Prince Ōkuma Shigenobu was a Japanese politician in the Empire of Japan and the 8th and 17th Prime Minister of Japan. Ōkuma was an early advocate of Western science and culture in Japan, founder of Waseda University. Ōkuma was born Hachitarō, the first son of an artillery officer, in Saga, Hizen Province in 1838. During his early years, his education consisted of the study of Confucian literature and derivative works such as Hagakure. However, he left school in 1853 to move to a Dutch studies institution; the Dutch school was merged with the provincial school in 1861, Ōkuma took up a lecturing position there shortly afterward. Ōkuma sympathized with the sonnō jōi movement, which aimed at expelling the Europeans who had started to arrive in Japan. However, he advocated mediation between the rebels in Chōshū and the Tokugawa shogunate in Edo. During a trip to Nagasaki, Ōkuma met a Dutch missionary named Guido Verbeck, who taught him the English language and provided him with copies of the New Testament and the American Declaration of Independence.
These works are said to have affected his political thinking profoundly, encouraged him to support efforts to abolish the existing feudal system and work toward the establishment of a constitutional government. Ōkuma traveled between Nagasaki and Kyoto in the following years and became active in the Meiji Restoration. In 1867, together with Soejima Taneomi, he planned to recommend resignation to the shōgun Tokugawa Yoshinobu. Leaving Saga Domain without permission, they went to Kyoto, where the shōgun resided. However, Ōkuma and his companions were sent back to Saga, they were subsequently sentenced to one month imprisonment. Following the Boshin War of the Meiji Restoration in 1868, Okuma was placed in charge of foreign affairs for the new Meiji government. At this time, he negotiated with British diplomat, Sir Harry Smith Parkes on the ban of Christianity and insisted on maintaining the government's persecution on Catholics in Nagasaki. In 1873, the Japanese government removed the ban on Christianity.
He was soon given an additional post as head of Japan's monetary reform program. He made use of his close contacts with Inoue Kaoru to secure a position in the central government in Tokyo, he was elected to the first Diet of Japan in 1870 and soon became Minister of Finance, in which capacity he instituted property and taxation reforms that aided Japan's early industrial development. He unified the nation’s currency, created the national mint, a separate Minister of Industry. In 1882, Ōkuma co-founded the Constitutional Progressive Party which soon attracted a number of other leaders, including Ozaki Yukio and Inukai Tsuyoshi; that same year, Ōkuma founded the Tokyo Senmon Gakkō in the Waseda district of Tokyo. The school became Waseda University, one of the country's most prominent institutions of higher education. Despite their continuing animosity, Itō again appointed Ōkuma to the post of Foreign Minister in February 1888 to deal with the difficult issue of negotiation revisions to the "unequal treaties" with the Western powers.
The treaty he negotiated was perceived by the public as too conciliatory to the Western powers, created considerable controversy. Ōkuma was attacked by a member of the Gen'yōsha in 1889, his right leg was blown off by a bomb. He retired from politics at that time. However, he returned to politics in 1896 by reorganizing the Rikken Kaishintō into the Shimpotō. In 1897, Matsukata Masayoshi convinced Ōkuma to participate in his second administration as Foreign Minister and Agriculture and Commerce Minister, but again, he remained in office for only one year before resigning. In June 1898, Ōkuma co-founded the Kenseitō, by merging his Shimpotō with Itagaki Taisuke's Jiyūtō, was appointed by the Emperor to form the first partisan cabinet in Japanese history; the new cabinet survived for only four months. Ōkuma remained in charge of the party until 1908. After his political retirement, Ōkuma became president of Waseda University and chairman of the Japan Civilization Society, from which scholars' many translations of European and American texts were published.
He gathered support for Japan's first expedition to Antarctica. At the request of the Emperor, Ōkuma returned to politics during the constitutional crisis of 1914, when the government of Yamamoto Gonnohyōe was forced to resign in the wake of the Siemens scandal. Ōkuma organized his supporters, together with the Rikken Dōshikai and Chūseikai organizations, into a coalition cabinet. The 2nd Ōkuma administration was noted for its active foreign policy; that year, Japan declared war on the Empire of Germany, thus entering World War I on the Allied side. In 1915, Ōkuma and Katō Takaaki drafted the Twenty-One Demands on China. However, Ōkuma’s second administration was short-lived. Following the Ōura scandal, Ōkuma's cabinet lost popular support, its members held mass resignation in October 1915. In 1916, after a long argument with the Genrō, Ōkuma resigned as well, retired from politics permanently, although he remained a member of the Upper House of the Diet of Japan until 1922, he was awarded the Grand Cor
Satsuma Domain Kagoshima Domain, was a Japanese domain of the Edo period. It is associated with the provinces of Satsuma, Ōsumi and Hyūga in modern-day Kagoshima Prefecture and Miyazaki Prefecture on the island of Kyūshū. In the han system, Satsuma was a political and economic abstraction based on periodic cadastral surveys and projected agricultural yields. In other words, the domain was defined in terms of kokudaka, not land area; this was different from the feudalism of the West. The domain was ruled from Kagoshima Castle, the core of what became the city of Kagoshima, its kokudaka was assessed at the second highest kokudaka after that of Kaga Domain. The Shimazu family controlled Satsuma province for four centuries prior to the beginning of the Edo period. Despite being chastised by Toyotomi Hideyoshi in his 1587 Kyūshū Campaign, forced back to Satsuma, they remained one of the most powerful clans in the archipelago. During the decisive battle of Sekigahara in 1600, the Shimazu fought on the losing side.
Satsuma was one of the most powerful feudal domains in Tokugawa Japan. It was controlled throughout the Edo period by the tozama daimyō of the Shimazu clan. Since the mid-15th century, Satsuma fought with the Ryukyu Kingdom for control of the Northern Ryukyu Islands, which lie southwest of Japan. In 1609, Shimazu Iehisa requested permission from the shogunate to invade Ryukyu. After a three-month war which met stiff resistance, Satsuma captured the Ryukyuan capital of Shuri and King Shō Nei. In the ensuing peace treaty, Satsuma annexed the Amami and Tokara Islands, demanded tribute, forced the King and his descendants to pledge loyalty to Satsuma's daimyō. For the remainder of the Edo period, Satsuma influenced their politics and dominated their trading policies to take advantage of Ryukyu's tributary status with China; as strict maritime prohibitions were imposed upon much of Japan beginning in the 1630s, Satsuma's ability to enjoy a trade in Chinese goods, information, via Ryukyu, provided it a distinct and important, if not unique, role in the overall economy and politics of the Tokugawa state.
The degree of economic benefits enjoyed by Satsuma, the degree of their influence in Ryukyu, are subjects debated by scholars, but the political prestige and influence gained through this relationship is not questioned. The Shimazu continually made efforts to emphasize their unique position as the only feudal domain to claim an entire foreign kingdom as its vassal, engineered repeated increases to their own official Court rank, in the name of maintaining their power and prestige in the eyes of Ryukyu. In 1871, Emperor Meiji abolished the Han system, the following year informed King Shō Tai that he was designated "Domain Head of Ryukyu Domain", transferring Satsuma's authority over the country to Tokyo. Though not the wealthiest han in terms of kokudaka, Satsuma remained among the wealthiest and most powerful domains throughout the Edo period; this derived not only from their connection to Ryukyu, but from the size and productive wealth of Satsuma province itself, from their extreme distance from Edo, thus from the shōgun's armies.
The Shimazu exercised their influence to exact from the shogunate a number of special exceptions. Satsuma was granted an exception to the shogunate's limit of one castle per domain, a policy, meant to restrict the military strength of the domains, they received special exceptions from the shogunate in regard to the policy of sankin-kōtai, another policy meant to restrict the wealth and power of the daimyō. Under this policy, every feudal lord was mandated to travel to Edo at least once a year, to spend some portion of the year there, away from his domain and his power base; the Shimazu were granted permission to make this journey only once every two years. These exceptions thus allowed Satsuma to gain more power and wealth relative to the majority of other domains. Though arguably opposed to the shogunate, Satsuma was one of the strictest domains in enforcing particular policies. Christian missionaries were seen as a serious threat to the power of the daimyō, the peace and order of the domain.
The ban on smuggling unsurprisingly, was not so enforced, as the domain gained from trade performed along its shores, some ways away from Nagasaki, where the shogunate monopolized commerce. In the 1830s, Satsuma used its illegal Okinawa trade to rebuild its finances under Zusho Hirosato; the Satsuma daimyō of the 1850s, Shimazu Nariakira, was interested in Western thought and technology, sought to open the country. At the time, contacts with Westerners increased particularly for Satsuma, as Western ships landed in the Ryukyus and sought not only trade, but formal diplomatic relations. To increase his influence in the shogunate, Nariakira engineered a marriage between Shōgun Tokugawa Iesada and his adopted daughter, Atsu-hime. In 1854, the first year of Iesada's reign, Commodore Perry landed in Japan and forced an end to the isolation policy of the shogunate. However, the treaties signed between Japan and the western powers the Harris Treaty of 1858, put Japan at a serious disadvantage. In the same year, both Iesada and Nariakira died.
Nariakira named Shimazu Tadayoshi, as his successor. As Tadayoshi was still a child, his father, Shimazu Hisamitsu
The daimyō were powerful Japanese feudal lords who, until their decline in the early Meiji period, ruled most of Japan from their vast, hereditary land holdings. In the term, dai means "large", myō stands for myōden, meaning private land. Subordinate to the shōgun, nominally to the Emperor and the kuge, daimyō were powerful feudal rulers from the 10th century to the middle 19th century in Japan. From the Shugo of the Muromachi period through the Sengoku to the daimyō of the Edo period, the rank had a long and varied history; the backgrounds of daimyō varied considerably. The term daimyō sometimes refers to the leading figures of such clans called "Lord", it was though not from these warlords that a shōgun arose or a regent was chosen. Daimyō hired samurai to guard their land and they paid the samurai in land or food as few could afford to pay samurai in money; the daimyō era ended soon after the Meiji Restoration with the adoption of the prefecture system in 1871. The shugo daimyō were the first group of men to hold the title daimyō.
They arose from among the shugo during the Muromachi period. The shugo-daimyō held not only military and police powers, but economic power within a province, they accumulated these powers throughout the first decades of the Muromachi period. Major shugo-daimyō came from the Shiba and Hosokawa clans, as well as the tozama clans of Yamana, Ōuchi, Akamatsu; the greatest ruled multiple provinces. The Ashikaga shogunate required the shugo-daimyō to reside in Kyoto, so they appointed relatives or retainers, called shugodai, to represent them in their home provinces; some of these in turn came to reside in Kyoto, appointing deputies in the provinces. The Ōnin War was a major uprising. During this and other wars of the time, kuni ikki, or provincial uprisings, took place as locally powerful warriors sought independence from the shugo-daimyō; the deputies of the shugo-daimyō, living in the provinces, seized the opportunity to strengthen their position. At the end of the fifteenth century, those shugo-daimyō who succeeded remained in power.
Those who had failed to exert control over their deputies fell from power and were replaced by a new class, the sengoku-daimyō, who arose from the ranks of the shugodai and ji-samurai. Among the sengoku daimyō were many, shugo-daimyō, such as the Satake, Takeda, Rokkaku, Ōuchi, Shimazu. New to the ranks of the daimyō were the Asakura, Nagao, Miyoshi, Chōsokabe, Jimbō, Hatano and Matsunaga; these came from the ranks of their deputies. Additional sengoku-daimyō such as the Mōri, Ryūzōji arose from the ji-samurai; the lower officials of the shogunate and rōnin, provincial officials, kuge gave rise to sengoku-daimyō. The Battle of Sekigahara in the year 1600 marked the beginning of the Edo period. Shōgun Tokugawa Ieyasu reorganized 200 daimyō and their territories into han, which were assessed by rice production; those heading han assessed at 10,000 koku or more were considered daimyō. Ieyasu categorized the daimyō according to their relation to the ruling Tokugawa family: the shinpan were related to the Tokugawa.
The shinpan were collaterals of Ieyasu, such as the Matsudaira, or descendants of Ieyasu other than in the main line of succession. Several shinpan, including the Tokugawa of Owari and Mito, as well as the Matsudaira of Fukui and Aizu, held large han. A few fudai daimyō, such as the Ii of Hikone, held large han; the shogunate placed many fudai at strategic locations to guard the trade routes and the approaches to Edo. Many fudai daimyō took positions in the Edo shogunate, some rising to the position of rōjū; the fact that fudai daimyō could hold government positions while tozama in general, could not was a main difference between the two. Tozama daimyō held large fiefs far away from the capital, with e.g. the Kaga han of Ishikawa Prefecture, headed by the Maeda clan, assessed at 1,000,000 koku. Other famous tozama clans included the Mori of Chōshū, the Shimazu of Satsuma, the Date of Sendai, the Uesugi of Yonezawa, the Hachisuka of Awa; the Tokugawa regarded them as rebellious, but for most of the Edo period, marriages between the Tokugawa and the tozama, as well as control policies such as sankin-kōtai, resulted in peaceful relations.
Daimyō were required to maintain residences in Edo as well as their fiefs, to move periodically between Edo and their fiefs spending alternate years in each place, in a practice called sankin-kōtai. In 1869, the year after the Meiji Restoration, the daimyō, together with the kuge, formed a new aristocracy, the kazoku. In 1871, the han were abolished and prefectures were established, thus ending the daimyō era in Japan. In the wake of this change, many daimyō remained in control of their lands, being appointed as prefectural governors. Despite this, members of former daimyō families remained prominent in government and society, in some cases continue to re
Order of the Rising Sun
The Order of the Rising Sun is a Japanese order, established in 1875 by Emperor Meiji. The Order was the first national decoration awarded by the Japanese government, created on 10 April 1875 by decree of the Council of State; the badge features rays of sunlight from the rising sun. The design of the Rising Sun symbolizes energy as powerful as the rising sun in parallel with the "rising sun" concept of Japan; the order is awarded to those who have made distinguished achievements in international relations, promotion of Japanese culture, advancements in their field, development in welfare or preservation of the environment. Prior to the end of World War II, it was awarded for exemplary military service. Beginning in 2003, the two lowest rankings for the Order of the Rising Sun were abolished, with the highest degree becoming a separate order known as the Order of the Paulownia Flowers, with the single rank of Grand Cordon. While it is the third highest order bestowed by the Japanese government, it is however the highest ordinarily conferred order.
The highest Japanese order, the Order of the Chrysanthemum, is reserved for heads of state or royalty, while the second highest order, the Order of the Paulownia Flowers, is reserved for politicians. The modern version of this honour has been conferred on non-Japanese recipients beginning in 1981; the awarding of the Order is administered by the Decoration Bureau of the Cabinet Office headed by the Japanese Prime Minister. It can be awarded posthumously; the Order was awarded in nine classes until 2003, when the Grand Cordon with Paulownia Flowers was made a separate order, the lowest two classes were abolished. Since it has been awarded in six classes. Conventionally, a diploma is prepared to accompany the insignia of the order, in some rare instances, the personal signature of the Emperor will have been added; as an illustration of the wording of the text, a translation of a representative 1929 diploma says: By the grace of Heaven, Emperor of Japan, seated on the throne occupied by the same dynasty from time immemorial, We confer the Second Class of the Imperial Order of Meiji upon Henry Waters Taft, a citizen of the United States of America and a director of the Japan Society of New York, invest him with the insignia of the same class of the Order of the Double Rays of the Rising Sun, in expression of the good will which we entertain towards him.
In witness whereof, we have hereunto set our hand and caused the Grand Seal of State to be affixed at the Imperial Palace, this thirteenth day of the fifth month of the fourth year of Shōwa, corresponding to the 2,589th year from the accession to the throne of Emperor Jimmu." The star for the Grand Cordon and Second Class is a silver star of eight points, each point having three alternating silver rays. It is worn on the right chest for the 2nd Class; the badge for the Grand Cordon to Sixth Classes is an eight-pointed badge bearing a central red enamelled sun disc, with gilt points, with four gilt and four silver points, or with silver points. It is suspended from three enamelled paulownia leaves on a ribbon in white with red border stripes, worn as a sash from the right shoulder for the Grand Cordon, as a necklet for the 2nd and 3rd Classes and on the left chest for the 4th to 6th Classes; the badge for the Seventh and Eighth Classes consisted of a silver medal in the shape of three paulownia leaves, enamelled for the 7th Class and plain for the 8th Class.
Both were suspended on a ribbon, again in white with red border stripes, worn on the left chest. Both classes were abolished in 2003 and replaced by the Order of the Paulownia Flowers, a single-class order that now ranks above the Order of the Rising Sun. Henry Hajimu Fujii, 1971 Bolesław Orliński, 1926 Fudeko Reekie, 2013 John Wilson, 1895 In 2003, the 7th and 8th levels – named for leaves of the Paulownia tree, long used as a mon for the highest levels of Japanese society – were moved to a new and distinct order, the single-class Order of the Paulownia Flowers. Tetsuzō Iwamoto 1942 Leonard Kubiak 1926 In 2003, the 7th and 8th levels – named for leaves of the Paulownia tree, long used as a mon for the highest levels of Japanese society – were moved to a new and distinct order, the single-class Order of the Paulownia Flowers. Order of Civil Merit Order of Chula Chom Klao and Order of the White Elephant Order of St. Michael and St. George Legion of Honour Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany Order "For Merit to the Fatherland" Order of Isabella the Catholic Order of Merit of the Italian Republic Decoration of Honour for Services to the Republic of Austria Order of Prince Henry Peterson, James W. Barry C. Weaver and Michael A. Quigley.
Orders and Medals of Japan and Associated States. San Ramon, California: Orders and Medals Society of America. ISBN 1-890974-09-9. Japan, Cabinet Office: Decorations and Medals Decoration Bureau: Order of the Rising Sun Japan Mint: Production Process
Samurai were the military nobility and officer caste of medieval and early-modern Japan. In Japanese, they are referred to as bushi or buke. According to translator William Scott Wilson: "In Chinese, the character 侍 was a verb meaning'to wait upon','accompany persons' in the upper ranks of society, this is true of the original term in Japanese, saburau. In both countries the terms were nominalized to mean'those who serve in close attendance to the nobility', the Japanese term saburai being the nominal form of the verb." According to Wilson, an early reference to the word samurai appears in the Kokin Wakashū, the first imperial anthology of poems, completed in the first part of the 10th century. By the end of the 12th century, samurai became entirely synonymous with bushi, the word was associated with the middle and upper echelons of the warrior class; the samurai were associated with a clan and their lord, were trained as officers in military tactics and grand strategy. While the samurai numbered less than 10% of Japan's population, their teachings can still be found today in both everyday life and in modern Japanese martial arts.
Following the Battle of Hakusukinoe against Tang China and Silla in 663 AD which led to a retreat from Korean affairs, Japan underwent widespread reform. One of the most important was that of the Taika Reform, issued by Prince Naka-no-Ōe in 646 AD; this edict allowed the Japanese aristocracy to adopt the Tang dynasty political structure, culture and philosophy. As part of the Taihō Code of 702 AD, the Yōrō Code, the population was required to report for the census, a precursor for national conscription. With an understanding of how the population was distributed, Emperor Monmu introduced a law whereby 1 in 3–4 adult males were drafted into the national military; these soldiers were required to supply their own weapons, in return were exempted from duties and taxes. This was one of the first attempts by the Imperial government to form an organized army modeled after the Chinese system, it was called "Gundan-Sei" by historians and is believed to have been short-lived. The Taihō Code classified most of the Imperial bureaucrats into 12 ranks, each divided into two sub-ranks, 1st rank being the highest adviser to the Emperor.
Those of 6th rank and below were dealt with day-to-day affairs. Although these "samurai" were civilian public servants, the modern word is believed to have derived from this term. Military men, would not be referred to as "samurai" for many more centuries. In the early Heian period, during the late 8th and early 9th centuries, Emperor Kanmu sought to consolidate and expand his rule in northern Honshū, sent military campaigns against the Emishi, who resisted the governance of the Kyoto-based imperial court. Emperor Kanmu introduced the title of sei'i-taishōgun, or shōgun, began to rely on the powerful regional clans to conquer the Emishi. Skilled in mounted combat and archery, these clan warriors became the Emperor's preferred tool for putting down rebellions. Though this is the first known use of the title shōgun, it was a temporary title and was not imbued with political power until the 13th century. At this time, the Imperial Court officials considered them to be a military section under the control of the Imperial Court.
Emperor Kanmu disbanded his army. From this time, the emperor's power declined. While the emperor was still the ruler, powerful clans around Kyoto assumed positions as ministers, their relatives bought positions as magistrates. To amass wealth and repay their debts, magistrates imposed heavy taxes, resulting in many farmers becoming landless. Through protective agreements and political marriages, the aristocrats accumulated political power surpassing the traditional aristocracy; some clans were formed by farmers who had taken up arms to protect themselves from the Imperial magistrates sent to govern their lands and collect taxes. These clans formed alliances to protect themselves against more powerful clans, by the mid-Heian period, they had adopted characteristic Japanese armor and weapons; the Emperor and non-warrior nobility employed these warrior nobles. In time they amassed enough manpower and political backing, in the form of alliances with one another, to establish the first samurai-dominated government.
As the power of these regional clans grew, their chief was a distant relative of the Emperor and a lesser member of either the Fujiwara, Minamoto, or Taira clans. Though sent to provincial areas for fixed four-year terms as magistrates, the toryo declined to return to the capital when their terms ended, their sons inherited their positions and continued to lead the clans in putting down rebellions throughout Japan during the middle- and later-Heian period; because of their rising military and economic power, the warriors became a new force in the politics of the Imperial court. Their involvement in the Hōgen Rebellion in the late Heian period consolidated their power, which pitted the rivalry of Minamoto and Taira clans against each other in the Heiji Rebellion of 1160; the victor, Taira no Kiyomori, became an imperial advisor and was the first warrior to attain such a position. He seized control of the central government, establishing the first samurai-dominated government and relegating the Emperor to figurehead status.
However, the Taira clan was still conservative when compared to its eventual successor, the Minamoto, instead of expanding or stre
The Meiji Restoration known as the Meiji Renovation, Reform, or Renewal, was an event that restored practical imperial rule to the Empire of Japan in 1868 under Emperor Meiji. Although there were ruling emperors before the Meiji Restoration, the events restored practical abilities and consolidated the political system under the emperor of Japan; the goals of the restored government were expressed by the new emperor in the Charter Oath. The Restoration led to enormous changes in Japan's political and social structure and spanned both the late Edo period and the beginning of the Meiji period; the Japanese knew that they were behind the Western world when American Commodore Matthew C. Perry came to Japan in 1853 in large warships with armament and technology that far outclassed those of Japan with the intent to conclude a treaty that would open up Japanese ports to trade. Figures like Shimazu Nariakira concluded. Observing Japan's response to the Western powers, Chinese general Li Hongzhang considered Japan to be China's "principal security threat" as early as 1863, five years before the Meiji Restoration.
The leaders of the Meiji Restoration, as this revolution came to be known, acted in the name of restoring imperial rule to strengthen Japan against the threat represented by the colonial powers of the day, bringing to an end the era known as sakoku. The word "Meiji" means "enlightened rule" and the goal was to combine "modern advances" with traditional "eastern" values; the main leaders of this were Itō Hirobumi, Matsukata Masayoshi, Kido Takayoshi, Itagaki Taisuke, Yamagata Aritomo, Mori Arinori, Ōkubo Toshimichi, Yamaguchi Naoyoshi. The foundation of the Meiji Restoration was the 1866 Satsuma-Chōshū Alliance between Saigō Takamori and Kido Takayoshi, leaders of the reformist elements in the Satsuma Domain and Chōshū Domain; these two leaders supported the Emperor Kōmei and were brought together by Sakamoto Ryōma for the purpose of challenging the ruling Tokugawa shogunate and restoring the Emperor to power. After Kōmei's death on January 30, 1867, Meiji ascended the throne on February 3; this period saw Japan change from being a feudal society to having a market economy and left the Japanese with a lingering influence of Modernity.
The Tokugawa government had been founded in the 17th century and focused on reestablishing order in social and international affairs after a century of warfare. The political structure, established by Ieyasu and solidified under his two immediate successors, his son Hidetada and grandson Iemitsu, bound all daimyōs to the shogunate and limited any individual daimyō from acquiring too much land or power; the Tokugawa shogunate came to its official end on November 9, 1867, when Tokugawa Yoshinobu, the 15th Tokugawa shōgun, "put his prerogatives at the Emperor's disposal" and resigned 10 days later. This was the "restoration" of imperial rule – although Yoshinobu still had significant influence and it was not until January 3, the following year, with the young Emperor's edict, that the restoration occurred. Shortly thereafter in January 1868, the Boshin War started with the Battle of Toba–Fushimi in which Chōshū and Satsuma's forces defeated the ex-shōgun's army; this forced the Emperor to strip Yoshinobu of all power.
On January 3, 1868, the Emperor made a formal declaration of the restoration of his power: The Emperor of Japan announces to the sovereigns of all foreign countries and to their subjects that permission has been granted to the Shōgun Tokugawa Yoshinobu to return the governing power in accordance with his own request. We shall henceforward exercise supreme authority in all the internal and external affairs of the country; the title of Emperor must be substituted for that of Taikun, in which the treaties have been made. Officers are being appointed by us to the conduct of foreign affairs, it is desirable. All Tokugawa lands were seized and placed under "imperial control", thus placing them under the prerogative of the new Meiji government. With Fuhanken sanchisei, the areas were split into three types: urban prefectures, rural prefectures and the existing domains. In 1869, the daimyōs of the Tosa, Satsuma and Chōshū Domains, who were pushing most fiercely against the shogunate, were persuaded to "return their domains to the Emperor".
Other daimyō were subsequently persuaded to do so, thus creating, arguably for the first time, a central government in Japan which exercised direct power through the entire "realm". Some shogunate forces escaped to Hokkaidō, where they attempted to set up a breakaway Republic of Ezo; the defeat of the armies of the former shōgun marked the final end of the Tokugawa shogunate, with the Emperor's power restored. By 1872, the daimyōs, past and present, were summoned before the Emperor, where it was declared that all domains were now to be returned to the Emperor; the 280 domains were turned into 72 prefectures, each under the control of a state-appointed governor. If the daimyōs peacefully complied, they were given a prominent voice in the new Meiji