Crown Prince Naruhito and Family: News & Photos 1

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Originally posted by jun5@Sep 4th, 2003 - 10:06 am

Princess Masako returned to the her parent's home for the first time in 9 years.

with Crown prince Naruhito, Princess Aiko and her parents infront of her parents' home in Tokyo.
Thank you for the picture jun5. But why had Princess Masako not been home for 9 years? That seems like a VERY long time to me! (I remember in university missing home if I didn't go home once a month, let alone 9 years!) Do Masako's family live far away from the royal palace? I hope that even though Masako had not been home for 9 years her parents and siblings were able to visit her a lot and to spend time with little AiKo.

Princess Aiko Visists Her Maternal Grandparents at Home

Twenty-one-month-old Princess Aiko of Japan made her first visit to the home of her maternal grandparents this week. Accompanied by her mum, Crown Princess Masako, the toddler was warmly welcomed by Hisashi and Yumiko Owada at their Tokyo residence.

The release of the intimate photos of the visit was further evidence of the new openness of approach adopted by the Japanese royal family in recent times.

Although Japan's laws of succession do not currently allow a female to ascend to the Chrysanthemum Throne, Aiko's birth sparked much debate on the subject. Her parents had been trying to conceive for eight years before Crown Princess Masako suffered a miscarriage in 1999, making Aiko's arrival in 2001 - after the princess was treated by one of Japan's leading fertility specialists - an especially joyous occasion.

The fact remains, however, that no male heir has been born into the family for nearly four decades, leading to the subject of female accession becoming even more pressing.

"This is a politically sensitive issue, so we can't publicly admit we are researching the possibility," a senior palace source has said. "But as a matter of fact we are, and we would be negligent not to."

Should Crown Prince Naruhito, 43, and 39-year-old Masako not have a male offspring in the next few years, perhaps resulting in constitutional change, it would transform the status of women in one of the world's most conservative societies.

If she does end up ascending to the throne, Aiko would be the first Empress in two and a half centuries to reign over the world's oldest hereditary monarchy.


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Thank you for answering my question jun5. :flower:

One more ... This wasn't the first time that Masako's parents have met their granddaughter Aiko was it? They did come and visit Masako in the hospital or visisted Masko and Aiko soon after, too, right?
Oh, Aiko's very cute. I'd like to squish those little cheeks..haha, oh, fat babies are the best. What is her full name? Does she have any other given names?
Originally posted by moosey60@Sep 19th, 2003 - 7:10 pm
Oh, Aiko's very cute. I'd like to squish those little cheeks..haha, oh, fat babies are the best. What is her full name? Does she have any other given names?
Her formal name is Her Imperial Highness Princess Aiko, and The Parsonal Title for Young Members : Princess Toshi (Toshi-no-Miya).
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Hi there :p !

It just came to my mind when I read the news about princess's first visit to her parents in 9 years, that she couldn't visit them probably simply because, besides all other small reasons, the imperial family didn't make it easier to do so.
I am sure it's something to do with old Japanese custom(old like almost millenium old). That is, when a woman gets married, it's considered that she becomes a member of her husband's family, not anymore of her own parents'. If she gets lucky, she is given a "vacation" once a year or so, to spend a few days with her parents, but often times it happened that a wife never got to see her parents.
Such custom was practiced for centuries not just among imperial families, but also among all the aristocrats and some other middle class and even lower classes.
If anybody wants to have a grip of such way of life, it would be a good start to read "Genji Monogatari(*)".
Of course, nowadays wifes can freely visit their parents(hm.. maybe not that freely, but.. you know what I mean). But I think at least the imperial family still strictly follows lots of those rules even up to this date. In a way I feel sorry. I'm quite sure the princess wants to spend much more time with her family and also let the parents enjoy their granddaughter. Oh, I myself have a daughter 6 months yonger than Aiko. So I know what it feels like.

*"The Genji Tale(A tale of Genji)"(writte in 1001-1005) by Murasaki Shikibu. A story of whole life of prince Genji. Fiction. The oldest long(multi-volumed) novel in the world.
Hi, Jun5.


I am also a Japanese, however, I don't live in Japan(I live somewhere in Europe), so I sometimes check news about Japan on the net. There I accidentally found this page.
I don't say I am an extreme fan of imperial family. I just check once in a while how are the little ones are growing.

My impression nowadays is, Princess Masako seems much happier with her little girl than before, maybe bacause of a big task to be a mother, instead of just a wife of a prince. It's good that it keep her busy.

Ryo :p
Hi, jun5, again!

The reason I got interested in this page is because the Princess has a daughter of same(close) age as my daughter, and also she is a graduate of university in the USA, just like myself. So there's a similarity. My husband is not a Prince(in a way he is a prince, you know), though.
I can more or less imagine the happiness of the Princess having a daughter, but I can't imagine at all how it is like to be the wife of a Prince, and also to be a member of the imperial family. I will never know it, but it sounds like a tough duty. That's why I checked the photos and articles about her.

I noticed you have a lot of photos and infomation about the Imperial family. I think nobody on this page knows more about it than you do. Keep posting! I enjoy them all.

ryo :grrr:
Hi, jun5!

Thank you for replying to me personally. Ohenji wazawaza arigatou.
I was just checking some of your posts on other topics. I think your english is very good. Since you are the most enthusiastic one on this page, I am sure you are improving your English by writing a lot here.
Eigo ganbattene!

How do you get all those photos? Maybe you have all the published books and photo albums?

I agree the fact the imperial system is extremely conservative. To tell the truth, some things I cannot stand when I look at them. One good example, is the short video you posted(the one prince & princess Akishino are visiting somewhere). All those guards(otsukino mono) and other guests(I assume) in dark suits bowing constantly here and there.... It looks rather sickening. There's not even one moment that are relaxing. :angry:
My guess is , Imperial Family Household wants to keep the family some kind of "superhuman" by treating them so unnaturally and also by forcing them to follow the strict customs. This must be of course so that to keep the popularity of the family. Because what? Popularity is the only key to let the family going, since today the emperor holds no political power. In other words, if they change things too liberal, they'll loose the popularity as "a special family" and it might endanger the existence of imperial family itself.
Do you know what I mean? Chotto majimesugirukana?

I always have some little(kudaranai) questions about the imperial family. It'll be great if you know any answer.
--Do they ever(especially the princesses) wear one same outfit for more than a few times in public? Do they get new clothes and costumes very often? Who designs the dresses and suits? What happens to the outfits that are old and out of fashion? Do they keep them in their closets? but there are so many! If they do keep them, how can it be possible!?

Have a good one!
Hi, jun5,

Thank you for the answers. I guess I haven't checked the news about the family often enough to notice that they do wear the same clothes often.
That's true about Masako's designer. She should wear what's in fashion. Her designer seems to repeat the style of 80's and early 90's, which is rather formal and wide(in shape), and disappointing to look at. I think the style nowadays is the comeback of 70's, so probably the IF Household think it's a crazy style. But there are many cool and elegant style that are not crazy at all, you know. They are :hardhead: Atama katasugiru!
I also noticed that Masako and Kiko haven't worn their hats lately, and they do look imformal. They must be enjoying some freedom on their head without a hat. Maybe this way they are trying to rebel against those heardheaded rules.

Do you have any interest in royal families from other countries?
Hi, jun5,

Wow, you responded me so quickly! I was a little busy to check the forum because my family is coming to visit me end of this month and I have to arrange things around here. They will meet my daughter for the first time! It's very uncomfortable for a small child to fly long distance all the way to Japan, so I never even thought about trying it.

Anyway back to the topic.
I totally agree that you say, the IF should spend the same tax money for some pleasant looking outfit instead of the outdated uncool ones. Is there any way to send some suggestions to the IF Household? Don't they try to do what people wants? It makes no sense that they ignore people's opinion because after all they are the ones who pay the tax.

I practically have no knowledge about royal families from other countries. I knew about Lady Di but after that nothing really. I should check on this forum more to see if any of them interests me. For me, the European princesses rather look similar, so more interesting are some exotic county royals.

One question, is there any candidate husband for princess Sayako? To tell the truth, they also should think about her dresses to be more fascinating...

Some short comments related to nothing.

Aiko looks just like her father, I think. I see more similarity between the prince and Aiko, however, I am thinking since Masako is tall, Aiko might become tall when she grows up. Which is good because the imperial family so far is rather short people.

Hi, jun5! :p

I'm back! I want to check the forum more often, but not I'm so busy with my private matters and I just don't have time. Chotto zannen.
I'm also glad that other people in the forum understands what's going on with the fashion among the IF.
So it looks like foreign royal people don't have such extreme strict rules like the Japanese ones do. They have much more freedom, and more relaxed.

OK, I have one question. How did Naruhito and Masako meet?
Talk to you soon!
Hi, jun5!

Thank you for your reply. Actually, my family hasn't arrived yet. They are coming on the very last day of this month, so I still have enough time to clean around the house. Souji ni sentaku, futon mo hoshite...
Is that photo of yourself posted at the head of messages? You look beautiful!

I saw the photos you posted in the Happy Birthday Empress forum. So many photos of her you have! Quite amazing. You are the hero in this forum.
I think those photos are interesting. What makes it most interesting, is she was chosen by the Emperor himself because he liked her, and also she was beautiful. If it was a normal-looking woman chosen by the Kunaichou, nobody would care so much. She was like a small revolution in the Imperial family, wasn't she?

Thank you for your A to my Q.
I didn't know Sayako was already 34. She is just a little bit older than me! Toshi ga barerukana?:D Anyway, I am sure Sayako must be a nice person, but if they don't do something about her(change hairstyle, dress...), it will only be more and more difficult to find a husband. It's definately the time to change her appearance!

I wanted to ask about the Crown couple becasue once I heard a rumor that their marriaged was kind of arranged by the Kunaichou. But if they met at some occation and liked each other, I think that most ideal.

OK, I will talk to you soon!
What did Empress study in Europe before she got married?
Great pictures, jun5! :flower:

The picture of Masako going down the slide with her daughter is too sweet for words. If you didn't know that she would one day be the Emperess of Japan, you'd think she was another "ordinary" doting mother.

As Aiko gets older, I think she takes on more of her mom's qualities. She looks very much like her father but I think she has her mom's lovely smile.

Good to hear from you again!
It's quite impressive about the Empress. I didn't know the details about her quality and education, but my grandmother often mentions that Shoda Michiko-san is well educated and is from a very good family. I can imagine at that time it was such a difficult decision to marry into the imperial family.
My grandma also told me that the Empress was often booed in her new family after getting married(have you ever heard about it?), because she is from a normal family(clan), just like the story of Kiritsubo in Genjimonogatari. Of course, her case was not that bad, and as a matter of fact she is till now leading a happy life as you already know. :p

In the US, people do know generally that there is a Emperor in Japan, but I don't think they know well about him and his family. The more known is Hirohito, through the memory of WWII, I suppose.
The new photos are wonderful. thanks for posting, many new ones I have never seen before! :heart:
Wonderful pictures, jun5. Little Aiko gets sweeter looking with each day. There is a picture of her on the fourth page of her waving that makes my heart melt. What an adorable little girl with such doting parents. She has them both wrapped around her finger!
He looks pretty happy teaching---wouldn't be bad for his ego probably if he had a regular occupation, or guest lectured, don't you think?
Not being facetious here, but just how busy could his official duties keep him? I guess there are things that go on that we don't hear about.
I hope we get to see some nice new photos of her!
From NHK,

Isn't she sweet!


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