Yoshino-jingu Shrine (吉野神宮)

Yoshino-jingu Shrine located in Yoshino-cho, Yoshino-gun, Nara Prefecture is a shrine whose enshrined deity is Emperor Godaigo. It is one of the fifteen Shinto shrines enshrining the royalty and military commanders in the Southern Court side who contributed to the Kenmu Restoration, and it was formerly ranked as Kanpei-taisha (large-scale state shrine). Its former name of the shrine was Yoshino no miya.

Emperor Gomurakami of the Southern Court (Japan), after the death of his father the Emperor Godaigo in 1339, enshrined the statue of his father in Kissuiin. Since then, memorial services had been practiced according to Buddhist rite. It changed its name to Yoshimizu-jinja Shrine after the separation of Buddhism and Shintoism in 1873 and became a shine that enshrined Emperor Godaigo.

Aside from this, the foundation of Yoshino no miya Shrine as one of Kanpei-chusha (middle-scale government shrines) was decided in accordance with the Emperor Meiji's wishes in 1889.
After the main building was completed in 1892, the statue of Emperor Godaigo was moved from Yoshimizu-jinja Shrine and Senza-sai (a ceremony to commemorate the transfer of a Shinto shrine) was held
It was raised to Kanpei-taisha in 1901 and changed its name to Yoshino-jingu Shrine in 1918.

In 1923, its precinct was enlarged. In 1927, the framework of the current Honden (main shrine) and the construction of Noritoya Hall (a hall for Shinto prayer) were completed.

In 1928, the construction of existing Haiden (a hall of worship) was completed. In 1929, the construction of Shinmon (shrine gate) was completed. In 1930, the construction of Otorii (a large gateway to a Shinto shrine) was completed. In 1998, the existing Saikan (a purification hall for Shinto priests) was completed.

Annual events
On January 1: New Year's Festival
On January 3: Genshisai (shinto festival of origins)
On February 17: Kinensai (prayer service for a good crop)
The third Sunday of April: Haru-no-taisai Grand Spring Festival (the Kemmu Restoration anniversary memorial festival)
On July 31: Nagoshi-taisai (summer grand purification)
On September 27: autumn major festival (the anniversary of Emperor Godaigo's death)
On December 23: Tencho-sai Festival (to celebrate the Emperor)
On December 31: Oharae (year-end grand purification)

Honden (main hall), Haiden (a hall of worship), and Shinmon (shrine gate) are oriented to the north in the direction of Kyoto, which was a layout adopted in order to meet Emperor Godaigo's ardent wish to return to gosho (Imperial Palace) in Kyoto. The buildings are all-cypress. It is said to be a typical of the modern shrine architecture.

It is a place well known for beautiful cherry blossoms. The shrine commands a distance view of Kongo-san Mountain (Kongo mountainous district) and Yamato Katsuragi Mountain.

Three Sessha (auxiliary shrine dedicated to a deity close-related to that of a main shrine)
The three auxiliary shrines, Goei, Funaoka and Takizakura, stand side by side. Their enshrined deities are those who performed distinguished services in the Southern Court: Suketomo HINO, Toshimoto HINO, Norinaga KOJIMA, Takanori KOJIMA, Shigetoshi SAKURAYAMA, Michimasu DOI, and Michitsuna TOKUNO.

Railway: 1km from Yoshino-jingu Station, Kinki line of Kinki Nippon Railway.

Road: National Route 169

[Original Japanese]