The National Foundation Day is a public holiday in Japan and is celebrated every year on 11th February. The day is celebrated to commemorate the formation of the nation and also for the establishment of the imperial line by the first Japanese ruler, Jimmu.
The day originally coincided with the New Year’s Day according to the Chinese calendar and it is believed that Emperor Jimmu took the throne on this day. According to the Gregorian calendar, the day fell on January 29, which is the date when the festival was originally celebrated. It was then called the Empire Day. It was in 1873 that the Japanese Government decided to shift the day to 11th February, in order to make people realize the importance of the Foundation Day. The government did not disclose the exact calculations used but propagated this day as the day when Jimmu took to the throne.
The National Flag is raised which is followed by a speech by the Prime Minister of Japan. In the era before the Second World War, this day was celebrated with a great passion. After the abolishment and the re-establishment of this day, there is no grandeur associated with the day. The schools and offices in Japan remain closed on this day and people often restrict themselves indoors.
No grand parades or ceremonies are organized on the National Foundation Day of Japan. Although people can be seen waving the Japanese flags. The day is largely seen as one with only political significance. It was on this day in 1946 that the model Constitution was approved by General McArthur.