festival, new year's event

The King and the Queen show themselves from their seats in the Karahafu room of the second floor of the State Hall.  (Sorry!  I was not in a good position to take photos of the King and the Queen.)

gard, okinawa castle, history of okinawa

 

All the officials vow their royalties to the King and make solemn obeisance to him three times.

king and quessn of okinawa

 

Sanshikan light incense three times.

sanshikan, japanese history, history of ryukyu kingdom

 

All the officials clap their hands in prayer toward the King, saying “Wan Sui!  Wan Sui! Wan Wan Sui!”

ceremony of new years, ryukyu kingdom, okinawa

All the officers leave the forecourt. 

naha okinawa japan, otori

11:25 to 11:50 Part 3 “Otori” 

This ritual is for the officials to thank their King and to pray for the longevity and the prosperity of the King and royal families.  The King and all the officials take turns savoring awamori, the Okinawan liquor.  

 

Wakashu pour awamori for the King and Sanshikan.

archetechure of japan, japanese ceremony

shuri castle shinsyunno utage

shinsyunno utage, naha okinawa

 

Awamori given by the King is offered to all the officials.  

okinawa new years ceremony

 

Otamasuki : “A pair of sake bottles with family crests, whose surface are decorated with tamasuki ornament of glass and ceramic beads joined together by thread.  About 30 cm tall.  In royal ceremonial occasions, otamasuki was offered to the altar.    

ceremony of okinawa

Awamori (amazake is used in this event.) is offered also to eight visitors.  Even if it is amazake sold in the supermarket, they would feel it as a really sacred, precious drink.  

 

In Shurijo Castle Park New Year’s Celebration 2009 (Part III), I would like to inform you of “Ryukyu Performing Arts Celebration.”  

 

* During the Ryukyu Kingdom era, the Queen didn’t take part in the New Year’s ceremony, today she also directs and performs the main event in order to add more splendor to the re-enactment.  

* On January 3, “The appearance of the King and the Queen” is held instead of “New Year’s Ceremony.”

If you missed our part 1, click here

Shuri Castle Park New Year's Ceremony 2010 Part I 

 

 

On the following site of Ryukyu Shimpo online news, you can enjoy movie to see how the ceremony went.  Please click the movie!

<http://ryukyushimpo.jp/news/storyid-155058-storytopic-1.html>

 

Kumiko Teruya is a profesional Japanese / English Tour Guide in Okinawa Japan 

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