Ryukyu
   The group of southernmost islands stretching almost to Taiwan and forming the semi-independent old kingdom of Ryukyu, which became fully part of Japan in 1868, though at the same time maintaining tributary links with China. In the resulting dispute the king of Ryukyu was taken captive to Tokyo and the Ryukyus were incorporated into Japan under the name of Okinawa prefecture. The two main islands are Okinawa and Amami-oshima. Surviving folk customs of the Ryukyus including the activities of female shamans (cf. miko) have provided important insights into the development of Japanese religions. It is a local custom that all women of Okinawa who have reached the age of 30 are initiated as nanchu (the equivalent of miko) in a solemn ceremony called izaiho held once every twelve years (November 15-18 by the old lunar calendar). Shrines and other religious organisations in Okinawa were transferred to the status of Religious Juridical persons only in 1971, when Okinawa reverted (from post-1945 United States rule) to Japan.

A Popular Dictionary of Shinto. .

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  • RYUKYU — RY 樓KY 樓 L’archipel des Ry ky comprend une soixantaine d’îles qui s’égrènent sur 1 100 kilomètres entre l’île de Ky sh et Taiwan; ces îles couvrent au total 3 317 kilomètres carrés et comptaient 1 500 000 habitants environ en 1994 contre 883 000… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Ryukyu — Ryukyu, archipiélago mas meridional de Japón, hogar del idioma ryukyuense. Okinawa es la isla principal de este conjunto. * * * (Nansei shotö) ► Archipiélago meridional de Japón, entre los mares de Filipinas (E) y de la China Oriental (O),… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Ryukyu — [rē yo͞o′kyo͞o΄, rē o͞o′kyo͞o] chain of Japanese islands in the W Pacific, between Kyushu & Taiwan: c. 1,800 sq mi (4,662 sq km); pop. 1,223,000: chief island, Okinawa …   English World dictionary

  • Ryukyu — Karte Japans, Ryūkyū Inseln markiert Die Lage der Ryūkyū Inseln zwischen Japan, China und Taiwan Die Ryūkyū Inseln (veraltet: Riukiu Inseln oder Liukiu Inseln; jap …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ryūkyū — Karte Japans, Ryūkyū Inseln markiert Die Lage der Ryūkyū Inseln zwischen Japan, China und Taiwan Die Ryūkyū Inseln (veraltet: Riukiu Inseln oder Liukiu Inseln; jap …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ryukyu — Îles Ryūkyū …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ryûkyû — Îles Ryūkyū …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ryükyü — Îles Ryūkyū …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ryūkyū — Îles Ryūkyū …   Wikipédia en Français

  • ryukyu — rēˈ(y)ü(ˌ)kyü, rə̇ˈ noun Usage: usually capitalized Etymology: from the Ryukyu islands, southwest of Japan : the language of the Ryukyuan people that is related to Japanese …   Useful english dictionary

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