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Tanabata - The Star Festival

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Tanabata - The Star Festival

July 7th is "Tanabata", the Star Festival in Japan. It is derived from a legend where Orihime (Star Vega) and Hikoboshi (Star Altair) are lovers separated by the Milky Way and are only allowed to meet once a year, on the seventh day of the seventh month. People write their wishes on narrow strips of colored paper (tanzaku) and hang them with other decorations on bamboo branches. It is a fun celebration, especially for kids. Some of their wishes are cute to read. If you would like to try making some tanabata decorations, this site has good instructions (some even have animated instructions).

Japanese Translation

七夕

七月七日は七夕です。天の川を隔てて、離れ離れになってしまった織姫と彦星が、一年に一度だけ七月七日に会う事ができるという伝説に由来されるお祭りです。いろいろな色の短冊と呼ばれる細い紙に、願い事を書いてほかの飾りとともに笹の葉につるします。特に子供たちにとって、楽しい行事です。子供たちが書いた願い事は、なかなかかわいいものです。もし七夕の飾りを作ってみようと思うのなら、このサイトにはわかりやすい作り方(作り方の動画があるものもあります)がのっています。

Romaji Translation

Shichi-gatsu nanoka wa tanabata desu. Amanokawa o hedatete, hanarebanare ni natte shimatta orihime to hikoboshi ga, ichinen ni ichido dake shichi-gatsu nanoka ni au koto ga dekiru to iu densetsu ni yurai sareru omatsuri desu. Iroirona iro no tanzaku to yobareru hosoi kami ni, negai goto o kaite hoka no kazari to tomo ni sasa no ha ni tsurushimasu. Toku ni kodomotachi ni totte, tanoshii gyouji desu. Kodomotachi ga kaita negaigoto wa, nakanaka kawaii mono desu. Moshi tanabata no kazari o tsukutte miyou to omou no nara, kono saito niwa wakariyasui tsukurikata (tsukurikata no douga ga aru mono mo arimasu)ga notte imasu.

Note: The translation is not always literal.

Beginner's Phrases

It is a fun celebration, especially for kids.

  • Toku ni kodomotachi ni totte, tanoshii gyouji desu.
  • とくに こどもたちにとって たのしいぎょうじです。
  • 特に子供たちにとって、楽しい行事です。

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