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Old 11-06-2012, 12:49 PM
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The ōke were branches of the Japanese Imperial Family created from branches of the Fushimi-no-miya house. All but one of the ōke were formed by the descendants of Prince Fushimi Kuniye (1802–1872). The ōke were stripped of their membership in the Imperial Family by the American Occupation Authorities in October 1947. (Wikipedia)

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Princess Tomiko Kitashirakawa (1862–1936), wife of the second head of the Kitashirakawa-no-miya collateral imperial branch
The princess did not have any children but her husband had five sons from various concubines.

Wedding of the 4th head of the Kitashirakawa-no-miya collateral branch, Prince Nagahisa Kitashirakawa (1910–1940) to Sachiko Tokugawa, the daughter of Baron Yoshikuni Tokugawa. The couple had a son and a daughter.
In 1969, Princess Kitashirakawa entered the service of the Imperial Household Agency. She served for many years as the chief of the ladies-in-waiting to Empress Nagako, Emperor Akihito´s mother.

Princess Fusako (1890–1974) (left) and Princess Masako (1888–1940) (right)

Princess Masako was the sixth daughter of Emperor Meiji of Japan and one of his consorts, Lady Sachiko. She held the childhood appellation "Tsune no miya" (Princess Tsune). Emperor Meiji authorized her future husband, Prince Tsunehisa, to start a new princely house, the house of Takeda, in March 1906, largely to provide a household with suitable status for Princess Masako. Prince and Princess Takeda had a son and a daughter.

Princess Fusako was the seventh daughter of Emperor Meiji, and Lady Sachiko. She held the childhood appellation "Kane no miya" (Princess Kane). On April 29, 1909, Princess Kane married Prince Naruhisa Kitashirakawa (1887–1923), the third head of the house of Kitashirakawa-no-miya. Prince Naruhisa Kitashirakawa was the brother of the above-mentioned Prince Tsunehisa, the husband of Princess Masako. Prince and Princess Kitashirakawa had one son, Prince Nagahisa Kitashirakawa (1910–1940), and three daughters.
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"In order to make the area inhabitable again, we face the difficult problem of removing radiation." - Emperor Akihito

(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperor´s statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
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Old 11-08-2012, 02:38 AM
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"former collateral"?????????

while these families are no longer part of the imperial family legally, they are still related, thus nothing genealogically "former" about them
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Old 11-09-2012, 08:20 AM
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I understand where you come from. But, in my opinion, it would be highly misleading to speak simply of "collateral branches" of the imperial family because that would give the impression to most people that they still count as royals, would be eligible for the throne in case of emergency etc. although that is not the case.

Besides, there are lots of people in today´s Japan who are genealogically related to the imperial family, and not just in the female line. There must be lots of descendants of "surplus" imperial princes of former centuries who had to give up their imperial status when they married and had to "descend" to being a nobleman. Nobody would even think of considering them members of the imperial family although they are genealogically related all right. But they have lost their status by law, just as have in 1947 all the members of the - until then - collateral branches of the imperial family.

It is a rather ancient (and common) custom in Japan to sometimes divest people of the status they were born into, and it was indeed a very necessary tradition in times when the use of concubines would produce sometimes much more offspring than was ever needed for the succession.

According to my knowledge, there is no parallel to this in the European tradition - except maybe in cases of morganatic marriages where possible offspring may have explicitly been excluded from the succession. But this is, obviously, another story as the person concerned would also have had the choice of entering an equal marriage whereas "surplus" sons of the Japanese nobility and also of the imperial house did not have a choice in the matter.

So, the main question here is: what makes a family? The Japanese answer to this is certainly a bit different from the one that is usually given in the context of European monarchies.
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"In order to make the area inhabitable again, we face the difficult problem of removing radiation." - Emperor Akihito

(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperor´s statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
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