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Kansei (寛政 ?) was a Japanese era name (年号, nengō, ?, lit. "year name") after Tenmei and before Kyōwa. This period spanned the years from 1789 through 1801. The reigning emperor was Kōkaku-tennō (光格天皇 ?).

Contents

Change of era

  • 1789 Kansei gannen (寛政元年 ?): The new era name of Kansei (meaning "Tolerant Government" or "Broad-minded Government") was created to mark a number of calamities including a devastating fire at the Imperial Palace. The previous era ended and a new one commenced in Tenmei 9, on the 25th day of the 1st month.

Events of the Kansei era

The broad panoply of changes and new initiatives of the Tokugawa shogunate during this era became known as the Kansei Reforms.

Matsudaira Sadanobu (1759-1829) was named the shogun's chief councilor (rōjū) in the summer of 1787; and early in the next year, he became the regent for the 11th shogun, Tokugawa Ienari.[1] As the chief administrative decision-maker in the bakufu hierarchy, he was in a position to effect radical change; and his initial actions represented an aggressive break with the recent past. Sadanobu's efforts were focused on strengthening the government by reversing many of the policies and practices which had become commonplace under the regime of the previous shogun, Tokugawa Ieharu. These reform policies could be interpreted as a reactionary response to the excesses of his rōjū predecessor, Tanuma Okitsugu (1719-1788);[2] and the result was that the Tanuma-initiated, liberalizing reforms within the bakufu and the relaxation of sakoku (Japan's "closed-door" policy of strict control of foreign merchants) were reversed or blocked.[3]

  • 1790 (Kansei 2): The shogunate issues an edict addressed to Hayashi Kinpō, the rector of the Edo Confucian Academy -- "The Kansei Prohibition of Heterodox Studies" (kansei igaku no kin).[4]
  • 1798 (Kansei 10): Kansei Calendar Revision

Notes

  1. ^ Totman, Conrad. Politics in the Tokugawa Bakufu. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988, p. 224
  2. ^ Hall, J. (1955). Tanuma Okitsugu: Forerunner of Modern Japan, 1719-1788. pp. 131-142.
  3. ^ Screech, T. (2006). Secret Memoirs of the Shoguns: Isaac Titsingh and Japan, 1779-1822, pp. 148-151, 163-170, 248.
  4. ^ Nosco, Peter. (1997). Confucianism and Tokugawa Culture, p. 20.

References

External links

Kansei 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th 13th
Gregorian 1789 1790 1791 1792 1793 1794 1795 1796 1797 1798 1799 1800 1801

Preceded by:
Tenmei

Era or nengō:
Kansei

Succeeded by:
Kyōwa

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