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Autumn Yabusame (Horseback Archery) | MOROYAMA

November 3, 2017 @ 13:30 - 18:00

Yabusame is the military art of discharging an arrow at a target while riding on a running horse. Each year in both Autumn and Spring Moroyama town celebrates this ancient military art form. Moroyama is the only place in Saitama with this cultural event. Furthermore, the event has been  running bi-annually for almost a thousand years. Consequently, it was designated as a Prefectural Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2005. Yabusame was first practised by Samurai Warriors in the late Heian period until the end of the Kamakura period. The Moroyama Horseback archery event typically involves teenage boys.

Yabusame in Moroyama in Autumn

The Autumn event is always on Culture Day, November 3rd. The main display of archery on running horses takes place about 3 pm. In addition, there are other events as well, in the lead up to this, including some very unique traditional customs. From November 1st the boys undergo purification and a number of other rituals. On the day they parade through the town from about 2 pm after an important ritual were they are donned with flowered kabuto. (In the spring event, children under 7 perform the archery). In both spring and autumn, the sacred young boys shoot at targets with arrows imparted with divining power. The people hope these arrows will convey their wishes to the divinity.

Yabusame in Moroyama

Izumoiwai shrine
5-17-1,iwainishi moroyama-machi irumagun saitama-ken


Other events on Culture Day in Saitama:

Iruma Air Show


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Izumoiwai Shrine
5-17-1,iwainishi, Moroyama Town
Iruma Gun, Saitama 350-0465 Japan
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