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Newsletter: Delivery Of Japan's Seasonal Tradition

Delivered on March 31, 2014
Delivery Of Japan's Seasonal Tradition [Issue 18] March 31, 2014

Delivery Of Japan's Seasonal Tradition [Issue 18]
March 31, 2014
Japanese Traditional Culture Promotion & Development Organization


1. Seasonal Flower:
A pretty little flower with vitality: Dandelion (Tampopo)

2. News From JTCO:
New article released!: Kurokawa Noh (Yamagata Pref.)

:: 1. Seasonal Flower

A pretty little flower with vitality: Dandelion (Tampopo)

This is a "Tanka", sung by Wakayama Bokusui recorded in "Rojo".
"Tamagawa no sunani tampopo sakukorowa warenimo omou hito no
Interpretation: "By the time dandelion will start blooming on the
sand of Tama river, I hope there would be someone who would love me
like the flower taking a root even in the harsh sandy soil."

At the first sign of spring, dandelion's yellow flower can be seen
even from cracks of asphalt pavements. Many people might recall
picking them and blowing away the seeds, when he/she was a child.

Dandelion has been continuously used as a herb since ancient times.
The effects are antivirus, anticancer, diuretic effect and to improve
liver function. The Chinese name Tampopo originated in the Azuchi
Momoyama period around 1600 and this name settled 200 years later in
the Edo period.

The native dandelion is said to be expelled by the dandelion that
came from Europe (Taraxacum officinale) but in fact that the native
kind grow in fewer places and for a limited period of time.

They are all called dandelion, however, there are about 20 kinds of
them even only for native species, and different kind is seen in
each area. For instance, yellow Kanto dandelion can often be seen in
the Kanto area but white Shirobana dandelion is common in the Kyushu

The one improved as an edible dandelion is sold as a vegetable, and
all parts are eatable from flower to root. The root has bitterness
and sweetness similar to coffee, so when coffee was expensive it was
occasionally used as a substitution.

A pretty yellow flower, but its root strongly rooted into the ground
with strong vitality. It is an appropriate flower to tell you the
arrival of real spring.

Translation: Hitomi Kochi, reviewed by Maiko Hayashi

:: 2. News from JTCO

New article released!

Kurokawa Noh (Yamagata Pref.)

There are several theories about the origin of Kurokawa Noh. One is
that Ogawanomiya, the third son of the Emperor Gokomatsu, introduced
the Noh to Kurokawa, and another is that the Muto clan, who ruled
Shonai Province from the 13th to 16th centuries, brought Noh players
from Kyoto. The Noh has been passed down for generations over 500
years as a Shinto ritual of Kasuga Shrine, a tutelary shrine in

Translation: Tomoe Ukida, reviewed by Chan Yitin

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