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2002 articles 1991 articles

A glimpse above the clouds: the Japanese Court in 1859

Hamish Todd

Abstract

THOSE of us seeing pictures of the recent enthronement of the 125th Emperor of
Japan on television or in the newspapers might have been forgiven for thinking that we
were seeing a Heian picture scroll come to life. The ceremonies serve to remind us of the
great antiquity of the Japanese monarchy and of the traditions that surround it. Ancient
though its origins may be, however, over the course of its long history, the imperial
institution has undergone great changes both of form and of substance.

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