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The Symbol of Modern Japan - Emperor Meiji – his activities as a monarch of new times
Ewa Pałasz-Rutkowska, Poland
Emperor Mutsuhito, posthumously called Emperor Meiji, became the symbol of reform and the new Japan. When he ascended to the throne in 1867 Japan was still ruled by the warrior class. He grew up surrounded by the ancient traditions of the Kyoto Palace in the company of ladies-in-waiting. Following the restoration of imperial rule by young samurai discontented with the shogunate, the young monarch adapted to a new role. It was then that the process of modernization supported by Mutsuhito began; a process that despite inevitable mistakes was quick and successful.
The author believes that the spirit of Emperor Meiji and his time is permanently present in the consciousness of today’s Japan. The efforts he put into the creation of modern Japan made him evolve from a mythical figure – raised in the traditional atmosphere of the Mikado court – into a modern monarch.
This article introduces many locations throughout Japan that today are testimony of his legacy.
MEIJI 150th: The Origin of Fundamental Values of Japan
©Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan