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  #161  
Old 11-05-2010, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post
Thanks for the photos!
Princess Aiko appears to have a serious look on all official photos.
Well, I was on the phone with a friend of mine in Japan today. She was telling me that Aiko hardly smiles but it was very good for people to see her smiling when she was with the grandchildren of the Queen of the Netherlands and at her sports day. She may be just a shy child.
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  #162  
Old 11-05-2010, 05:46 PM
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In a way, it's strange that the Allies didn't change the Emperor's title to King, because the title of Emperor implies that there's an emperor. For example, Queen Elizabeth II isn't styled as an Empress any longer.


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Oh, BTW, Japan is not any longer an empire. Since 1947, it's simply Japan or the State of Japan.
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  #163  
Old 11-05-2010, 10:09 PM
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In a way, it's strange that the Allies didn't change the Emperor's title to King, because the title of Emperor implies that there's an emperor. For example, Queen Elizabeth II isn't styled as an Empress any longer.
Queen Elizabeth II was never styled as Empress! Victoria was an Empress as she was Empress of India, up until George VI, the British kings were Emperors (of India). Once India became independent, there no longer existed a British Empress or Emperor. By the time Elizabeth became queen, India was independent and she wasn't an Empress.
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  #164  
Old 11-06-2010, 03:57 AM
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I should have said that British monarchs no longer use the title Emperor or Empress. That's what I meant.


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Queen Elizabeth II was never styled as Empress! Victoria was an Empress as she was Empress of India, up until George VI, the British kings were Emperors (of India).
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  #165  
Old 11-06-2010, 12:30 PM
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In a way, it's strange that the Allies didn't change the Emperor's title to King, because the title of Emperor implies that there's an emperor. For example, Queen Elizabeth II isn't styled as an Empress any longer.
Well, Japan was called 大日本帝国 dai nippon teikoku or the Empire of Great Japan before. However, after she was defeated (post WWII), she has been called simply 日本 Nippon/Nihon or Japan or 日本国 Nippon Koku or the State of Japan. Their passport simply says 日本国, too.

From what I have read/studied, the British government wanted to prosecute Hirohito as a war criminal and abolish the monarchy in Japan but the US thought that Hirohito was useful for their occupation that the US over-ruled and decided to keep the monarchy in Japan.

Again, from what I read/studied, some South Korean media usually refer the Emperor of Japan 日本国天皇 the Nippon Koku Tenno as 日王 iran or the Japanese King.

The title of the Japanese emperor in Japanese is 天皇 Tenno which is not really an emperor but it has more of a religious connotation similar to that of the Pope in Vatican 教皇 (kyoko). In the Imperial China, they used the term 皇帝 Kotei meaning an emperor in Japanese but the Imperial Japan hardly used the term 皇帝 to refer to the tenno.

I do not know the exact detail of what went on when they changed the style of their country but I do not think that the US had to change the title of the emperor to the king because, as far as they were concerned, it did not matter if Hirohito was an emperor or a king. The old constitution of Japan was called 大日本帝国憲法 Dai Nippon Teikoku Kempo or the Constitution of the Empire of Great Japan. The new National Constitution of Japan was named as 日本国憲法 Nippon koku Kempo or the Constitution of the State of Japan. So, the constitution regards Japan as a state rather than an empire.

It appears to me that it was a customary among the Far Eastern countries to call their monarch "emperor" regardless of the size of their countries. China, obviously, had emperors, and in Korea which had kings whilst China was an empire changed their monarch's title to "emperor" as soon as Henry Pui abdicated. In Vietnam, they called their ruler "emperor", too. Whereas Japan used the title of Tenno although to the Dutch & to the Kingdom of Korea the Tokugawa shogunate used a term 日本国王 Nippon Koku O or 日本国大君 Nippon Koku taikun to describe the Shogun (generalissimo).

I also read somewhere when Japan started the international diplomatic relationship with other countries in the late 19th century, the Japanese officials misunderstood the terms such as King/Queen that they made some mistakes and addressed the Queen Victoria as Her Highness the Queen Victoria ヴィクトリア女王殿下. It was because the translation of the word queen in Japanese is 女王 joo (or queen) but joo means an imperial princess who is remote in blood relation from the reigning emperor. After this incident, the Japanese government started addressing all the European monarchs as emperor/empress (eg. ベルギー皇帝 Berugii Kotei or the Emperor of Belgium for ベルギー国王 Berugii Koku O or the King of the Belgians.)
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  #166  
Old 11-06-2010, 12:32 PM
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I should have said that British monarchs no longer use the title Emperor or Empress. That's what I meant.
You are right. The Queen Mother Queen Elizabeth was the last Queen-Empress and her husband was the last King-Emperor. Oh, Queen Mum was so lovely - don't we miss her ?
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  #167  
Old 11-06-2010, 10:00 PM
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It would be fascinating to know what was going on in Hirohito's mind when he went from being a divine entity to an ordinary mortal sovereign almost overnight.

I remember when there were protests by WWII veterans at the visit of the Emperor of Japan to the UK as late as the 90s. Perhaps things have softened since Japan has made statements recognizing the sufferings of the other people in Asia during the time of Japanese expansion before and during WWII.

So the Emperor's religious title (tenno) is the one that he's known by in Japan. Does this mean that the people see him primarily as a Shinto high-priest, and not as a non-political national symbol? Does one role outweigh the other, in other words?

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Originally Posted by iamtheoneandonly View Post
The title of the Japanese emperor in Japanese is 天皇 Tenno which is not really an emperor but it has more of a religious connotation similar to that of the Pope in Vatican 教皇 (kyoko). In the Imperial China, they used the term 皇帝 Kotei meaning an emperor in Japanese but the Imperial Japan hardly used the term 皇帝 to refer to the tenno.


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  #168  
Old 11-07-2010, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Mermaid1962 View Post
It would be fascinating to know what was going on in Hirohito's mind when he went from being a divine entity to an ordinary mortal sovereign almost overnight.

I remember when there were protests by WWII veterans at the visit of the Emperor of Japan to the UK as late as the 90s. Perhaps things have softened since Japan has made statements recognizing the sufferings of the other people in Asia during the time of Japanese expansion before and during WWII.

So the Emperor's religious title (tenno) is the one that he's known by in Japan. Does this mean that the people see him primarily as a Shinto high-priest, and not as a non-political national symbol? Does one role outweigh the other, in other words?
It would be fascinating to know what was going on in Hirohito's mind when he went from being a divine entity to an ordinary mortal sovereign almost overnight.

Yes, it would be very interesting. There are many biographies of Hirohito around but, unlike Henry Pui who wrote about his own thoughts re: his life in his memoir after the end of the WWII, it seems very difficult to have an insight into Hirohito's mind because he was a man of very few words.

It's only my analysis but I do not think that Hirohito ever really regarded himself as "divine" in the western sense. The image of the 現人神 Arahitogami or the human god was heavily promoted by the Japanese military who were fanatic nationalists. Hirohito having been a marine biologist, I suspect that he knew that he was not a living god as in the western sense at least. If my understanding is correct, according to the Shintoism which is a pantheism, people in general may become gods after their deaths. Another thing is that, until the Meiji Restration, the Imperial House practised Buddhism as well as Shintoism. The Emperor Mutsuhito's predecessor (his father) the Emperor Komei's funeral was carried out in a Buddhist ceremony and is burried in 泉涌寺 Sennyuji or Sennyu Buddhist temple in Kyoto. It was also customary among many imperial princes and princesses to become Buddhist priests and nuns rather than establishing their own 宮家 miyake or imperial cadet branches in those days.

However, the Meiji government separated the Shintoism and the Buddhism that from that time onwards the Imperial House lost their long tradition of Buddhist practise.

I remember when there were protests by WWII veterans at the visit of the Emperor of Japan to the UK as late as the 90s. Perhaps things have softened since Japan has made statements recognizing the sufferings of the other people in Asia during the time of Japanese expansion before and during WWII.

Well, when Hirohito and Nagako state-visited the Netherlands, there was so much protest against Hirohito which disquieted Nagoko so terribly, so I read in one of the writings about Hirohito. I think it was 1998 when Akihito state-visited the UK with Michiko. They hired up the Grosvenor House Hotel on Park Lane, London, for their stay. (It's a nice hotel and I have stayed there before though I prefer nearby Dorchester Hotel.) Again, there was a protest carried out by some of the former POWs but the scale was a lot smaller than the Dutch protest against Hirohito. I think the media then was more sympathetic towards Akihito because he was only a school boy when the war was ended.

Around at that time, I met one of the former POWs from the WWII who was imprisoned in Thailand by the Japanese Imperial Army. He, too, was very sympathetic towards Akihito but his fellow ex-POWs were still very much bitter about everything Japanese.

So the Emperor's religious title (tenno) is the one that he's known by in Japan. Does this mean that the people see him primarily as a Shinto high-priest, and not as a non-political national symbol? Does one role outweigh the other, in other words?

Yes, the Emperor of Japan in Japanese is 日本国天皇 Nippon Koku Tenno. People just call him 天皇陛下 Tenno Heika (HM the Tenno) or 今上天皇 Kinjo Tenno (Present Tenno). Well, because the religion and the state are separate quite strictly by the present constitution of Japan, it is very vague re: the Tenno's function in his religious activities. The government does/can not support the Imperial House's religious activities financially that the Imperial House employ 掌典職 Shoten shoku (the office of the religious/liturgical activities) and carry out their Shinto ceremonies in their private capacity.

Re: the perception of the Tenno by the general public of Japan

People in general appear to be quite indifferent when it comes to the monarchy in Japan. However, the office of tenno seems to be understood as a constitutional monarchy by many rather than a religious figure. The National Constitution of Japan does not state the head of state of Japan that, technically/theoretically, The tenno is not a head of state of Japan either. For this reason, he does not receive military salute/honour guard. Another thing is that the tenno is not the sovereign of Japan. He remains as the symbol of the Japanese national unity and the sovereignty of Japan dwell upon individual Japanese nationals according to the Constitution of Japan. 国民主権 kokumin Shuken or the popular sovereignty is the term used to describe the situation. This very ambiguous position of Tenno seems to cause so much dispute re: its function among some politicians and others who have interests in the office. Some say that the constitution should state the Tenno as the Head of State and some argue that there is no need to specify the head of state.
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  #169  
Old 11-25-2010, 07:36 PM
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The only thing I don't believe is that Princess Aiko is slightly authist. She doesn't look as an authist. Maybe there's people who doesn't like her for her parents are too much westernized and they believed this made up story. When you doesn't like someone, you are ready to believe every bad things yu hears or reads about him/her.

Vanesa.
Look its possible people are making this up given the succession issue BUT, I want to point out that some autistic children don't look any different from any other children. Its when you talk to the child that you can start to see the differences.

Sometimes where there's smoke there's a bit of a fire. I mean did Mako and Kako have similar problems in school? One thing I will say is if Aiko is a normal child than perhaps her parents are maybe coddling her too much. Was it really necessary to make a media big deal of this? Is it necessary to pick out her friends by height. Is Aiko in a situation where she's allowed to break normal behavior rules that other kids can't. I mean don't get me wrong obviously some rules will have to be broken (like her getting chauffered) but in terms of behavior in the class, I think it should be the same. Its just hard to know. Don't get me wrong I'm NOT saying that bullying should be allowed but just saying sometimes kids need to be taught how to handle it, it needs to be addressed and then things need to go back to normal. Lots of kids were picked on in school including myself, and it was never something that had to keep me out of school for months.
I don't know if Aiko has autism or not something tells me crazies are capable of starting these type of rumors. But normally as the kid gets older its harder to keep those rules in circulation. I think its strange that they are talking about sending her to school in a foreign land. A girl that might possible be the Empress (rules could change) or who will be serving her people (doing royal duties) shouldn't be sent away from her country and family at eight years old. If the school was such a problem,surely there were other schools that could be tried out first..

The talk of sending Aiko away at eight seems very strange. At the very least you'd think they at least try another Japanese school and try maybe handling things the way they were handled for her royal cousins.
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  #170  
Old 11-28-2010, 03:23 PM
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Many kids get bullied and I would argue that Aiko could be more of a 'target' to the other kids because of who she is. Unfortunately, because of this position, the papers start discussing the issue and making 'suggestions' such as sending her abroad and we have no way of knowing whether the Crown Prince and Crown Princess are actually considering that or what their parenting skills are like.

There have been no further recent reports and hopefully she's passed through an unpleasant stage in her school life which many kids (including myself) also experience. I do agree that, if the Crown Prince couple are thinking of sending her abroad solely because of the bullying, they should find simpler solutions first, such as changing classes or, if that doesn't work, schools.

However, I wouldn't find it strange if they do send her abroad at some point. It would give her a chance to lead a more normal and independent life, regardless of her future role and those who could afford it will want the best education for their child and consider alternative options. My old school has a boarding department and there are children from parts of Asia such as Hong Kong and Singapore aged just 8 or 9 so it's not actually all that uncommon to be sent abroad that young.
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  #171  
Old 11-30-2010, 07:56 PM
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Will there be any photographs released for Aiko's 9th birthday?
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  #172  
Old 11-30-2010, 11:22 PM
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The photos released by the Imperial Household Agency of Japan on the occasion of HIH the Princess Aiko's 9th birthday.
**Pic 1** **Pic 2** - taken on November 23rd 2010.
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  #173  
Old 12-01-2010, 03:28 AM
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princess Aiko's birthday article by mainichi
Princess Aiko turns 9 years old, spends more time at school - The Mainichi Daily News
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  #174  
Old 12-01-2010, 03:50 AM
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She is so beautiful, Wow!
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  #175  
Old 12-01-2010, 04:46 AM
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Just adorable, thank you.
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  #176  
Old 12-28-2010, 05:27 AM
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Princess Aiko's caretaker resigns for 'personal reasons'

A former Gakushuin Kindergarten chief who has served as caretaker for Princess Aiko will resign from the Imperial Household Agency on Monday for personal reasons, agency officials said Sunday. Hisako Koyama, 64, who headed the Tokyo kindergarten when the 9-year-old princess attended there, has recently suffered from poor health, sources familiar with the matter said.
After her retirement from the top kindergarten post, Koyama began working for the Crown Prince's Household to be in charge of rearing the princess in April 2008 at the request of her parents, Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako, who wanted to do their best for their only child's education. - Mainichi Daily News
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  #177  
Old 12-28-2010, 11:47 AM
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All of the recent emphasis on Aiko's problems in school seems to me to have a darker purpose: the press wants to draw a parallel between Aiko's difficulties and her mother's mental state.

Is this a subtle way of saying she would not make a suitable Empress anyway, so that when the time comes there will be no objection to her being passed over?

Or is it all merely another way of emphasizing the unpopularity of this branch of the family?

It appears very strange to me that Aiko could be bullied for such a long interval; surely the school authorities would have intervened long before the news hit the press? There must be more behind this.
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  #178  
Old 12-28-2010, 03:33 PM
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I agree Mirabel.
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  #179  
Old 12-31-2010, 10:03 AM
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Thank you!
Yes, it definitely seems there is more behind this.
Is school bullying a universal problem in Japan?
(It is in the USA).

Or is this a rare case?

(I read recently that little Princess Amalia of the Netherlands was teased at school for being a princess, but apparently the situation was resolved immediately). I'm wondering why this case is so different.
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  #180  
Old 01-20-2011, 12:20 PM
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Princess Aiko walks home from school alone for first time this year

Princess Aiko, the daughter of Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako, walked home from school by herself for the first time since the start of the third school term, it has been learned.
On the morning of Jan. 18, Crown Princess Masako accompanied Princess Aiko to school by car, but the Crown Princess had a parents' meeting to attend after classes before going back to the Crown Prince's Residence.
Princess Aiko was absent from the opening ceremony for the third school term on Jan. 11 but attended homeroom later the same day. Princess Aiko has usually been accompanied by Crown Princess Masako to and from school, attending some classes. - Mainichi Daily
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