History UsefulNotes / TheFortySevenPrefectures

22nd Jun '16 10:47:56 AM megarockman
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The castle town was founded in 1589 by Mori Terumoto, one of the main opponents of Toyotomi Hideyoshi during the latter's drive to unite the provinces of Japan during the Sengoku Jidai. It grew in prominence after the Meiji Restoration when it became a big industrial and transportation center (as the westernmost large city on Honshu with a good harbor). Nowadays it's known for its version of okonomiyaki (the ingredients are usually layered; the more broadly-known Kansai version mixes the ingredients together while cooking) and its high number of street cars.

And, yes, it was the target of the first atomic bomb dropped by the United States on August 6, 1945.
30th Oct '15 5:49:32 PM majintayag
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Has a reputation as Japan's hardest drinking prefecture. Known as Tosa Province back in the day. Birthplace of mercurial samurai/politician/negotiator/revolutionary/reformer Ryoma Sakamoto.

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Has a reputation as Japan's hardest drinking prefecture. Known as Tosa Province back in the day. Birthplace of mercurial samurai/politician/negotiator/revolutionary/reformer Ryoma Sakamoto.
30th Oct '15 5:43:12 PM majintayag
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The smallest of Japan's four main islands. It's ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin, as the name translates as "Four Provinces". The four prefectures that currently make up the island are pretty much direct descendants of a province from Japan's feudal days.

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The smallest of Japan's four main islands. It's ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin, as the name translates as "Four Provinces". The four prefectures that currently make up the island are pretty much direct descendants of a province from Japan's feudal days.
days. Home to the 88 Temple Pilgrimage and a bunch of rice fields.


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Formerly known as Awa Province. Most famous for the annual Awa Odori dance festival in August.


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Birthplace of Kobo Daishi, polymath and founder of Esoteric Buddhism. Also known for Sanuki Udon noodles, named after the old title of the province.


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The liveliest of the four prefectures, which still isn't saying much. Formerly known as Iyo Province. Home to Dogo Onsen, one of Japan's oldest hot springs and now a fun tourist trap.


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Has a reputation as Japan's hardest drinking prefecture. Known as Tosa Province back in the day. Birthplace of mercurial samurai/politician/negotiator/revolutionary/reformer Ryoma Sakamoto.
26th Oct '15 10:21:00 AM megarockman
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Hakodate was the LastStand of the Tokugawa Shogunate in the Boshin War following the Meiji Restoration in 1868 - a bunch of shogunate loyalists took over the fort there and held out until they were crushed the following May. The Meiji government took up the task of developing Hokkaido and brought in help from American advisors - the effects can be seen today in much of Hokkaido's historical architecture, which look more like something you'd see in the American Midwest, and the Western grid-pattern street layout of Sapporo. The only other Japanese cities to have such a layout are Kyoto and Nara; pretty much every other city in Japan has streets that cross and meet each other at irregular angles, mainly to confuse rival daimyo who might try to take over their turf.

Today, it's probably most well-known for its tourism opportunities, whether it's being able to escape the monsoon rains that drench the rest of Japan in the humid months of June and July, or the skiing opportunites in the winter (Sapporo hosted the 1972 Winter Olympics), or the many hot springs and natural landmarks all over the island. It's also known for its diverse array of agricultural products - Hokkaido has about a quarter of all the arable land in Japan.

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Hakodate was the LastStand of the Tokugawa Shogunate in the Boshin War following the Meiji Restoration in 1868 - a bunch of shogunate loyalists took over the fort there and held out until they were crushed the following May. The Meiji government took up the task of developing Hokkaido and brought in help from American advisors advisers - the effects can be seen today in much of Hokkaido's historical architecture, which look more like something you'd see in the American Midwest, and the Western grid-pattern street layout of Sapporo. The only other Japanese cities to have such a layout are Kyoto and Nara; Nara (they got that pattern because of Chinese feng shui); pretty much every other city in Japan has streets that cross and meet each other at irregular angles, mainly to confuse rival daimyo who might try to take over their turf.

Today, it's probably most well-known for its tourism opportunities, whether it's being able to escape the monsoon rains that drench the rest of Japan in the humid months of June and July, or the skiing opportunites opportunities in the winter (Sapporo hosted the 1972 Winter Olympics), or the many hot springs and natural landmarks all over the island. It's also known for its diverse array of agricultural products - Hokkaido has about a quarter of all the arable land in Japan.



In the northeastern part of Honshū, north of the Kanto Plain lies the Tohoku Region; "Tōhoku" literally translates as [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin "east-north"]]. Historically this is a less-developed region, as it was settled by Japanese centuries after the center of its civilization developed to the south. The mountainous geography of the area, the rather harsh winters, and the relative lack of easy transport access (by road or by sea - the rivers generally aren't suitable for boats and there aren't many harbors) further slowed settlement. Despite the relatively short growing season, the region is now known as an agricultural center, as a disproportionate amount of the nation's rice is grown here as similar populated areas in the south went for industrialization first. This combination of factors is likely why someone with a TohokuRegionalAccent gets stereotyped as a backwoods hillbilly.

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In the northeastern part of Honshū, north of the Kanto Plain lies the Tohoku Region; "Tōhoku" literally translates as [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin "east-north"]]. Historically this is a less-developed region, as it was settled by Japanese centuries after the center of its civilization developed to the south. The mountainous geography of the area, the rather harsh winters, and the relative lack of easy transport access (by road or by sea - the rivers generally aren't suitable for boats and there aren't many decent harbors) further slowed settlement. Despite the relatively short growing season, the region is now known as an agricultural center, as a disproportionate amount of the nation's rice is grown here as since similar populated areas in the south went for industrialization first. This combination of factors is likely why someone with a TohokuRegionalAccent gets stereotyped as a backwoods hillbilly.



These four prefectures lie on the coast of the Sea of Japan. During the winter air from Siberia picks up moisture travelling across the Sea of Japan before it is forced upward by the Japanese Alps and causing it to dump its precipitation, making this area among the snowiest places on Earth.

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These four prefectures lie on the coast of the Sea of Japan. During the winter air from Siberia picks up moisture travelling traveling across the Sea of Japan before it is forced upward by the Japanese Alps and causing it to dump its precipitation, making this area among the snowiest places on Earth.



Its most famous historical figure is most likely UsefulNotes/UesugiKenshin, whose base of power was here.



Location of the Ise Grand Shrine, one of (if not the most) sacred shrines in Shinto.



Though the name "Chūgoku" literally means mid-country (and also happens to be the Japanese word for China), the region occupies the western part of Honshu as an ArtifactTitle from when the center of Japanese civilization was between Kyushu and the Kansai Plain, which would put this region in the middle. The region can be split in half down its mountainous middle, with the San'in (山陰) region bordering the Sea of Japan and the San'yō (山陽) region bordering the Inland Sea. (Portions of Hyōgo and Kyōto prefectures were historically also part of the San'in and San'yō regions.)

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Though the name "Chūgoku" literally means mid-country (and also happens to be the Japanese word for China), mid-country, the region occupies the western part of Honshu as an ArtifactTitle from when the center of Japanese civilization was between Kyushu and the Kansai Plain, which would put this region in the middle. The region can be split in half down its mountainous middle, with the San'in (山陰) region bordering the Sea of Japan and the San'yō (山陽) region bordering the Inland Sea. (Portions of Hyōgo and Kyōto prefectures were historically also part of the San'in and San'yō regions.)
) Since "Chūgoku" is also used to refer to UsefulNotes/{{China}} since UsefulNotes/NoMoreEmperors, tourist agencies often use the term "San’in‐San’yō region" to distinguish between them.



The smallest of Japan's four main islands. It's ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin, as the name translates as "Four Provinces". The four prefectures that currently make up the island are pretty much direct descendents of a province from Japan's feudal days.

to:

The smallest of Japan's four main islands. It's ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin, as the name translates as "Four Provinces". The four prefectures that currently make up the island are pretty much direct descendents descendants of a province from Japan's feudal days.



The historical center of ''nanban'' (European, literally "southern barbarian" since European ships would arrive from that direction) trade with Japan, dating back to the 16th Century first with the Portuguese and then later with the Dutch. During Tokugawa rule the closing off of the country to outside influence effectively sealed off official contact with the West everywhere except for highly-regulated contact at Dejima, an artificial island in Nagasaki's bay (which was originally a small peninsula - the island was made by digging out a canal that cut across it).

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The historical center of ''nanban'' (European, literally (European)[[note]]literally "southern barbarian" since European ships would arrive from that direction) direction[[/note]] trade with Japan, dating back to the 16th Century first with the Portuguese and then later with the Dutch. During Tokugawa rule the closing off of the country to outside influence effectively sealed off official contact with the West everywhere except for highly-regulated contact at Dejima, an artificial island in Nagasaki's bay (which was originally a small peninsula - the island was made by digging out a canal that cut across it).
6th Jul '15 11:25:15 AM megarockman
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Though the name "Chūgoku" literally means mid-country (and also happens to be the Japanese word for China), the region occupies the western part of Honshu. The region can be split in half down its mountainous middle, with the San'in (山陰) region bordering the Sea of Japan and the San'yō (山陽) region bordering the Inland Sea. (Portions of Hyōgo and Kyōto prefectures were historically also part of the San'in and San'yō regions.)

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Though the name "Chūgoku" literally means mid-country (and also happens to be the Japanese word for China), the region occupies the western part of Honshu.Honshu as an ArtifactTitle from when the center of Japanese civilization was between Kyushu and the Kansai Plain, which would put this region in the middle. The region can be split in half down its mountainous middle, with the San'in (山陰) region bordering the Sea of Japan and the San'yō (山陽) region bordering the Inland Sea. (Portions of Hyōgo and Kyōto prefectures were historically also part of the San'in and San'yō regions.)



Okinawa, the largest island in the chain, played a vital point during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, as it was the location for the last major battle in the Pacific front; some historians believe that this was a deciding factor for the decision to use atomic bombs. After the war, the islands remained under US occupation until 1972. Now, the islands are popular tourist destination spots and is akin to Hawaii. Okinawa also is home to numerous US military bases, which is still a sore point to this day to the locals.

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Okinawa, the largest island in the chain, played a vital point during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, as it was the location for the last major battle in the Pacific front; some historians believe that this the long and bloody campaign was a deciding factor for the decision to use atomic bombs. After the war, the islands remained under US occupation until 1972. Now, the islands are popular tourist destination spots and is akin to Hawaii. Okinawa also is home to numerous US military bases, which is still a sore point to this day to for the locals.
10th Jun '15 12:37:56 PM megarockman
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The historical center of ''nanban'' (European, literally "southern barbarian" since European ships would arrive from that direction) trade with Japan, dating back to the 16th Century first with the Portuguese and then later with the Dutch. During Tokugawa rule the closing off of the country to outside influence effectively sealed off official contact with the West everywhere except for highly-regulated contact at Dejima, an artificial island in Nagasaki's bay (which was originally a small peninsula - the island was made by digging out a canal that cut across it).
10th Jun '15 12:11:56 PM megarockman
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During the age of the Shogun, this whole region of six current prefectures was made up of just two provinces (Dewa and Mutsu) because of its relative lack of development, and the comparitive remoteness from the rest of Japanese civilization meant the local clans (most notably the [[UsefulNotes/DateMasamune Date]] family) always maintained some distance and autonomy from the center of power in Kyoto or Edo.

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During the age of the Shogun, this whole region of six current prefectures was made up of just two provinces (Dewa and Mutsu) because of its relative lack of development, and the comparitive remoteness from the rest of Japanese civilization meant the local clans (most notably the [[UsefulNotes/DateMasamune Date]] family) family, who in exchange for keeping the Ainu at bay in Hokkaido were exempt from both rice tribute and the ''sankin kotai'' policy[[note]]where daimyo were required to live in Edo for six months out of the year to prevent them from plotting against Tokugawa rule[[/note]] under the Tokugawa shogunate) always maintained some distance and autonomy from the center of power in Kyoto or Edo.
14th May '15 9:46:04 AM Willbyr
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* Hokkaido is a -"dō" (道), which translates as "circuit". It is a remainder from the Asuka ([[NeonGenesisEvangelion no, not that one]]) Period (538-710 AD), when Japan was divided into Gokishichidō: five provinces centered around the Imperial capital Nara and later Kyoto (Kinai), and seven circuits based on the roads that connected them to those five central provinces. (Hokkaido was not one of those original seven circuits - it's basically a -''dō'' because the Meiji Government didn't know what else to call it as it wasn't developed enough to be a -''ken''.)

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* Hokkaido is a -"dō" (道), which translates as "circuit". It is a remainder from the Asuka ([[NeonGenesisEvangelion ([[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion no, not that one]]) Period (538-710 AD), when Japan was divided into Gokishichidō: five provinces centered around the Imperial capital Nara and later Kyoto (Kinai), and seven circuits based on the roads that connected them to those five central provinces. (Hokkaido was not one of those original seven circuits - it's basically a -''dō'' because the Meiji Government didn't know what else to call it as it wasn't developed enough to be a -''ken''.)
1st Feb '15 10:24:41 PM Prfnoff
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The town of Uji, where the old road between Kyoto and Nara crosses the river of the same name, was significant during the Heian period as a summer retreat and burial ground for the Fujiwara clan. The last part of ''Literature/TheTaleOfGenji'' are set here. Uji was the site of two major battles during the UsefulNotes/GenpeiWar. Today, Uji is known for old temples, green tea and Creator/KyotoAnimation.
1st Feb '15 7:04:25 PM Prfnoff
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Hakodate was the LastStand of the Tokugawa Shogunate following the Meiji Restoration in 1868 - a bunch of shogunate loyalists took over the fort there and held out until they were crushed the following May. The Meiji government took up the task of developing Hokkaido and brought in help from American advisors - the effects can be seen today in much of Hokkaido's historical architecture, which look more like something you'd see in the American Midwest, and the Western grid-pattern street layout of Sapporo (the only other Japanese cities to have such a layout are Kyoto and Nara).

to:

Hakodate was the LastStand of the Tokugawa Shogunate in the Boshin War following the Meiji Restoration in 1868 - a bunch of shogunate loyalists took over the fort there and held out until they were crushed the following May. The Meiji government took up the task of developing Hokkaido and brought in help from American advisors - the effects can be seen today in much of Hokkaido's historical architecture, which look more like something you'd see in the American Midwest, and the Western grid-pattern street layout of Sapporo (the Sapporo. The only other Japanese cities to have such a layout are Kyoto and Nara).
Nara; pretty much every other city in Japan has streets that cross and meet each other at irregular angles, mainly to confuse rival daimyo who might try to take over their turf.



-> Capital: Kyōto

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-> Capital: KyōtoUsefulNotes/{{Kyoto}}



The historical heart of Japan, partly thanks to being the Imperial seat from 794 until the Emperor Meiji moved it to Tokyo in 1868. The Emperor may not have had much meaningful political power for most of Japan's history, but its contribution to traditional Japanese culture today is immensive - ''Literature/TheTaleOfGenji'' (sometimes considered the world's first modern novel), noh and kabuki theater, around 2000 temples, highly-regarded kimonos, sake production, etc. The city largely escaped aerial bombing by YanksWithTanks during WorldWarTwo; it was on the list of potential atomic bomb targets but Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson got the city removed from the list because he had fond memories from his honeymoon there (it was replaced by Nagasaki).

The combination of all these factors meant that Kyoto emerged post-war with probably the highest concentration of traditional Japanese architechture such as ''machiya'' in the country. However, with all the historic and cultural prizes the city has don't think that the city is stuck in the past - modernization is quickly replacing old buildings with newer archtecture (case in point: the new Kyoto Station) and information technology is a major part of the economy. Oh, and {{Creator/Nintendo}} is based here, too.

Fun urban-planning fact - until Sapporo developed Kyoto and Nara were the only Japanese cities with a grid pattern for its streets. While Sapporo's grid was a result of its development being advised by Americans, Kyoto's was the result of Chinese feng-shui philosophy which also oriented the streets so that the old Imperial Palace faced south. Pretty much every other city in Japan has streets that cross and meet each other at irregular angles, mainly to confuse rival daimyo who might try to take over their turf.

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The Kyōto Basin, also known as the Yamashiro Basin after its previous provincial name, constitutes the historical heart of Japan, partly thanks to being Japan. The basin is defined by the Imperial seat Katsura, Kamo, Uji and Kizu Rivers, which descend into the plain from 794 until the Emperor Meiji moved it to Tokyo in 1868. The Emperor may not have had much meaningful political power for most of Japan's history, but its contribution to traditional Japanese culture today is immensive - ''Literature/TheTaleOfGenji'' (sometimes considered the world's first modern novel), noh and kabuki theater, around 2000 temples, highly-regarded kimonos, sake production, etc. The city largely escaped aerial bombing by YanksWithTanks during WorldWarTwo; it was on the list of potential atomic bomb targets but Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson got the city removed from the list because he had fond memories from his honeymoon there (it was replaced by Nagasaki).

The combination of all these factors meant that Kyoto emerged post-war with probably the highest concentration of traditional Japanese architechture such as ''machiya''
their sources in the country. However, with all the historic and cultural prizes the city has don't think that the city is stuck surrounding mountain (or, in the past - modernization is quickly replacing old buildings with newer archtecture (case in point: case of the new Kyoto Station) Uji, the Seta outlet of Lake Biwa) and information technology is a major merge together to form the Yodo River that flows into the sea at Osaka.

Two rural provinces, Tanba and Tango, also became
part of Kyōto Prefecture, adding little more than vast expanses of rural territory and access to the economy. Oh, and {{Creator/Nintendo}} is based here, too.

Fun urban-planning fact - until Sapporo developed Kyoto and Nara were the only Japanese cities with a grid pattern for its streets. While Sapporo's grid was a result
Sea of its development being advised by Americans, Kyoto's was the result of Chinese feng-shui philosophy which also oriented the streets so that the old Imperial Palace faced south. Pretty much every other city in Japan has streets that cross and meet each other at irregular angles, mainly to confuse rival daimyo who might try to take over their turf.
Japan.
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