- Thousands of people flocked to the city Japanese city of Nagaokato celebrate
- Japan has several penis celebrations, but Hodare festival is one of the biggest
- The custom is believed to bring fertility, good luck, and marital success
- Penis festivals have been held in Japan since the 17th Century
Thousands of people flocked to the Japanese city of Nagaoka yesterday, for its annual penis festival.
Japan has several penis celebrations, but the Hodare festival is one of the country's biggest and best.
The fertility festival takes place on the second Sunday of March each year, when women who have married in the past 12 months don traditional Japanese bridal gowns and straddle a wooden phallus, which is paraded through the streets.
Thousands of people flocked to the Japanese city of Nagaoka yesterday, where newlyweds rode a giant wooden penis through the streets
The festival, where all things phallic are celebrated, is believed to bring good fortune
Riding the phallus is believed to bring fertility, good luck, and marital success to those who take part
Japan has several penis celebrations, but the Hodare festival is one of the biggest and best
The custom is believed to bring fertility, good luck, and marital success to those who take part.
The giant, seven foot phallus, which weighs a whopping 95 stone, is celebrated as an emblem of good fortune, and carries religious significance for locals who believe that praying and touching the giant penis will bring them luck.
Although the festival was once a small village celebration, crowds of thousands gathered yesterday to touch and stroke the giant wooden penis as it went past.
Although the festival was once a small village celebration, crowds of thousands gathered yesterday to take part
The festival takes place in the early Spring to symbolise new life
Sellers cash in, selling penis-shaped merchandise to the gathered crowds
Similar festivals have held in Japan for centuries, which some going back as far as the 1600s
A new wooden penis is carved from a cedar tree every year for the parade
'Hodare' means English as 'male genitals', although apparently if the word is spelled out in capitals it also means 'ripening of rice plants'.
A new wooden penis is carved from a cedar tree every year for the parade, and the wooden member is held aloft on wooden beams.
It is Japan’s largest wooden penis, and is carried by men during the parade.
The festival takes place in the early Spring to symbolise new life.
Similar festivals have held in Japan for centuries, which some going back as far as the 1600s, but the events have grown in popularity in recent years, with tourists flocking to attend them.
Although it was once a small village celebration, now thousands of tourists flock to attend
The giant, seven foot phallus, which weighs a whopping 95 stone, is celebrated as an emblem of good fortune
'Hodare' means English as 'male genitals', and also means 'ripening of rice plants'
The wooden penis is Japan's largest and is carried by men during the parade
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