This is the online Japanese dictionary developed by Free Light Software. You can find easily an equivalent Japanese word from English, or send queries to Japanese search engines without knowing Japanese translation, by clicking on a Japanese word. Click on a globe icon to find the position of a locality on Japanese map. The dictionary of Japanese general terms is available at Online Japanese dictionary.
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alternative words: Dutch study, Dutch studies
keywords: philosophy
related topics: Edo period , Edo shogunate , Sakoku , Sugita Genpaku
explanation: During Edo period under Sakoku regime, only the contact with Dutch among Europeans was authorized, because they were not interested in missionary activities. Since the 18th century, Edo shogunate had relaxed the rule on import of Dutch books and many Japanese began to learn Dutch language to absorb great scientific and technique discoveries made in Europe. This predominance of Dutch language continued until the mid 19th century when English and French succeeded it.

Rebellion of Fujiwara no Hirotsugu

alternative words: Revolt of Fujiwara no Hirotsugu, Fujiwara no Hirotsugu no ran
keywords: war
related topics: Nara period , Fujiwara family , Dazaifu , Emperor Shomu
related web sites:
explanation: The biggest revolt of Nara period, provoked in 740 by Fujiwara no Hirotsugu, the head of Shikike, a sub branch of Fujiwara family. Unhappy with the degradation of his post from the governor of Yamato province near capital to the vice governor of Dazaifu (Shoni), he revolted by gathering troops of 10,000 men in Kyushu region, while Yamato court sent 17,000 men directed by Ono no Azumahito. Hirotsugu was defeated due to many defections. He was captured while trying to flee to Korea and executed.


蓮如 蓮如上人
alternative words: Saint Rennyo, St Rennyo
keywords: buddhism, famous person, priest
related topics: Muromachi period , Kamakura period , Jodo shin sect , Buddhism
related web sites: , ,
explanation: Priest of Muromachi period. When he was born in 1415, Jodoshinshu sect, founded by his ancestor, Shinran during Kamakura period, being declined, he strove to restore its ancient power in Shiga prefecture. Unhappy with his activity, Enryakuji temple chased him to Fukui prefecture at Yoshizaki. There, his sect became very popular because he taught the doctrine by using "Gobunsho" written in plain words. He restored then Honganji at Yamashina in Kyoto. He died in 1499.


alternative words: Nikolai Petrovich Rezanov
keywords: famous person, foreigner, military man, northern territory
related topics: Ezochi , Laxman , Sakoku
related web sites: ,
explanation: Russian nobility and a director of Russian American company, born in 1764. As special envoy of Tsar Alexander I, he came to Japan to settle a trading relationship in 1804. After several months of waiting and negotiation in Nagasaki, Japanese refused finally to grant a trading relationship. Frustrated, he ordered secretly his retainer, Chvostoff to attack Japanese trading posts on Etorofu and Sakhalin islands in 1806. He died in Siberia during a return trip to St Petersburg due to a fever in 1807.

Rinzai sect

alternative words: Rinzaishu sect, Rinzaishu, Rinzai-shu, Rinzai shu
keywords: buddhism, china, sect
related topics: Myoan Yosai , Buddhism , Zen , Tendai sect , Shingon sect , Kamakura period , Muromachi period
related web sites: ,
explanation: One of the 5 major Zen sects in China. It was implemented in Japan by Yosai in 1191 when he built the first Zen temple, Seifukuji, in Fukuoka. Contrary to Soto sect of Dogen, it has remained reconciling with other sects such as Tendai and Shingon. It give the importance to "Koan" (questionnaires to mediate) and fast enlightening. The monastery's network of Gozan (5 main monasteries) held up by shoguns had been prosperous during Kamakura and Muromachi periods.

Ritsuryo system

alternative words: Ritsuryo regime, Ritsuryosei, Ritsuryo sei, Ritsuryousei, Ritsuryou sei, Ritsuryo, Ritsu ryo
keywords: law
related topics: Taika reform , Emperor Tenchi , Nara period , Heian period , Shoen , Kuni , Kokushi
related web sites: ,
explanation: Centralized political system appeared in Japan between 7th to 10th century on the model of Chinese Sui and Tang dynasties. Initiated by Taika reform of Emperor Tenchi in 645, it reached the apex during Nara period. It consists of a vigorous control of the population and tax collection through a huge number of bureaucrats, ledgers and written laws. Incompatible with Japanese mentality, it had been gradually voided with the appearance of shoen and samurai clans during Heian period.


alternative words: Roujuu, Senior councilor
keywords: office, title
related topics: Edo shogunate , Bugyo , Tanuma Okitsugu , Karo , Mizuno Tadakuni , Kyoto shoshidai
explanation: Top ranking officials in Edo shogunate, they were appointed from fudai daimyo who were the old allies of Tokugawa regime. The regular number is 5 or 6 and they form an inner circle around shogun to make collectively the important decisions. Each roju controlling some bugyo, they should hold an equivalent function of the vice prime minister in a modern nation. Exceptionally tairo, a kind of super roju, was appointed and allowed to make decisions without consulting other roju.

Rokuhara tandai

alternative words: Rokuhara deputy, Rokuharatandai
keywords: office, title
related topics: Kamakura shogunate , Emperor Gotoba , Shugo , Heiankyo , Yamato dynasty , Heishi , Hojoshi
related web sites: ,
explanation: Post settled by Kamakura shogunate to watch the imperial court and charged with the police affairs of Kyoto. Initially these matters had been handled by Kyoto shugo but after Jyokyu rebellion of emperor Gotoba, Rokuhara tandai replaced it with a prerogative of judicial affairs on western Japan. The post was occupied by 2 Hojo members and disappeared with the fall of Kamakura shogunate in 1333. Rokuhara was a southeastern district of Kyoto where Heishi had settled their headquarters.


alternative words: Masterless samurai
keywords: title
related topics: Sengoku period , Edo period , Battle of Sekigahara , Samurai , Honda Toshiaki , Hayashi Shihei , Kaieki
related web sites:
explanation: Literally "floating man". Initially it designating the errant people, this term became a title of "masterless samurai" during Edo period. During Sengoku period, due to a great number of battles, ronin could find easily another master, but when a peace arrived after battle of Sekigahara, this situation became quickly uncomfortable, and most of ronin remained poor and had to find a new job such as merchant or teacher. Honda Toshiaki and Hayashi Shihei were ronin.

Russo-Japanese war

alternative words: Russo Japanese war, Russia Japan war, Nichiro senso, Nichirosenso, Nichiro sensou, Nichirosensou, Nichiro war
keywords: russia, war
related topics: Meiji period , Admiral Togo , Battle of Tsushima , General Nogi , Portsmouth treaty , Yamagata Aritomo , Oyama Iwao , Kodama Gentaro
related web sites: , , ,
explanation: War between Russia and Japan provoked by a dispute on Korea and Manchuria interests. It began in February 1904 by a Japanese surprise attack on Port Arthur. Though numerically superior, before highly motivated Japanese troops, Russia lost Port Arthur in January 1905 and the naval battle of Tsushima in May 1905. The war ended by the signature in September 1905 of Portsmouth treaty: Russia returned back south Sakhalin and ceded south Manchuria interests to Japan.

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Last update: 27/07/20 17:27