Emperor Meiji (明治天皇, Meiji-tennō, November 3, 1852 – July
30, 1912), or Meiji the Great (明治大帝, Meiji-taitei), was the
Emperor of Japan
Emperor of Japan according to the traditional order of
succession, reigning from February 3, 1867 until his death on July 30,
1912. He presided over a time of rapid change in the Empire of Japan,
as the nation quickly changed from an isolationist feudal state to a
capitalist and imperial world power, characterized by the Japanese
At the time of Meiji's birth in 1852,
Japan was an isolated,
pre-industrial, feudal country dominated by the
Tokugawa shogunate and
the daimyōs, who ruled over the country's more than 250 decentralized
domains. By the time of his death in 1912,
Japan had undergone a
political, social, and industrial revolution at home and emerged as
one of the great powers on the world stage.
The New York Times
The New York Times summed
up this transformation at his funeral in 1912 with the words: "the
contrast between that which preceded the funeral car and that which
followed it was striking indeed. Before it went old Japan; after it
came new Japan."
In Japan, the reigning Emperor is always referred to as "The Emperor";
since the modern era, a deceased Emperor is referred to by a
posthumous name, which is the name of the era coinciding with the
Emperor's reign. Having ruled during the Meiji period, the Emperor is
thus posthumously known as "the Meiji Emperor" or simply "Emperor
Meiji". His personal name, which is not used in any formal or official
context, except for his signature, was Mutsuhito (睦仁).
3 Unrest and accession
4 Meiji era
4.1 Consolidation of power
4.2 Political reform
Concubines and children
7 Titles and styles
8.1 National honours
8.2 Foreign honours
11 In film
13 External links
Yoshiko Nakayama (mother of Emperor Meiji)
Tokugawa shogunate had established itself in the early 17th
century. Under its rule, the shōgun governed Japan. About
180 lords, known as daimyōs, ruled autonomous realms under the
shōgun, who occasionally called upon the daimyōs for gifts, but did
not tax them. The shōgun controlled the daimyōs in other ways; only
the shōgun could approve their marriages, and the shōgun could
divest a daimyō of his lands.
In 1615, the first Tokugawa shōgun, Tokugawa Ieyasu, who had
officially retired from his position, and his son Tokugawa Hidetada,
the titular shōgun, issued a code of behavior for the nobility. Under
it, the Emperor was required to devote his time to scholarship and the
arts. The Emperors under the shogunate appear to have closely
adhered to this code, studying
Confucian classics and devoting time to
poetry and calligraphy. They were only taught the rudiments of
Japanese and Chinese history and geography. The shōgun did not
seek the consent or advice of the Emperor for his actions.
Emperors almost never left their palace compound, or Gosho in Kyoto,
except after an Emperor retired or to take shelter in a temple if the
palace caught on fire. Few Emperors lived long enough to retire; of
the Meiji Emperor's five predecessors, only his grandfather lived into
his forties, dying aged forty-six. The Imperial Family suffered
very high rates of infant mortality; all five of the Emperor's
brothers and sisters died as infants, and only five of his own fifteen
children reached adulthood.
Soon after taking control in the early seventeenth century, shogunate
officials (known generically as bakufu) ended much Western trade with
Japan, and barred missionaries from the islands. In addition to the
substantial Chinese trade, only the Dutch continued trade with Japan,
maintaining a post on the island of
Dejima by Nagasaki. However, by
the early 19th century, European and American vessels appeared in the
Japan with increasing frequency.
Prince Mutsuhito was born on November 3, 1852 in a small house on his
maternal grandfather's property at the north end of the Gosho. At the
time, a birth was believed to be polluting, so imperial princes were
not born in the Palace, but usually in a structure, often temporary,
near the pregnant woman's father's house. The boy's mother, Nakayama
Yoshiko, was a concubine (gon no tenji) to his father Emperor Kōmei,
and was the daughter of the acting major counselor, Nakayama
Tadayasu. The young prince was given the name Sachinomiya, or
The young prince was born at a time of change for Japan. This change
was symbolized dramatically when Commodore Matthew Perry and his
squadron of what the Japanese dubbed "the Black Ships", sailed into
the harbor at
Edo (known since 1868 as Tokyo) in July 1853. Perry
sought to open
Japan to trade, and warned the Japanese of military
consequences if they did not agree. During the crisis brought on
by Perry's arrival, the shogunate took, for the first time in at least
250 years, the highly unusual step of consulting with the Imperial
Court, and Emperor Kōmei's officials advised that they felt the
Americans should be allowed to trade and asked that they be informed
in advance of any steps to be taken upon Perry's return. Feeling
that it could not win a war, the Japanese government allowed trade and
submitted to what it dubbed the "Unequal Treaties", giving up tariff
authority and the right to try foreigners in its own courts. The
shogunate's willingness to consult with the Court was short-lived: in
1858, word of a treaty arrived with a letter stating that due to
shortness of time, it had not been possible to consult. Emperor Kōmei
was so incensed that he threatened to abdicate—though even this
action would have required the consent of the shōgun.
Much of the emperor's boyhood is known only through later accounts,
which his biographer
Donald Keene points out are often contradictory.
One contemporary described Mutsuhito as healthy and strong, somewhat
of a bully, and exceptionally talented at sumo. Another states that
the prince was delicate and often ill. Some biographers state that he
fainted when he first heard gunfire, while others deny this
account. On August 16, 1860, Sachinomiya was proclaimed prince of
the blood and heir to the throne, and was formally adopted by his
father's consort. Later that year on November 11, he was proclaimed as
the crown prince and given an adult name, Mutsuhito. The prince
began his education at the age of seven. He proved an indifferent
student, and later in life wrote poems regretting that he had not
applied himself more in writing practice.
Unrest and accession
Main articles: Meiji period, Meiji Restoration, Government of Meiji
Japan, and Meiji Constitution
Emperor Meiji in his younger years
By the early 1860s, the shogunate was under several threats.
Representatives of foreign powers sought to increase their influence
in Japan. Many daimyōs were increasingly dissatisfied with bakufu
handling foreign affairs. Large numbers of young samurai, known as
shishi or "men of high purpose", began to meet and speak against the
shogunate. The shishi revered the
Emperor Kōmei and favored direct
violent action to cure societal ills. While they initially desired the
death or expulsion of all foreigners, the shishi would later begin to
advocate the modernization of the country. The bakufu enacted
several measures to appease the various groups, and hoped to drive a
wedge between the shishi and daimyōs.
Kyoto was a major center for the shishi, who had influence over the
Emperor Kōmei. In 1863, they persuaded him to issue an "Order to
expel barbarians". The Order placed the shogunate in a difficult
position, since it knew it lacked the power to carry it out. Several
attacks were made on foreigners or their ships, and foreign forces
retaliated. Bakufu forces were able to drive most of the shishi out of
Kyoto, and an attempt by them to return in 1864 was driven back.
Nevertheless, unrest continued throughout Japan.
The prince's awareness of the political turmoil is uncertain.
During this time, he studied waka poetry, first with his father, then
with the court poets. As the prince continued his classical
education in 1866, a new shōgun took office: Tokugawa Yoshinobu, a
reformer who desired to transform
Japan into a Western-style state.
Yoshinobu, who was the final shōgun, met with resistance from among
the bakufu, even as unrest and military actions continued. In
mid-1866, a bakufu army set forth to punish rebels in southern Japan.
The army was defeated.
Emperor Kōmei had always enjoyed excellent health, and was only
36 years old in January 1867. In that month, however, he fell
seriously ill. Though he appeared to make some recovery, he suddenly
worsened and died on January 30. British diplomat Sir Ernest Satow
wrote, "it is impossible to deny that [the Emperor Kōmei's]
disappearance from the political scene, leaving as his successor a boy
of fifteen or sixteen [actually fourteen], was most opportune".
The crown prince formally ascended to the throne on February 3, 1867,
in a brief ceremony in Kyoto. The new Emperor continued his
classical education, which did not include matters of politics. In the
meantime, the shōgun, Yoshinobu, struggled to maintain power. He
repeatedly asked for the Emperor's confirmation of his actions, which
he eventually received, but there is no indication that the young
Emperor was himself involved in the decisions. The shishi and other
rebels continued to shape their vision of the new Japan, and while
they revered the Emperor, they had no thought of having him play an
active part in the political process.
The political struggle reached its climax in late 1867. An agreement
was reached by which Yoshinobu would maintain his title and some of
his power, but the lawmaking power would be vested in a bicameral
legislature based on the British model. However, the agreement fell
apart and on November 9, 1867, Yoshinobu officially tendered his
resignation to the Emperor, formally stepping down ten days later.
The following month, the rebels marched on Kyoto, taking control of
the Imperial Palace. On January 4, 1868, the Emperor ceremoniously
read out a document before the court proclaiming the "restoration" of
Imperial rule, and the following month, documents were sent to
Emperor of Japan
Emperor of Japan announces to the sovereigns of all foreign
countries and to their subjects that permission has been granted to
Tokugawa Yoshinobu to return the governing power in
accordance with his own request. We shall henceforward exercise
supreme authority in all the internal and external affairs of the
country. Consequently, the title of Emperor must be substituted for
that of Tycoon, in which the treaties have been made. Officers are
being appointed by us to the conduct of foreign affairs. It is
desirable that the representatives of the treaty powers recognize this
Yoshinobu resisted only briefly, but it was not until late 1869 that
the final bakufu holdouts were finally defeated. In the ninth
month of the following year, the era was changed to Meiji, or
"enlightened rule", which was later used for the emperor's posthumous
name. This marked the beginning of the custom of an era coinciding
with an emperor's reign, and posthumously naming the emperor after the
era during which he ruled.
Soon after his accession, the Emperor's officials presented Ichijō
Haruko to him as a possible bride. The future Empress was the daughter
of an Imperial official, and was three years older than the groom, who
would have to wait to wed until after his genpuku (manhood ceremony).
The two married on January 11, 1869. Known posthumously as Empress
Shōken, she was the first Imperial Consort to receive the title of
kōgō (literally, the Emperor's wife, translated as Empress Consort),
in several hundred years. Although she was the first Japanese Empress
Consort to play a public role, she bore no children. However, the
Meiji Emperor had fifteen children by five official ladies-in-waiting.
Only five of his children, a prince born to Lady Naruko (1855–1943),
the daughter of Yanagiwara Mitsunaru, and four princesses born to Lady
Sachiko (1867–1947), the eldest daughter of
Count Sono Motosachi,
lived to adulthood. They were:
Crown Prince Yoshihito (Haru-no-miya Yoshihito Shinnō), 3rd son,
(August 31, 1879 – December 25, 1926) (see Emperor Taishō)
Princess Masako (Tsune-no-miya Masako Naishinnō), 6th daughter,
(September 30, 1888 – March 8, 1940) (see Princess Masako Takeda)
Princess Fusako (Kane-no-miya Fusako Naishinnō), 7th daughter,
(January 28, 1890 – August 11, 1974) (see Fusako Kitashirakawa)
Princess Nobuko (Fumi-no-miya Nobuko Naishinnō), 8th daughter,
(August 7, 1891 – November 3, 1933) (see Princess Nobuko Asaka)
Princess Toshiko (Yasu-no-miya Toshiko Naishinnō), 9th daughter, (May
11, 1896 – March 5, 1978) (see Toshiko Higashikuni)
Main article: Meiji Restoration
Consolidation of power
Sixteen-year-old emperor, traveling from
Tokyo at the end of
Despite the ouster of the bakufu, no effective central government had
been put in place by the rebels. On March 23, foreign envoys were
first permitted to visit
Kyoto and pay formal calls on the
Emperor. On April 7, 1868, the Emperor was presented with the
Charter Oath, a five-point statement of the nature of the new
government, designed to win over those who had not yet committed
themselves to the new regime. This document, which the Emperor then
formally promulgated, abolished feudalism and proclaimed a modern
democratic government for Japan. The
Charter Oath would later be cited
Emperor Hirohito in the
Humanity Declaration as support for the
imposed changes in Japanese government following World War II. In
mid-May, he left the Imperial precincts in
Kyoto for the first time
since early childhood to take command of the forces pursuing the
remnants of the bakufu armies. Traveling in slow stages, he took three
days to travel from
Kyoto to Osaka, through roads lined with
crowds. There was no conflict in Osaka; the new leaders wanted the
Emperor to be more visible to his people and to foreign envoys. At the
end of May, after two weeks in Osaka (in a much less formal atmosphere
than in Kyoto), the Emperor returned to his home. Shortly after
his return, it was announced that the Emperor would begin to preside
over all state business, reserving further literary study for his
leisure time. Only from 1871 did the Emperor's studies include
materials on contemporary affairs.
Emperor Meiji on 1905 New-York Tribune cover.
On September 19, 1868, the Emperor announced that the name of the city
Edo was being changed to Tokyo, or "eastern capital". He was
formally crowned in
Kyoto on October 15 (a ceremony which had been
postponed from the previous year due to the unrest). Shortly before
the coronation, he announced that the new era, or nengō, would be
called Meiji or "enlightened rule". Heretofore the nengō had often
been changed multiple times in an emperor's reign; from now on, it was
announced, there would only be one nengō per reign.
Soon after his coronation, the Emperor journeyed to
Tokyo by road,
visiting it for the first time. He arrived in late November, and began
an extended stay by distributing sake among the population. The
Tokyo was eager for an Imperial visit; it had been the
site of the shōgun's court and the population feared that with the
abolition of the shogunate, the city might fall into decline. It
would not be until 1889 that a final decision was made to move the
capital to Tokyo. While in Tokyo, the Emperor boarded a Japanese
naval vessel for the first time, and the following day gave
instructions for studies to see how Japan's navy could be
strengthened. Soon after his return to Kyoto, a rescript was
issued in the Emperor's name (but most likely written by court
officials). It indicated his intent to be involved in government
affairs, and indeed he attended cabinet meetings and innumerable other
government functions, though rarely speaking, almost until the day of
The Empress and the Emperor went to the military parade which
commemorated promulgation of the Constitution on February 11, 1889.
The successful revolutionaries organized themselves into a Council of
State, and subsequently into a system where three main ministers led
the government. This structure would last until the establishment of a
prime minister, who would lead a cabinet in the western fashion, in
1885. Initially, not even the retention of the Emperor was
certain; revolutionary leader
Gotō Shōjirō later stated that some
officials "were afraid the extremists might go further and abolish the
Chiefs of sixteen countries in a gathering envisage a desirable future
A portrait of
Emperor Meiji in his older years from The Spell of
Japan(1914) by Isabel Weld Perkins
Japan's new leaders sought to reform the patchwork system of domains
governed by the daimyōs. In 1869, several of the daimyōs who had
supported the revolution gave their lands to the Emperor and were
reappointed as governors, with considerable salaries. By the following
year, all other daimyōs had followed suit.
In 1871, the Emperor announced that domains were entirely abolished,
Japan was organized into 72 prefectures. The daimyōs were
compensated with annual salaries equal to ten percent of their former
revenues (from which they did not now have to deduct the cost of
governing), but were required to move to the new capital, Tokyo. Most
retired from politics.
The new administration gradually abolished most privileges of the
samurai, including their right to a stipend from the government.
However, unlike the daimyōs, many samurai suffered financially from
this change. Most other class-based distinctions were abolished.
Legalized discrimination against the burakumin ended. However, these
classes continue to suffer discrimination in
Japan to the present
Although a parliament was formed, it had no real power, and neither
did the emperor.[disputed – discuss] Power had passed from the
Tokugawa into the hands of those daimyōs and other samurai who had
led the Restoration.
Japan was thus controlled by the Genrō, an
oligarchy which comprised the most powerful men of the military,
political and economic spheres. The emperor, if nothing else, showed
greater political longevity than his recent predecessors, as he was
the first Japanese monarch to remain on the throne past the age of 50
since the abdication of
Emperor Ōgimachi in 1586.
The Emperor Meiji, November 1909.
The Japanese take pride in the Meiji Restoration, as it and the
accompanying industrialization allowed
Japan to become the preeminent
power in the Pacific and a major player in the world within a
generation. Yet, Emperor Meiji's role in the Restoration remains
debatable. He certainly did not control Japan[disputed – discuss],
but how much influence he wielded is unknown. It is unlikely it will
ever be clear whether he supported the Sino-Japanese War (1894–1895)
Russo-Japanese War (1904–1905). One of the few windows we
have into the Emperor's own feelings is his poetry, which seems to
indicate a pacifist streak, or at least a man who wished war could be
avoided.[original research?] He composed the following pacifist poem
in waka form:
Yomo no umi
mina harakara to
omofu yo ni
nado namikaze no
The seas of the four directions—
all are born of one womb:
why, then, do the wind and waves rise in discord?
This poem was later recited by his grandson, Emperor Shōwa
(Hirohito), in an Imperial Conference in September 1941, indirectly
showing his own anti-war sentiment.[disputed – discuss]
Near the end of his life several anarchists, including Shūsui
Kōtoku, were executed (1911) on charges of having conspired to murder
the sovereign. This conspiracy was known as the High Treason Incident
Emperor Meiji, suffering from diabetes, nephritis, and
gastroenteritis, died of uremia. Although the official announcement
said he died at 00:42 on July 30, 1912, the actual death was at 22:40
on July 29. After the emperor's death in 1912, the Japanese
Diet passed a resolution to commemorate his role in the Meiji
Restoration. An iris garden in an area of
Tokyo where Emperor Meiji
and the Empress had been known to visit was chosen as the building's
location for the
Shinto shrine Meiji jingū. The shrine does not
contain the Emperor's grave, which is at Fushimi-momoyama south of
Concubines and children
This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this
section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material
may be challenged and removed. (July 2017) (Learn how and when to
remove this template message)
Lady Mitsuko (1853–1873). Not much is known about Lady Mitsuko.
However, she gave birth to the Emperor's first son. She died in
Lady Natsuko (1856 – November 14, 1873). She gave birth to the
Emperor's first daughter and also died in childbirth.
Yanagihara Naruko (June 26, 1859 – October 16, 1943). Mother of the
Chigusa Kotoko (1855–1944).
Sono Sachiko (December 23, 1867 – July 7, 1947). Mother of Princess
Masako, Princess Fusako, Princess Nobuko and Princess Toshiko.
Wakamitsuteru-hiko no Mikoto
稚瑞照彦尊 (stillborn son)
September 18, 1873
September 18, 1873
Wakatakayori-hime no Mikoto
稚高依姫尊 (stillborn daughter)
November 13, 1873
November 13, 1873
Shigeko, Princess Ume
January 25, 1875
June 8, 1876
Yukihito, Prince Take
September 23, 1877
July 26, 1878
Yoshihito, Prince Haru (Emperor Taishō)
August 31, 1879
December 25, 1926(1926-12-25) (aged 47)
May 25, 1900
Hirohito, Emperor Shōwa
Yasuhito, Prince Chichibu
Nobuhito, Prince Takamatsu
Takahito, Prince Mikasa
Akiko, Princess Shige
August 3, 1881
September 6, 1883
Fumiko, Princess Masu
January 26, 1883
September 8, 1883
Shizuko, Princess Hisa
February 10, 1886
April 4, 1887
Michihito, Prince Aki
August 22, 1887
November 12, 1888
Masako, Princess Tsune (Princess Masako Takeda)
September 30, 1888
March 8, 1940(1940-03-08) (aged 51)
Tsunehisa, Prince Takeda
April 30, 1908
Prince Tsuneyoshi Takeda
Princess Ayako Takeda
Fusako, Princess Kane (Fusako Kitashirakawa)
January 28, 1890
August 11, 1974(1974-08-11) (aged 84)
Naruhisa, Prince Kitashirakawa
April 29, 1909
Prince Nagahisa Kitashirakawa
Princess Mineko Kitashirakawa
Princess Sawako Kitashirakawa
Princess Taeko Kitashirakawa
Nobuko, Princess Fumi (Princess Nobuko Asaka)
August 7, 1891
November 3, 1933(1933-11-03) (aged 42)
Yasuhiko, Prince Asaka
May 6, 1909
Princess Kikuko Asaka
Princess Takahiko Asaka
Prince Tadahito Asaka
Princess Kiyoko Asaka
Teruhito, Prince Mitsu
November 30, 1893
August 17, 1894
Toshiko, Princess Yasu (Toshiko Higashikuni)
May 11, 1896
March 5, 1978(1978-03-05) (aged 81)
Naruhiko, Prince Higashikuni
May 18, 1915
Prince Morihiro Higashikuni
Prince Moromasa Higashikuni
Prince Akitsune Higashikuni
Prince Toshihiko Higashikuni
Takiko, Princess Sada
September 24, 1897
January 11, 1899
Titles and styles
His Imperial Majesty
Your Imperial Majesty
November 3, 1852 – November 11, 1860: His Imperial Highness The
November 11, 1860 – February 3, 1867: His Imperial Highness The
February 3, 1867 – July 30, 1912: His Imperial
Majesty The Emperor
Posthumous title: His Imperial
Majesty Emperor Meiji
Grand Cordon and Collar of the Order of the Chrysanthemum
Recipient of the
Order of the Rising Sun
Order of the Rising Sun with Paulownia Flowers
Prussia : Recipient of the Order of the Black Eagle
Sweden : Knight of the Royal Order of the Seraphim
United Kingdom : Knight of the Garter
Thailand : Order of the Royal House of Chakri
Kingdom of Hawaii : Recipient of the Royal Order of
Kingdom of Italy : Knight of the Order of the Most Holy
Kingdom of Italy : Knight Grand Cross of the Order of
Saints Maurice and Lazarus
Kingdom of Italy : Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the
Crown of Italy
Greece : Grand Cross of the Order of the Redeemer
Spain : Knight of the Golden Fleece
Ancestors of Emperor Meiji
16. Prince of the Blood Kan'in-no-miya Sukehito (1733–1794)
Emperor Kōkaku (1771–1840)
17. Ōe Iwashiro (1744–1813)
Emperor Ninkō (1800–1846)
18. Kanshūji Tsunehaya (1748–1805)
9. Kanshūji Tadako (1780–1843)
Emperor Kōmei (1831–1867)
20. Ōgimachi Kinaki (1744–1813)
10. Ōgimachi Sanemitsu (1777–1817)
21. Nabeshima (1755–1793)
5. Ōgimachi Naoko (1803–1856)
22. Yotsutsuji Kintō (1728–1788)
11. Yotsutsuji Chie
1. Emperor Meiji
24. Nakayama Tadaosa (1756–1809)
12. Nakayama Tadayori (1778–1825)
25. Sanjō Narakimi (d. 1805)
Nakayama Tadayasu (1809–1888)
26. Ōgimachisanjō Sanetomo (1748–1785)
13. Ōgimachisanjō Tsunako (d. 1858)
Nakayama Yoshiko (1836–1907)
28. Matsura Masanobu (1735–1771)
14. Matsura Seizan, 9th daimyō of Hirado (1760–1841)
29. Motai Tomoko
7. Matsura Aiko (1818–1906)
The Meiji era ushered in many far-reaching changes to the ancient
feudal society of Japan. A timeline of major events might include:
November 3, 1852:
Emperor Meiji (then known as Sachinomiya) is born to
the imperial concubine
Nakayama Yoshiko and Emperor Kōmei.
1853: A fleet of ships headed by Commodore Matthew Perry arrives in
Japan on July 8. Death of the shōgun Tokugawa Ieyoshi;
Tokugawa Iesada as shōgun.
1854–55: Treaties are signed with the
United States by the
Late 1850s–1860s: The "Sonnō jōi" movement is in full force.
1858: The shogunate signs treaties with the Netherlands, Imperial
Russia, and Great Britain. Death of the shōgun Tokugawa Iesada;
Tokugawa Iemochi as shōgun.
March 1860: The Tairō, Ii Naosuke, is assassinated in the Sakuradamon
November 11: Sachinomiya is formally proclaimed Crown Prince and given
the personal name Mutsuhito.
1862: Namamugi Incident.
Bombardment of Shimonoseki
Bombardment of Shimonoseki by British, American, French,
and Dutch ships; fighting ensues between the shogunate and Chōshū.
1866: Death of the shōgun Tokugawa Iemochi; appointment of Tokugawa
Yoshinobu as shōgun.
January 31, 1867: Death of
Emperor Kōmei from hemorrhagic smallpox,
unofficial accession of Mutsuhito to the throne.
January 4, 1868: Formal restoration of imperial rule; end of 265 years
of rule by the Tokugawa shogunate.
September 12: Formal enthronement of the Emperor.
October 23: The era name is changed to Meiji.
November 6: The capital is moved from
Kyoto to Edo, renamed Tokyo.
November 5, 1872: The Emperor receives the Grand Duke Alexei
Alexandrovich of Russia.
Late 1860s–1881: Period of rebellion and assassination in Japan.
January 11, 1869: Marriage of the Emperor to Ichijo Haruko,
thenceforth the Empress Shōken.
September 4: The Emperor receives The Duke of Edinburgh.
1871: The abolition of the han system is proclaimed.
Edo Castle is destroyed in a conflagration; the Emperor moves to
the Akasaka Palace. His first children are born, but die at birth.
1877: The Satsuma Rebellion.
1878: Assassination of Ōkubo Toshimichi.
August 31, 1879: Prince Yoshihito, the future
Emperor Taishō and the
Emperor's only surviving son, is born.
1881: Receives the first state visit of a foreign monarch, King
Kalākaua of Hawaii.
Meiji Constitution promulgated;
Itō Hirobumi becomes first
Prime Minister of Japan.
1894: Sino-Japanese War; Japanese victory establishes
Japan as a
1901: Became grandfather when Emperor Taishō's son, the future
Emperor Shōwa was born.
1904–1905: Russo-Japanese War; Japanese victory earns
status of a great power.
1910: The Annexation of Korea by the Empire of Japan.
1912: The Emperor dies.
Stuido Still snap the 1957 Japanese film "Meiji Tenno to Nichiro
Emperor Meiji and the Great Russo-Japanese War)"(Shintoho).
Emperor Meiji of Kanjūrō Arashi.
Emperor Meiji is portrayed by Toshirō Mifune in the 1980 Japanese war
drama film The Battle of Port Arthur (sometimes referred as 203
Kochi). Directed by Toshio Masuda, the film depicted the Siege of
Port Arthur during the Russo-Japanese War, and also starred Tatsuya
Nakadai (as General Nogi Maresuke), and
Tetsurō Tamba (as General
Emperor Meiji also appears in the 2003 film The Last Samurai,
portrayed by Nakamura Shichinosuke II.
^ a b
"The Funeral Ceremonies of Meiji Tenno" reprinted from the Japan
Advertiser Article 8—No Title], New York Times. October 13, 1912.
^ Jansen 1995, p. vii.
^ Gordon 2009, pp. 14–15.
^ Keene 2002, p. 3.
^ a b Gordon 2009, pp. 3–4.
^ a b c Gordon 2009, p. 2.
^ Gordon 2009, pp. 4–5.
^ Gordon 2009, p. 19.
^ Gordon 2009, p. 47.
^ Keene 2002, p. 10.
^ Keene 2002, p. 14.
^ a b Gordon 2009, pp. 50–51.
^ Keene 2002, p. 18.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 39–41.
^ Keene 2002, p. xii.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 51–52.
^ Keene 2002, p. 46.
^ Keene 2002, p. 48.
^ Gordon 2009, pp. 53–55.
^ a b Gordon 2009, pp. 55–56.
^ Keene 2002, p. 73.
^ Keene 2002, p. 78.
^ Gordon 2009, pp. 57–58.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 94–96.
^ Keene 2002, p. 98.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 102–104.
^ Takano, p. 256.
^ a b c Gordon 2009, p. 59.
^ Keene 2002, p. 121.
^ Keene 2002, p. 117.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 105–107.
^ Keene 2002, p. 133.
^ Jansen 1995, p. 195.
^ Keene 2002, p. 143.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 145–146.
^ Keene 2002, p. 147.
^ Keene 2002, p. 171.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 157–159.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 160–163.
^ Gordon 2009, p. 68.
^ Keene 2002, pp. 163–165.
^ Keene 2002, p. 168.
^ Gordon 2009, p. 64.
^ Jansen 1994, p. 342.
^ Gordon 2009, p. 63.
^ Gordon 2009, p. 65.
^ a b c "Archived copy". Archived from the original on December 29,
2016. Retrieved December 3, 2016. "Historical Events Today: 1867
- Prince Mutsuhito, 14, becomes
Emperor Meiji of
^ Takashi, Fujitani (1998). Splendid monarchy: power and pageantry in
modern Japan. University of California Press. p. 145.
^ "広報 No.589 明治の終幕" (PDF) (in Japanese). Sannohe town
hall. Retrieved May 18, 2011.
^ "Genealogy". Reichsarchiv. Retrieved 24 October 2017. (in
^ Considered by German Japanologist
Johannes Justus Rein and described
by Francis L. Hawks and Commodore Matthew Perry in their 1856 work,
Narrative of the Expedition of an American Squadron to the China Seas
Japan Performed in the Years 1852, 1853 and 1854 under the Command
of Commodore M.C. Perry,
United States Navy., as the "Opening" of
^ The Battle of Port Arthur (203 Koshi) in the Internet Movie Database
Gordon, Andrew (2003), A Modern History of Japan: from Tokugawa Times
to the Present, Oxford University Press
ISBN 0195110609/ISBN 9780195110609;
ISBN 0195110617/ISBN 9780195110616; OCLC
Jansen, Marius (1961), Sakamoto Ryoma and the Meiji Restoration,
Princeton University Press OCLC 413111
____________ (1995), The Emergence of Meiji Japan, Cambridge
University Press ISBN 0521482380/ISBN 9780521482387;
ISBN 0521484057/ISBN 9780521484053; OCLC 31515308
Keene, Donald (2002), Emperor of Japan: Meiji and His World,
1852–1912, Columbia University Press
ISBN 023112340X/ISBN 9780231123402; OCLC 46731178
Wilson, George M. (1992), Patriots and Redeemers: Motives in the Meiji
Restoration, University of Chicago Press
ISBN 0226900916/ISBN 9780226900919;
ISBN 0226900924/ISBN 9780226900926; OCLC 23869701
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Emperor Meiji.
"Mutsu Hito". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). 1911.
"Mutsuhito, Emperor of Japan". The New Student's Reference Work.
Imperial House of Japan
Born: 3 November 1852 Died: 30 July 1912
Emperor of Japan
February 3, 1867 – July 30, 1912
Italics mark imperial consort and regent Jingū, who is not
Years given as CE / AD
Empire of Japan
Japan (Post-war Japan)
Akihito (Heisei period; Reigning Emperor)
Imperial family tree
Empire of Japan
Foreign commerce and shipping
Flag of Japan
Rising Sun Flag
Imperial Seal of Japan
Government Seal of Japan
State Seal of Japan
Privy Seal of Japan
Rescript on Education
National Spiritual Mobilization Movement
Peace Preservation Law
Supreme Court of Judicature
Greater East Asia Conference
Agriculture and Commerce
Commerce and Industry
Greater East Asia
East Asia Development Board (Kōain)
Legislative & Deliberative Bodies
Imperial General Headquarters
Rescript to Soldiers and Sailors
Senjinkun military code
Nuclear weapons program
Supreme War Council
Imperial Japanese Army
Railways and Shipping
Imperial Way Faction (Kōdōha)
Imperial Japanese Navy
First Sino-Japanese War
World War I
General Election Law
Washington Naval Treaty
Shōwa financial crisis
Pacification of Manchukuo
Second Sino-Japanese War
Soviet–Japanese border conflicts
Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact
Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
Surrender (Potsdam Declaration, Gyokuon-hōsō)
Greater East Asia
Dutch East Indies
German pre–World War II industrial co-operation
Racial Equality Proposal
Shinmin no Michi
International Military Tribunal for the Far East
Japanese dissidence during the Shōwa period
ISNI: 0000 0001 2129 1933
BNF: cb148392651 (data)
In 1876, he