Gion-jinja Shrine (祇園神社)

Gion-jinja Shrines are Shinto shrines dedicated to the Gion Faith.

The name of these shrines derives from before the separation of Shinto and Buddhism when the current main deity Susanoo was believed to also be Gozu Tenno, the protective deity of Gion Shoja (Jetavana Grove). There are also many Shinto shrines dedicated to the same faith with the name 'Gozu Tenno-sha'.

When the separation of Buddhism and Shinto occurred during the Meiji period, the Buddhist deity Gozu Tenno was removed from this shrine to leave only the Shinto deity Susanoo but during this time there were also many other shrines from which Buddhist terms such as 'Gion' and 'Gozu Tenno' were removed from the shrine name - including the head shrine in Kyoto which had its name changed from Gion-jinja Shrine to Yasaka-jinja Shrine. However, there are many cases in which the place name Gion, the 'Gion Matsuri' and 'Gion Goryo-e' festivals and the affectionate shrine name 'Gion-san' were not changed even when the name of the shrine was changed.

Gion-jinja Shrines in different areas

Gion-jinja Shrine (Aisho-cho) (Aisho-cho, Shiga Prefecture): Famous for a fireworks display held on July 16.

Gion-jinja (Hyogo Ward, Kobe City) (Hirano, Hyogo Ward, Kobe City): Connected to TAIRA no Kiyomori.

Gion-jinja Shrine (Kurashiki City) (Shimotsui, Kurashiki City, Okayama Prefecture): The ruins of Shimotsui-jo Castle stand within the shrine grounds. This shrine was revered by Kitamaebune trading boat merchants during the Edo period.

Gion-jinja Shrine (Ozu City) (Hataki, Ozu City, Aichi Prefecture): Known for the mid-winter Gion Matsuri festival held in late January.

Gion-jinja Shrine (Gokase-cho) (Kuraokadera-mura, Gokase-cho, Miyazaki Prefecture): Known for the regular autumn 'Okunchi' festival.

Differently named Gion faith shrines

Please refer to the 'Gion-jinja Shrine' category below.

Yoshida-jinja Shrine (Toyohashi): Referred to as "Gozu Tenno no Hokora" in "Tokaido meisho zue" (Pictures of Famous Places along the Tokaido) by Shunpuku AKISATO (published in 1797), and referred to as "Susanoo-sha" in the "Mikawa no Kuni Zenzu" map (printed by Ashisuke-cho, Ina Prefecture in September 1869).

[Original Japanese]