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was a Japanese career officer in the
Imperial Japanese Army Imperial is that which relates to an empire, emperor, or imperialism. Imperial or The Imperial may also refer to: Places United States * Imperial, California * Imperial, Missouri * Imperial, Nebraska * Imperial, Pennsylvania * Imperial, Texas * ...
, who was a member of the Fushimi-no-miya, one of the '' shinnōke'' branches of the Imperial Family of Japan, which were eligible to succeed to the
Chrysanthemum Throne The is the throne The thrones for the Monarchy of Canada, Canadian monarch (back left) and his or her List of Canadian monarchs#Consort, royal consort (back right) in the Senate of Canada; these may also be occupied by the sovereign's represe ...
.


Biography


Early life

Prince Akihito was born as Prince Yoshiaki, the seventh son of
Prince Fushimi Kuniie
Prince Fushimi Kuniie
. In 1858, he was adopted by
Emperor Ninkō
Emperor Ninkō
as a potential heir to the throne. As he was born when the country was still under rule by the Tokugawa Bakufu, he was sent into the
Buddhist Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of designated religious behaviour, behaviors and practices, morality, morals, beliefs, worldviews, religious text, texts, shrine, ...
priesthood, and assigned to serve at the '' monzeki'' temple of
Ninna-ji
Ninna-ji
in
Kyoto Kyoto (; Japanese language, Japanese: , ''Kyōto'' ), officially , is the capital city of Kyoto Prefecture in Japan. Located in the Kansai region on the island of Honshu, Kyoto forms a part of the Keihanshin metropolitan area along with Osaka and ...
, where he adopted the title ''Ninnaji-no-miya Yoshiaki'' (仁和寺宮嘉彰). He returned to secular life in 1867 during the
Meiji Restoration The , referred to at the time as the , and also known as the Meiji Renovation, Revolution, Reform, or Renewal, was a political event that restored practical imperial rule to Japan in 1868 under Emperor Meiji. Although there were ruling Emperors b ...
, and led imperial forces to
Osaka is a Cities designated by government ordinance of Japan, designated city in the Kansai region of Honshu in Japan. It is the capital city of Osaka Prefecture and as of 1 January 2012, has an estimated population of 2,668,586. Osaka is also the lar ...
, Yamato,
Shikoku is one of the five main islands of Japan , image_flag = Flag of Japan.svg , alt_flag = Centered deep red circle on a white rectangle , image_coat = Imperial Seal of Japan.svg , al ...
and Aizu during the
Boshin War The , sometimes known as the Japanese Revolution, was a civil war in Japan, fought from 1868 to 1869 between forces of the ruling Tokugawa shogunate The Tokugawa shogunate (, Japanese 徳川幕府 ''Tokugawa bakufu''), also known as the , w ...

Boshin War
to overthrow the
Tokugawa shogunate The Tokugawa shogunate (, Japanese 徳川幕府 ''Tokugawa bakufu''), also known as the , was the feudal military government of Japan during the Edo period from 1603 to 1868.Louis-Frédéric, Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005)"''Tokugawa-jidai''"i ...

Tokugawa shogunate
. Prince Yoshiaki married Arima Yoriko (June 18, 1852 – June 26, 1914), daughter of Arima Yorishige, the former ''daimyō'' of Kurume Domain, on November 6, 1869. In 1870, Emperor Meiji assigned him the title of Higashifushimi-no-miya.


Military career

Prince Yoshiaki studied military tactics in England for two years from 1870-1872. Considered a brilliant military tactician, he helped subdue many of the ''samurai'' rebellions in the early years of the Meiji period, including the Saga Rebellion of 1874, and the Satsuma Rebellion of 1877. The emperor granted him the rank of lieutenant general in the newly created
Imperial Japanese Army Imperial is that which relates to an empire, emperor, or imperialism. Imperial or The Imperial may also refer to: Places United States * Imperial, California * Imperial, Missouri * Imperial, Nebraska * Imperial, Pennsylvania * Imperial, Texas * ...
and awarded him the Order of the Rising Sun (1st class). In 1882, he changed the name of his house to Komatsu-no-miya and his personal name from "Yoshiaki" to "Akihito", and became therefore known as "Prince Komatsu-no-miya Akihito". Prince Komatsu rose to the rank of general and received command of the Imperial Guard of Japan, First Imperial Guard Division in 1890. He was nominal commander of the Japanese expeditionary forces in the First Sino-Japanese War (1894–95) and became a member of the Supreme War Council (Japan), Supreme Military Council. Following the death of his uncle, Prince Arisugawa Taruhito in 1895, Prince Komatsu Akihito became the chief of the Imperial Japanese Army General Staff, and received the honorary rank of Field Marshal (Japan), field marshal.


Diplomatic career

Prince Komatsu Akihito also served the Meiji government in a diplomatic capacity. In 1886, he went to England, France, Germany and Russia on behalf of Emperor Meiji. He was sent to Istanbul in 1887 to mark the inaugural step in relations between Ottoman Empire and the Empire of Japan. Prince Komatsu was received in an audience by the Ottoman Emperor Abdul Hamid II, ‘Abdu’l-Hamid II. In June 1902, Prince Komatsu Akihito returned to the United Kingdom to represent Emperor Meiji at the coronation ceremonies for Edward VII of the United Kingdom, King Edward VII, and also visited France, Spain, Belgium, Germany and Russia. In his latter years, Prince Komatsu was a patron of the Japanese Red Cross Society and the ''Dai Nippon Butoku Kai'', along with other charity institutions. As Prince Komatsu died without heirs, the title of Komatsu-no-miya reverted to his younger brother, Prince Higashifushimi Yorihito. However, to preserve the Komatsu family name, in 1910 the fourth son of Prince Kitashirakawa Yoshihisa was renamed Teruhisa Komatsu, with the peerage title of marquis (''koshaku'').


Notes


References

* * * * ;


External links


Turkish Embassy in Washington, D.C. , Japan-Turkey History of Friendship
{{DEFAULTSORT:Komatsu Akihito, Prince Japanese princes Komatsu-no-miya People of the Boshin War Marshals of Japan 1846 births 1903 deaths People of the First Sino-Japanese War Japanese generals People of Meiji-period Japan People of the Satsuma Rebellion Imperial Japanese Army officers Grand Crosses of the Order of the Dannebrog Grand Croix of the Légion d'honneur Honorary Knights Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath