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お正月

お正月とは1年の最初の月のことですが、普通1日から7日までの松の内(正月の飾りを飾っている期間)または1日から3日までをこうよびます。

Shogatsu(New Year)
Although shogatsu literally means the first month of the year, it generally indicates matsuno uchi(January 1-7,during which New Year’s decorations are displayed) or first three days of January.

<お正月にまつわること>
■門松
年神様をお迎えするための目印として、新年に家の門や入り口の両側に立てるもの。門松は、松の枝を組み合わせて作った飾りに竹や梅がそえられたものです。松は長生きの象徴でもあります。
Kadomasu
A pair of decorations put at both sides of the gates or entrances of houses in order to summon the year got.Kadomatsu are decorations made with assembled pine branches enhanced by stems of bamboo and sprays of plum trees.Pine is used as a symbol of longevity.

■しめ飾り
しめ縄と同様に、お正月に家の入り口に飾るもので、魔除けの意味があります。わら、紙四手のほか、縁起のよい飾りがついています。正月が終わると門松などと一緒に神社へもっていき、焼いてもらいます。
Shimekazari
A decoration displayed at the entrances of houses during the New Year like shimenawa as a charm against evil spirits.Straw,kamishide and good luck charms are attached.When the New Year period ends, this Shimekazari , Kadomatsu and the othe decorations are taken to Shinto shrines and burned.

■しめ縄
正月に家の入り口にかけて、不浄なものの侵入を防ぐもの。
Shimenawa
A decoration put over the door of a house during New Year period to keep the evil out.

■鏡餅
大小の丸い餅を2つ重ね、神様のお供えするもの。昔、鏡は丸く、人の魂を映す神聖なものとされていたことに由来します。
Kagamimochi
A set of two rice cakes, one large and one small, stacked one on top of the other as an offering to the gods. In old times, all mirrors(kagami) were round and considered sacred objects that reflected one’s spirit.

■初日の出
神道では太陽を最も神聖なものであるとされていることから、新年最初の日の出を拝み、一年の健康と幸運を祈願します。
Hatsuhinode(the sunrise on New Year’s Day)
As the sun is considered to be the most sacred object in Shinto, people worship the sunrise on New Year’s Day to pray for health and happiness in the new year.

■初詣
新年になって初めて寺社にお参りし、その年の健康と幸運を願うもの。
Hatsumode
During the New Year period, people go for the first temple or shrine visit of the year to pray for health and happiness in the new year.

■初夢
正月2日の夜に見る夢。「一富士二鷹三なすび」というのがめでたいとされる夢の順番です。
Hatsuyume
Hatsuyume is the dream that occurs the night of New Year’s Day to the morning of the 2nd. A saying states that the best order for the dream’s subject matter is:”first,Mt. Fuji;second,hawks;third,eggplants.”
■お屠蘇
その年の邪気をはらい、長寿を祈願して年始に飲むお酒。
Toso
A special sake people drink on the New Year’s Day to prevent illness in the new year and pray for the longevity.

■お雑煮
雑煮は、餅や野菜を入れた汁で、新年を祝うためにお正月に欠かせない料理の1つです。関東地方の雑煮は四角い餅を入れたすまし汁仕立て、関西地方の雑煮は丸い餅を入れた味噌仕立てというのが一般的です。味付けや中に入れる具は、地方や家庭に寄って異なるのが雑煮の特徴です。
Zoni(Soup with rice cakes and vegetables)
Zoni is a soup with rice cakes(mochi) and vegetables and is an essential dish for celebrating the New Year. In the Kanto area, zoni is generally prepared as a clear soup with square kochi, while Kansai , it is made with bean paste and round mochi.
But the seasoning and othe ingredients are different according to each region and household.




枯山水

枯山水は、水を使わずに、砂で海や川を表し、岩で山や島、船、竜などを表現する庭園様式です。主に禅寺の庭にみられます。

Karesansui
Karesansui is the dry garden in which the oceans or rivers are represented by sand without using water. Rocks are used to symbolize mountains , islands, boats or dragons. Karesansui gardens are seen mainly in Zen temples.




畳は、日本在宅の床上に敷くもので、欧米で言えばじゅうたんのようなものに当たります。わらで作った厚床の上にい草などで織った畳表をつけたもので、一畳は約1.8×0.9m。畳の上は靴、スリッパなしで歩きます。

Tatami
Tatami are sturdy straw mats approximately 1.8×0.9 m in size and used for flooring in the traditional Japanese home, comparable to Western carpeting. They are made of thick layer of bundled straw covered with a woven rush covering, and shoes and slippers are removed before entering a tatami room.




漆器

漆器は、漆を塗った器のことです。日本の伝統工芸品で、英語ではJapanとよばれます。漆を塗ると、器に美しい光沢が生まれるだけでなく、腐食や湿気から器を守る働きもあります。

Shikki
Shikki are containers coated with lacquer. This is one of the most famous traditional crafts of Japan and is called “Japan” in English. In addition to giving a beautifus gloss, coating containers with lacquer protects them from corrosives and moisture.




浴衣

浴衣は湯上がりや夏季に着る木綿の着物で、裏地はありません。振り袖など礼装の着物に対し、浴衣は普段着です。夏祭りや花火大会、盆踊りなどでは浴衣姿の人も多くみられ、夏の風物詩の1つになっています。また、日本の多くの旅館やホテルに浴衣が用意されています。

Yukata(Informal cotton kimono)
Yukata are cotton kimono without lining, which are worn after taking a bath and in the summertime. In contrast to ceremonial kimono, like the long-sleeved kimono. yukata are ordinary, unassuming clothing. Lots of people in yukata are seen at summer festivals, fireworks displays, and the Bon Festival dance; yukata on such occasions constitute a poetic summer scene. In addition, yukata are set out in most inns and hotels.




書道

書道は毛筆と筆で文字を書く芸術で、精神的な深みや美しさが表されます。もともと中国から伝わったものですが、日本では表意文字の漢字に加え、日本で発明された表音文字の仮名を組み合わせて独特の文字芸術をつくりあげてきました。

Shodo
Shodo is the art of drawing characters with brush and India ink to express spiritual depth and beauty. Shodo originally came from China, but in Japan,Chinese characters(kanji) were combined with the Japanese syllabary(kana), devised in Japan, to create this unique character art.




香道

仏教伝来とともに香が中国から日本に伝えられました。はじめは仏前に用いられましたが、少しずつ香を独立して楽しむようになり、室町時代の中期には茶道とともに発展し、1つの独立した芸術としてその様式が確立しました。香道では、香木を炊いてその香りを観賞する、香の優劣を判定して遊ぶ、幾種類かの香を炊いて1つのテーマを表現する、などがあります。

Kodo (Incense ceremony)
Incense, along with Buddhism, was introduced into Japan from China(538). At first,it was used in front of Buddhist statues, but it gradually came to be enjoyed independently. In the middle of the Muromachi Period(1333-1573), it deceloped in association with the tea ceremony, and the style of using incense as an independent art was developed.
With Kodo there are several approaches. One can burn aromatic wood and appreciate the fragrance, play a game by judging the relative quality of two linds of incense, or express a theme common to the fragrances of several kinds of burning incense.




華道

華道は16世紀頃から盛んになった日本の伝統的な芸術の1つで、「生け花」とも呼ばれ、6世紀に仏教の僧が仏前に花を捧げたのがその起源だといわれています。自然の花を使って天、地、人の3要素をバランスよく表現するという考え方が基本となります。

Kado
Kodo is a traditional Japanese art that has flourished since the sixteenth century. Also called ikebana,its origin is said to date from the sixth century when Buddhist priests offered up flowers before Buddha.
Its fundamental concept is to express the three elements of heaven, earth, and mankind in a balanced composition, using natural flowers.




茶道

茶道は、16世紀頃千利休が大成しました。利休は禅の精神をとりいれ、簡素と静寂を旨とする日本独特の「わび」の心を重んじました。

Sado
Sado or cha no yu(tea ceremony)was perfected by Master Sen no Rikyu in the 16th century. It is based on the spirit of Zen anf focuses on pusuing the Japanese “wabi” aesthetic,a simple and calm state of mind.




神楽

神楽は神道の神に捧げる日本古来の神聖な演奏と舞。宮中で行われる神楽を「御神楽」、民間の神社などで行われるものを「里神楽」といいます。

Kagura
Kagura is Japanese indigenous sacred music and dance dedicated to the Shinto gods.Kagura performed in the Imperial Court is called “mikagura” and those performed mainly at shrines are called “satokagura”.