jichinsai 地鎮祭
KEY WORD : architecture / shrines
Also called chinjisai 鎮地祭; jisai 地祭, jiiwai 地祝, tsuchimatsuri 土祭 or tokoshizume-no-matsuri とこしずめのまつり. The ceremony performed before the ground breaking of a new building. In the Edo period, the ceremony was the responsibility of the carpenters. But today, it is performed by Shinto priests who pray for the safety of the workmen and to appease the gods who may be disturbed by the construction. Bamboo branches, joined by sacred rope, shimenawa 注連縄, are placed at each of the four sides of the building site. A special evergreen branch *himorogi 神籬, surrounded by a simple enclosure, is placed on a stand with eight legs beneath which coarse straw is spread. This arrangement faces south.


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