Japan Foundation Day or National Foundation Day (in Japanese it is named “Kenkoku Kinen no hi”) is a national holiday in Japan celebrating the foundation of Japan. The Day is celebrated annually on the 11th of February to commemorate the formation of the nation. This day is referred to as Empire Day means the day recognizes the ascension of “Jimmu”- was the first emperor of Japan at Kashishara gu on 11th February 660 BC.
History of Japan Foundation Day
Basically, the origin of National Foundation Day falls on New year according to the traditional lunisolar calendar. It is also believed that on this day Emperor Jimmu took the throne and the Foundation of Japan is celebrated.
During the Meiji period, the government of Meiji Japan decided that this day is designated as a national holiday due to the modernization of Japan by Meiji Restoration.
According to the Gregorian calendar, the National Foundation Day of Japan falls on January 29 the date when the festival was originally celebrated. In original form, this day was also known as “Empire Day” (Kigensetsu). In 1873, the Japanese Government decided that this day will be shifted to the 11th of February in order to realize the importance of foundation day among the people. On this day in 1946, the model constitution of Japan was approved by General McArthur.
Celebrations of Foundation Day of Japan
There is not much fascinating about this day, as February 11th features very little celebrations these days. Until World War II, this day is celebrated with grand festivals including fireworks, parades, flag-raising ceremonies and many more. In 1966 National Foundation Day was re-established but the celebrations are not the same.
No ceremonies and grand parades are organized on National Foundation Day of Japan. Though some people can be seen waving the Japanese Flags. On this day the schools and offices will remain closed.
Note:- According to the survey of 2015 by Sankei Shimbun and Japan Today that only 19% of Japan’s population actually got to know that when National Foundation Day of Japan is.