Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden

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In the Gehaiden of Fushimi Inari Taisha, there are 12 hanging lanterns representing the twelve zodiac signs. This article will explain the hanging lanterns in the Gehaiden.

For a comprehensive overview of the entire Fushimi Inari Taisha, please refer to 「Highlights and access methods of Fushimi Inari Taisha (Kyoto Prefecture)」.

Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(0)

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What are the Twelve Zodiac Signs

Fushimi Inari Taisha has two worship halls: the Gehaiden and the Naihaiden. The Naihaiden is located in front of the Honden and is where worshippers offer their prayers. In contrast, the Gehaiden is situated between the Roumon and the Naihaiden, where bean-throwing ceremonies are held during the Setsubun Festival, and during the Inari Festival, five portable shrines are lined up in the Gehaiden.

What are the Twelve Zodiac Signs: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(1)

Around the Gehaiden, lanterns are hung in a circle. There are a total of 12 lanterns, and each one represents one of the twelve zodiac signs.

What are the Twelve Zodiac Signs: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(2)

The twelve zodiac signs refer to the division of the ecliptic into 12 equal parts of 30 degrees each, starting from the vernal equinox. They are named after the nearby constellations.

Aries (Hakuyou) - The Ram
Taurus (Kingyuu) - The Bull
Gemini (Soushikyuu) - The Twins
Cancer (Kyokai) - The Crab
Leo (Shishi) - The Lion
Virgo (Shojo) - The Virgin
Libra (Tenbin) - The Scales
Scorpio (Tenkatsu) - The Scorpion
Sagittarius (Jinba) - The Archer
Capricorn (Makatsu) - The Goat
Aquarius (Houhei) - The Water Bearer
Pisces (Sougyo) - The Fish

What are the Twelve Zodiac Signs: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(3)

List of Hanging Lanterns in the Gehaiden

Now, let's take a look at each of the hanging lanterns in the Gehaiden.

Aries - The Ram:

Aries: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(4)

Taurus - The Bull:

Taurus: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(5)

Gemini - The Twins

Gemini: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(6)

Cancer - The Crab

Cancer: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(7)

Leo - The Lion

Leo: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(8)

Virgo - The Virgin

Virgo: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(9)

Libra - The Scales

Libra: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(10)

Scorpio - The Scorpion

Scorpio: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(11)

Sagittarius - The Archer

Sagittarius: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(12)

Capricorn - The Goat

Capricorn: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(13)

Aquarius - The Water Bearer

Aquarius: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(14)

Pisces - The Fish

Pisces: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(15)

Also, the backside of the hanging lanterns is as follows:

双魚宮: Complete guide to the hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari Taisha Gehaiden(16)

If you have the opportunity to visit Fushimi Inari Taisha, be sure to take a look at the hanging lanterns in the Gehaiden.

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Thank you for reading to the end.

( Written by Tatsuo Ikura )