University Museums

Title: Boy's Day, May 5
Name: Print
Date: 1830's
Medium: Color woodcut on paper
Country/Culture: Japanese
Dimensions: 12 7/8 x 8 7/8 in. (32.7 x 22.5 cm)
Inscription: Kanji writting along the right and left sides
Classification: Prints and Printing Plates
Credit Line: Gift of Joanna M. Hansen. In the permanent collection, Brunnier Art Museum, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.
Object Number: UM82.83
More Information
The day was originally called Tango no Sekku (端午の節句) (also known as Feast of Banners) and was celebrated on the fifth day of the fifth moon in the lunar calendar or Chinese calendar. Girls' Day (Hinamatsuri) was celebrated on March 3. After Japan switched to the Gregorian calendar, the date was moved to May 5.[1] It was originally exclusively male celebrating boys and recognizing fathers, but in the modern era it includes both male and female children, as well as recognizing mothers along with fathers and family qualities of unity.
In 1948, the government decreed this day to be a national holiday to celebrate the happiness of all children and to express gratitude toward mothers. It was renamed Kodomo no Hi.