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Pilgrimages---Canton to Chichibu

Pilgrimages to Kannon and Jizo Bosatsu---East and West

Mark W. MacWilliams, Author

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Object Label- General Materials 1

The first side of the keychain shows the crest of the imperial family; the Tokugawa's clan crest is known in Japanese as the triple hollyhock. The middle wording says "Chichibu", while the left and right text are symbolic of an omamori. This writing signifies goodness and safety for families as well as happiness, peace, and luck in the future. 

Side B of the keychain illustrates Mount Buko. Mt Buko's limestone is believed to be from the Mesozoic era and is composed of the same sandstone, slate, chert and greenstone surrounding the limestone quarry area. Mt. Buko, at 1,304 meters high above sea level, is one of the most prominent symbols of Chichibu. Underneath Mt Buko is a pilgrim, undertaking the Chichibu pilgrimage, and a temple representing the Chichibu nighttime festivals.

Overall, the images and kanji on this keychain represent motifs of a strong connection between modern Japan and traditions of the past. The crest showcases the end of a historical period in Japanese history that led Japan into modernity and economic prosperity. This emblem also showcases an important landmark of Chichibu, Mt. Buko. The keychain displays the image of a temple and a man on a pilgrimage, and in combination with the kanji, that symbolizes goodness and safety. It is fair to assume that this pilgrimage will bring these things into the participants life and the keychain is a reminder of the pilgrimage. 

Exhibit: Credit label

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