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Traditional Japanese Masks-History, Types and Meaning The Japanese people today are known to wear surgical masks in public for the protection of disease or for the feeling of privacy. As well as a modern type of masks, traditional masks have been playing an important role in the Japanese society. Traditional Japanese masks are either archetypes borrowed from myths and gods or representing emotions, and they have been used in Shinto shrine festivals, rituals, and traditional drama called Noh. Some of them are quite popular Japanese masks that you can still see today. History of Japanese Masks Masks were originally used ...