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Chado or Sado
(Tea Ceremony)

Annual Events: Gyoji and Chaji


Hatsugama being held at the Tokyo center.



Obukucha: The first tea ceremony of the year. On January 1, the first water drawn from the well is warmed on coals that were used on New Year's Eve, and the tea master prepares tea just for his own family.

Hatsugama: Also called Tatezome, the Hatsugama is the tea ceremony held to celebrate the New Year.


Rikyu-ki: A memorial tea ceremony held on the anniversary of Rikyu's death.


Shoburo: In place of the ro (hearth) that is used from November to April, water to make tea is warmed on the furo between May and October. The first tea ceremony held in May is known as Shoburo (meaning "first furo"), and the coming of early summer is expressed.

Spring and fall

Kenchashiki: Tea ceremonies held in Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples. Held at irregular intervals, these are some of the few opportunities for the public to see the tea master preparing tea.

August 1

Hassaku: On this day the shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu entered Edo Castle, marking the start of 260 years of rule by the Tokugawa clan, and many daimyo and retainers came to the castle to offer their congratulations. In memory of this important date in history, August 1 has become the day on which students of chado pay a visit to their tea master.


Nagori no chaji: After October, the furo is put away and replaced by the ro. A tea ceremony to part with the furo for the next half year is held this month. (Also see Shoburo)

Around October 19

Ichio-ki: A tea ceremony held on the anniversary of the death of the tea master Sen Ichio Soshu, the fourth generation from Rikyu and the founder of the tearoom Kankyuan.


Robiraki: On this day the ro, or hearth, is opened for the first time since April, and tea is prepared using tea powder made from leaves freshly picked that summer. The ro will be in use from this time until the following April. (Compare with Shoburo)

Around December 11

Kotohajime: Preparations for welcoming the new year begin, and end-of-year greetings are made on this day.

December 31

Joyagama: On New Year's Eve, the family and close apprentices of the tea master drink the final tea of the year in the tea master's home. The fire built at this time is used for the Obukucha the following year. In this way, the tradition is passed on from one year to the next.



Akatsuki no chaji: Tea ceremonies held in the coldest season of the year. It is started at around 4 a.m., and the participants enjoy the dawning of daylight.


Asa chaji: Tea ceremonies held in the cool hours of morning, around 6 a.m., before the heat of day comes on.


Kuchikiri no chaji: Every year, the tea leaves picked in early summer are packed inside jars and are matured until November, when the jars are unsealed. The leaves are then ground into powder, producing matcha. On this day, tea is prepared using this fresh powder.


Yobanashi no chaji: Tea ceremonies held in candlelight from nightfall until evening.