from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The coming-of-age ceremony of an apprentice geisha, often associated with loss of virginity.


From Japanese 水揚げ. (Wiktionary)


  • Now, mizu means "water" and age means "raise up" or "place on"; so that the term mizuage sounds as if it might have something to do with raising up water or placing something on the water.

    Memoirs of a Geisha

  • She carefully embellishes my almond latte mix with a Vesuvius Rosetta, her lithe motions as choreographed as a geisha's mizuage.

    Latte Art

  • On the other hand, after her mizuage, a first-class geisha won't make herself available to men on a nightly basis.

    Arthur Golden - An interview with author

  • For example, all apprentice geisha go through something they call mizuage, which we might call,

    Arthur Golden - An interview with author

  • But one crucial scene - the auctioning of Sayuri's virginity, a practice described by Golden as mizuage, which occupies a key narrative point in the very middle of the book - is according to Iwasaki completely fictional; she stresses that there is absolutely no element of prostitution at all to the geisha system, at least as she knew it in the 1950s.

    April Books 11) Memoirs of a Geisha, by Arthur Golden

  • After the mizuage ceremony, the next major rite of passage in the life of a maiko is her erikae ceremony, or “turning of the collar.”

    Geisha, A Life

  • I asked Mama Masako if I was supposed to ask my customers to pay for the expenses of the mizuage ceremony.

    Geisha, A Life

  • At her mizuage ceremony, the topknot is symbolically cut to denote her transition from girlhood to young womanhood and she assumes a more adult hairstyle.

    Geisha, A Life

  • A young oiran also underwent a ritual called a “mizuage” but hers consisted of being ceremoniously deflowered by a patron who had paid handsomely for the privilege.

    Geisha, A Life

  • This alternative definition of the word “mizuage” has been the source of some confusion about what it means to be a geisha.

    Geisha, A Life


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