Hokkaidō Shrine

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Hokkaido Shrine

The Hokkaidō Shrine (北海道神宮 Hokkaidō Jingū?) is a Shinto shrine located in Sapporo, Japan. Sited in Maruyama Park, Chūō-ku, Sapporo, the Hokkaido Shrine enshrines four kami including the soul of the Emperor Meiji. A number of contributors of the Exploration in Hokkaidō such as Mamiya Rinzō are also enshrined.

History[edit]

In 1869, by an order of the Emperor Meiji, a ceremony to enshrine three kami (Shinto deities); Ōkunitama, Ōkuninushi, and Sukunahikona, was held in Tokyo. They were enshrined as the three deities of the Hokkaido reclamation (開拓三神 Kaitaku Sanjin?), and they were later moved to Sapporo by officers in the Kaitakushi, the previous government of Hokkaidō prefecture.[1]

An interim building of the shrine for three kami was constructed in 1870 in Sapporo, although its location was different from the current point where the Hokkaidō Shrine stands. In 1871, the shrine was erected to the current place and named as the "Sapporo Shrine" (Sapporo Jinja),[1] and on September 14 an inaugural ceremony was held.

From 1889 through 1946, Sapporo-jinja was officially designated one of the Kanpei-taisha (官幣大社?), meaning that it stood in the first rank of government supported shrines.[2]

The soul of the Emperor Meiji was newly enshrined to the shrine in 1964, and the building was officially renamed to the current "Hokkaido Shrine".[1] The building was destroyed by the fire in 1974, and later restored in 1978.

Overview[edit]

The area of the Hokkaido Shrine is 180,000 m²,[1] and is adjacent to Maruyama Park. During the season which cherry blossoms in the area bloom, the shrine is crowded with people enjoying Hanami. Many people also visit the shrine during Japanese New Year to go Hatsumōde.

From June 14 to 16 in every year, the Main festival of Hokkaido Shrine, also called "Sapporo Festival" (Sapporo Matsuri), is held, and the line of people bearing Mikoshi parades down the street which leads to the shrine. It also manages a Scouting activities.[3]

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Coordinates: 43°3′15.24697″N 141°18′27.73923″E / 43.0542352694°N 141.3077053417°E / 43.0542352694; 141.3077053417