National Holidays in February

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Mon. 11 Feb. – Kenkoku Kinen no Hi (建国記念の日)

Kenkoku Kinen no Hi, or National Foundation Day, is observed annually on 11 February. As the exact date of Japan’s founding is unclear, the designation is based on the foundation legends as recorded in the Kojiki and Nihon Shoki chronicles, and the accession of the legendary first emperor, Jimmu, which is said to have taken place on the 1st day of the 1st month in 660 BC according to the old calendar (11 February on the Gregorian calendar).
Originally observed as Kigensetsu (紀元節) from 1873 and marked with ceremonies paying homage to the Imperial line at shrines throughout the country, it was removed from the list of national holidays by the Occupation authorities from 1948, and restored as National Foundation Day in 1966.


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