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Sasarindou Japanese Symbol

Sasarindou

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Description of Sasarindou

The Sasarindou is the crest or emblem of the city of Kamakura in Japan. Located 50 km south-south-west of Tokyo, Kamakura held special importance during the feudal domain system of Japan, until 1871. Kamakura was where the ruling shogunate was located, as well as the imperial household. The Sasarindou itself depicts  bamboo grass leaves and gentian flowers. Originally a small fishing and farming village, Kamakura quickly became an integral part of history with a deep and storied past. The first shogunate was established there in 1192 and it continued to be an important part of power and strategy during this time. However, by the mid-15th century, Kamakura lost most of its military influence along with its political power. A nearby warlord nearly burnt the village to the ground, all but wiping Kamakura from geography. However, over time, Kamakura has shed its rural village and has become more modern.

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Japan main description

The Japanese family crests or Mons have a similar role as the English family crests. The Japanese family crest symbols, or Mons are a coat of arms used to represent families and individuals, and more recently, businesses and institutions. There is little known about the origin of these crests and the Japanese family crest symbols, but it is commonly believed that the tradition started as a fabric pattern to identify aristocratic families and individuals. It eventually evolved to being used in battles, and then became a common way of identification, even for commoners. In terms of design, there were no hard and fast rules. There seemed to be a general consensus to use a roundel that would encircle some sort of figure when designing Japanese family crest symbols. This could be a plant, a man-made shape, a natural or celestial figure as one part of it. Other mon used religious symbols, kanji, and other shapes in their design as well. The mon was also designed to be monochromatic, and colors were generally eschewed. For commoners, however, the use of the mon, or the Japanese family crest symbol was tricky. If they had none, they would either adapt the mon of their patron or organization, or failing that, used what would be considered inappropriate mons, or developed their own altogether. The usage and choice of mons came with their own rules and were largely dictated by social customs - and its usage was monitored and enforced. For example, it was considered inappropriate to use a mon or Japanese family crest symbol already in use by someone else, and especially offensive if held by someone of a higher rank. If a situation such as that occurred, the lower-ranking person would have to change their mon or Japanese family crest symbol in order to avoid any offense or wrongdoing. Mons held by the ruling Japanese clans were legally protected and could not be used by others.
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