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  #41  
Old 04-01-2012, 04:34 PM
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How did the empress have a hard time as a crown princess? And who is the lady next to her which she carries naruhito ?
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  #42  
Old 04-01-2012, 04:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiaraC View Post
Michiko with new-born Naruhito (The lady at her side gives you an idea of Michikos hard life as young crown princess... )
Akihito and Michiko with new-born Naruhito
Beautiful pictures, especially the second one.
If you didn't know who they were, you would just see doting parents elated at the birth of their first-born child.

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Originally Posted by Grandduchess24 View Post
How did the empress have a hard time as a crown princess? And who is the lady next to her which she carries naruhito ?
Like Princess Masako, the Empress suffered from extreme pressure by the Imperial Household Agency. In addition, Michiko had very strained relationships with her in-laws; it was said that the Emperor and especially Empress Kojun resented the fact the Crown Prince married a commoner. The pressure on the young Princess was so intense that she suffered from nervous breakdown in 1960's, even temporarily losing her voice. There are also rumours that in desperate attempt to break free from the controlling IHA and in-laws, Michiko Michiko underwent an abortion at about the same time.
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  #43  
Old 04-01-2012, 05:15 PM
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Thanks, Artemisia, you beat me to it! But I think our explanations complement each other well.

I guess the lady at Michikos side is one of her ladies-in-waiting and imo she looks rather grim.

When Michiko entered the imperial family, she became, not unlike her daughter-in-law Masako, the centre and the victim of a political struggle. On one hand, there was for example Dr. Shinzo Koizumi, who supervised the Crown Prince's education for many years, who wanted to modernize the monarchy and to give the imperial family a new, post-war image. He encouraged the prince to marry Michiko Shoda. But there were also those who were longing for the prewar times and wanted to get back to the olden days and the old ways. They strongly resented Michiko coming from a commoner background.

One of the most influential women of Japans high society of the time, Itsuko Nashimoto, wrote in her diary (27th November 1958): Today we get the news: Michiko Shoda is to become the wife of Crown Prince Akihito. Excitement and uproar in the whole country. Broadcasting and television are full of the engagement news. I feel angry and sick. Japan cannot be rescued, Japan is rotten.

Especially Empress Nagako and her courtiers harrassed the young crown princess. The "commoner princess" who cooked for her family, played with her children and dressed fashionably, enraged those who believed in a dignified and unapproachably remote emperor. A good friend of Akihito later told the story of Michiko having been falsely informed (on purpose) that the dress code for an evening engagement would be kimono. But when Michiko arrived she found out that everybody was wearing Western dress. She was the only one with the wrong outfit.

In their first year as married couple, Akihito and Michiko also tried to get rid of a member of their staff because they suspected her to be a spy for Empress Nagako. But they were not successful.
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  #44  
Old 04-15-2012, 02:01 PM
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Crown Prince Akihito along with his elegant young wife

The couple with their children (above left: Michiko, Naruhito and a little tiger, below the family with newborn Prince Fumihito (today Akishino))
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(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperors statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
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  #45  
Old 04-28-2012, 04:33 PM
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Then-Crown Prince Akihito and then-Crown Princess Michiko with their sons (1966)

Then-Crown Princess Michiko with sleeping Naruhito

Then-Crown Prince Akihito and then-Crown Princess Michiko with their children (in the eighties)

Princes Naruhito and Fumihito having fun
1
2
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(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperors statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
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  #46  
Old 04-28-2012, 07:38 PM
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Who is Prince Fumihito?

Oh my! Shades of Du Maurier's "Rebecca"!!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiaraC View Post
A good friend of Akihito later told the story of Michiko having been falsely informed (on purpose) that the dress code for an evening engagement would be kimono. But when Michiko arrived she found out that everybody was wearing Western dress. She was the only one with the wrong outfit.
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  #47  
Old 04-28-2012, 07:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Mermaid1962 View Post
Who is Prince Fumihito?
Prince Akishino.
Fumihito is his first name, while Akishino is actually his title. In the same way Prince Masahito - Emperor Akihito's only brother, is mostly known as Prince Hitachi (his title and the name of the branch of the Imperial House he established).
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  #48  
Old 04-29-2012, 09:51 AM
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Exactly, Artemisia.

The system of names of the imperial family members is actually quite confusing. They have a given name, children of an emperor have childhood titles (as sort of a last name to be used during their childhood because the imperial family (the main branch I mean) does not have a last name). Princes who branch out will be given branch titles later, and finally the emperors and empresses are given posthumous names. Usually I try to stick to one name only – for example I use to call the father of the present emperor “Emperor Hirohito” although this is not quite correct. I should call him by his posthumous name the “Showa Emperor” but I do not want to confuse people.

I somehow feel though that I cannot call Prince Akishino “Prince Akishino” when I am talking about his childhood and youth because he received the title Prince Akishino and permission to start a new branch of the imperial family only upon his marriage on 29 June 1990. When I talk about his life before that time I could call him by his given name, Prince Fumihito (which usually do) or I could call him Prince Aya which was his childhood title. But as the concept of a childhood title would need some explanatory remarks, too, I usually stick to the given name. (Aiko, for example, has the childhood title “Princess Toshi”, her father was called “Prince Hiro” and her aunt “Princess Nori” (before her marriage). The children of Prince Akishino do not have childhood titles. They do not need them, because they are Mako of Akishino, Kako of Akishino etc.)

It is admittedly complicated. But it could be still worse. Lets rejoice that nowadays the imperial family members at least HAVE names and that we may use them. In former times, it was thought very impolite at Japans imperial court to call people by their personal names. Accordingly, translators have a very hard time translating the famous novel “The tale of Genji” as its author, noblewoman Murasaki Shikibu, never mentions the personal names of her characters.

Quote:
Another problem is that naming people was considered rude in Heian court society, so none of the characters are named within the work; instead, the narrator refers to men often by their rank or their station in life, and to women often by the color of their clothing, or by the words used at a meeting, or by the rank of a prominent male relative. This results in different appellations for the same character depending on the chapter.
Wikipedia

It is easy to understand that this may cause a lot of confusion as the person who is called “the crown prince” on page 50 is not necessarily the same as the person who is called “the crown prince” on page 200. (And in case of women who are referred to by the colour of their clothing obviously things will get even worse... )

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mermaid1962 View Post
Oh my! Shades of Du Maurier's "Rebecca"!!!
In a way yes, only that in Crown Princess Michiko case it was not just the housekeeper but her mother-in-law along with her large entourage of snobbish courtiers. (On the other hand, they at least did not try to kill her as far as I am informed.)
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(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperors statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
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  #49  
Old 04-29-2012, 05:13 PM
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Pictures and letters

Michko lived with my grandparents when she was young. I have many pictures of her and letters from her to my grandmother. If I have the story correct my grandmother was her chaperone when she was courted by the then Prince. Does anyone know an address I can send a letter to her?
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  #50  
Old 04-29-2012, 05:53 PM
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Oh I see, like the BRF calling the second tier "First Name of Wales" or "First Name of Kent".

Otherwise, it is confusing.

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Originally Posted by ChiaraC View Post
The children of Prince Akishino do not have childhood titles. They do not need them, because they are Mako of Akishino, Kako of Akishino etc.)
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  #51  
Old 04-30-2012, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by mhedgcock View Post
Michko lived with my grandparents when she was young. I have many pictures of her and letters from her to my grandmother. If I have the story correct my grandmother was her chaperone when she was courted by the then Prince. Does anyone know an address I can send a letter to her?
You could write to the Imperial Household Agency. They give this address on their website:
The Imperial Household Agency :
1-1 Chiyoda, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan 100-8111

But, frankly, I doubt that the empress would ever get your letter.
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(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperors statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
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  #52  
Old 05-24-2012, 12:33 PM
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Lovely couple !

Japan Fact Sheet - Japan Portal[imperial]/6/

There was a tea party for the PIF member states at the palace today.

www.yomiuri.co.jp/zoom/20120524-OYT9I00939.htm
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  #53  
Old 05-26-2012, 02:10 PM
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Emperor and Empress 26 May 2012

ե֥饤ȣǯ ŷġĹξŲ - goo ˥塼
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  #54  
Old 05-26-2012, 06:30 PM
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I don't mean to sound demeaning or patronizing to the Imperial Couple, but I must say that I find them adorable--like dolls. They're so tiny and pleasant-looking.
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  #55  
Old 05-27-2012, 06:53 AM
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Emperor planting a tree in Yamaguchi yesterday and the Akihito & Michiko - a happy couple.

????? - ?

http://news.goo.ne.jp/photo/kyodo/na...701001764.html
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  #56  
Old 05-27-2012, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mariaantoniapia View Post
yesterday and the Akihito & Michiko - a happy couple.
That is a really cute pic.

Crown Prince Akihito
Original caption:Heir to Chrysanthemum Throne. Tokyo, Japan: In morning clothes, Prince Akihito Tsugu-No-Miya, 18-year-old son of Emperor Hirohito of Japan, who today was formally proclaimed heir-apparent to the Chrysanthemum Throne of Nippon in a ritual going back for some 1,200 years. This photo was made as the crown prince prepared for the ceremony of transition into manhood. November 10, 1952.

OCTOBER 05, 1971: A portrait of Crown Prince Akihito on October 5, 1971 in Tokyo, Japan.

Michiko Shoda: engagement press conference

Akihito and Michiko as young couple

Akihito and Michiko playing tennis

Akihito and Michiko with their sons, 1966

Emperor Akihito and Queen Elizabeth 2012

and sixty years ago...
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(Following recent incidents, I would like to refer anybody who may think the emperors statement obvious or redundant to this thread, post #682.)
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  #57  
Old 05-27-2012, 10:53 PM
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This picture is a perfect example of why I like them so much. They seem to enjoy each other's company so much. Sweet.


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  #60  
Old 06-02-2012, 04:52 AM
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Akihito & Michiko



Akihito & Michiko in Hawaii



Akihito & Michiko visting the Tsunami victims

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