FESTIVAL OF BROKEN NEEDLES
In the Kyoto and Kansai regions of Japan, today is the Festival of Broken Needles.
This involves a Buddhist ritual where all workers who depend on pins and needles for their livelihood, bring their needles to the local temple, thank their needles for the year of service, and stick them in soft beds of tofu before floating them down the river.
This ritual is thought to improve the seamstress’ ability to create beauty and enhance sewing skills.
Sewing and weaving skills have historically been important for women in the communities, and this holiday dates back about 400 years. It expresses a thankfulness not only for personal skills, but for the value of good tools to work with.
Here is Tallis’s map of Japan from 1851.
Steve Kovacs and his wife Theresa reside in Loveland, Ohio where they raised their two children. He is a passionate collector of antique maps.
Visit his antique map boutique world-on-paper online. Watch for his daily feature Steve Kovacs: Antique Maps & Fun Facts here on Loveland Beacon.