Wakamizu (the first water drawn from the well on New Years Day) (若水)

Wakamizu means drawing water from a well early on New Year's Day morning and offering it at a household Shinto altar. It also means the drawn water.

Being believed to remove bad vibes, wakamizu was used to make an altarage to Toshigami (god of the incoming year), to make a family meal, to rinse out one's mouth and to brew tea after it was offered at a household Shinto altar.

There was a convention to go to draw it early on New Year's Day morning before meeting someone. One might not talk to the person if he or she met someone on the way. The duty to draw wakamizu was assigned to toshi-otoko (a man born in the year current under the twelve-year cycle of the Orient zodiac), or a woman of the family drew it. An auspicious phrase, such as 'I draw golden water,' was chanted on drawing wakamizu.