CHAPTER XII. TOKUGAWA SHOGUNATE, CULTURE AND SOCIETY

IN the previous chapter I have dwelt on the military and political organisation of the time of the Tokugawa Shogunate somewhat more fully than was appropriate for a book of such small compass as this. What was then the civilisation, which had been supported and sheltered by this organisation and régime? That must be told subsequently.

As the well-planned military régime of the Shogunate can be said to have been based on the assumption that war was a far-distant possibility, an imaginary danger, and as at the same time the Shogunate had watched jealously not to stir up daimyo and samurai to so warlike a pitch of self-confidence that they would believe themselves able to cope with the Shogun, there had lain the chief difficulty of sustaining the martial spirit of the nation in full strength, that is to say, of continuing the military régime as it had been at first. There were of course several gradations, in the intensity of the fighting spirit of the people in different localities of the country. In both extremities of the Empire, in the south of Kyushu and in the north of Honto, where civilisation was rather at a low ebb, the martial spirit had continued not much abated since the time of the Ashikaga. On both sides of the boundary of two such adjoining territories, a difference of dialect was clearly perceivable, and an acute hostile feeling against each other prevailed. People were not allowed to marry their neighbors beyond the frontier, and this rule was strictly applied to all members of the warrior-class. In brief, they were always staring each other in the face, as if ready to fight at any time. As to the greater part of the Empire, however, including the territories situated between the two extremities, that is to say, in those regions of the country where the people were more enlightened, no such animosity between the peoples of neighboring daimyo was to be noticed. There marriages had been contracted freely between the subjects of different lords, a relationship which could only arise from the assumption that most probably there would occur no war between the two daimyo, and there would be no fear of such marriages becoming an awkward connection. Adjoining territories maintaining such intimate relations, being connected by the personalities of the inhabitants, should be considered not as quasi-independent states ranged side by side and in dangerous rivalry, verging almost on belligerency, but as neighboring governmental departments in the same well-centralised state. It may be gathered from these data that the more enlightened and by far the greater part of the Japanese nation were so peace-loving, that they organised all their ways of living on the assumption of a permanent peace. And that absolute peace had verily continued for more than two centuries in a country said to have been dominated by an absolute military régime, more than testifies how averse is the Japanese nation from wanton warfare. Foreigners should ponder this irrefutable fact in the history of Japan, a fact which can not elsewhere be found in abundance even in the history of European and American states, before they calumniate our nation as the most bellicose and dangerous in the world.

Without doubt Japan under the Tokugawa Shogunate was a country governed by a military régime, feudalistic in form, but in truth peace brooded over the land, the utmost peace which could be expected from any military régime. As tranquillity had continued so long, our civilisation had been able meanwhile to make a wonderful progress. If war can be eulogised with some justice to be a stimulating and compulsive factor of civilisation, with no less certainty peace may be complimented as a factor, the most efficient, in fostering the same. In the preceding chapters I have spoken of the propagation of culture throughout the country, notwithstanding its anarchical condition, and of that very culture, which was in the main humanistic. This humanistic culture had now its successor in a civilisation higher in form and in quality. That the progress was apparently retarded for a while on account of wars, which rapidly succeeded one after another at the end of the Ashikaga, was a phenomenon that was only temporary. How could a few patches of straw floating on the surface stop the forward movement of a strong undercurrent, however slowly the stream might run? Mingled with the clash and clang of arms, an exquisite music embodying the ever advancing civilisation of our country had been heard; though at first very faintly audible, it grew louder and louder till it became sonorous enough to make the whole nation vibrate when the clamorous battle-cry of the warriors had subsided. In short, Japan had been steadily advancing, and it was indeed those warriors themselves who carried the torch of civilisation farther and farther onward. Many historians ascribed it solely to the individual exertion of Iyeyasu, that learning had been revived since the beginning of the seventeenth century. Seeing, however, that those samurai who fought with and under him had rarely been noted for the excellence of their literary acquirements, it can hardly be supposed that he had been deeply interested in promoting learning and culture among his entourage. Neither did he himself leave any trace of his having received a higher degree of liberal education than the average generals of his times. It is too notorious a fact to doubt that he earnestly encouraged learning and ordered many books to be reprinted. Yet it is also clear that his encouragement was very efficient, mainly because his position as the sole military and political master of Japan enabled him to figure as a patron of the arts. The fact that before his authority as a military dictator became incontestably established, the reprint of various books had been going on almost without intermission, and that the two Emperors Go-Yôzei and Go-Midzunowo and also Kanetsugu Naoye, a warrior who had grown up in the remote province of Yechigo, were among the most ardent patrons of learning by the encouragement they gave to the reprinting of standard works, testifies that Iyeyasu did not stand alone in encouraging liberal education. After all, it should be fairly said that the first Shogun of the Tokugawa did only what ought to have been done by him, or what the nation had a right to expect from a person in a position such as his. In 1593, that is to say, five years before the death of Hideyoshi, the Emperor Go-Yôzei ordered the socalled old text of the Hsiao-king to be reprinted in wooden type. This was the first book in our country printed with movable type, so far as can be said with certainty. As to the types themselves which the Emperor resorted to in his scholastic undertaking, we have reason to suppose that they had been seized in Korea as a prize of war and brought to this country by the expeditionary troops which Hideyoshi had sent thither in the previous year. Korea had been looked upon through the Ashikaga period by the Japanese as a country more advanced in culture than Japan in those days. We read in our history about the repeated applications addressed by the Ashikaga Shogunate to the Korean government, not only for the donation of a complete set of the Buddhist Tripitaka reprinted in that country, but also the blocks themselves used in that reprinting. To the latter of these two requests, the peninsular government flatly declined to accede. To the former, however, they acquiesced as many times as they could manage, so that we see now here and there volumes of the sutras which had been sent as presents by the Korean government before the seventeenth century. The method of printing with movable types had been introduced into Korea of course from China, and types made of wood as well as of clay had long been in use there. It seems to have been those wooden types which our warriors fetched home, and the fact that such vehicles of learning had been taken as a war- prize by these soldiers indicates that they were not totally indifferent to the cultivation of letters.

In 1597, four years after the reprinting of the afore-said Hsiao-king, the same Emperor ordered again many other books to be reprinted. Among those then thus reproduced were not only several books of Confucian classical literature and other Chinese works, literary as well as medical, but some Japanese books, such as the first volume of the Nihongi and a work on Japanese political institutions written by Chikafusa Kitabatake, a court-noble in the time of the Emperor Go-Daigo, who was noted for his unwavering fidelity to the Emperor and for his education, being the author of the celebrated history called Jingô-shôtôki. Many of these books seem to have been re-issued within the same year, which was one year previous to the death of Hideyoshi, and the types used this time were made in our country after the Korean models. Most probably the types captured in Korea as prizes did not long suffice to satiate the increasing desire of the Emperor, aroused by his deep interest in books.

The next step in the improvement of Japanese printing followed the same course as it had in Europe, that is to say, the use of metallic types. The first attempt in this improved method was made by the aforesaid Kanetsugu Naoye, head of the vassals of the house of Uyesugi, who was at that time lord of Yonezawa. The book which Naoye ordered to be reprinted was the celebrated Chinese literary glossary called the Wen-hsüan, which literally means selected literary pieces, in verse as well as in prose. This reprint was put into execution at Fushimi in the year 1606, which was the fourth year of the Shogunate of Iyeyasu, and the metallic material then used in casting the types was copper. With him as the precursor, several patrons of learning followed in his wake. Among the most noted of them were Iyeyasu himself and the Emperor Go-Midsunowo. This Emperor, who was the son and successor of the Emperor Go-Yôzei, imitated his father in encouraging the reproduction of books with type, not of wood but of copper as Naoye had done. The book printed under the imperial auspices in 1621 was the fifteen volumes of a Chinese lexicon after the block print issued in China of the Sung dynasty. Prior, however, to the undertaking of the Emperor, Iyeyasu, as ex-Shogun, ordered reprints to be made with copper types at his residential town of Sumpu, now called Shidzuoka, in the province of Suruga. The books reprinted there in 1615 and 1616 were the index of the complete series of the Buddhist Tripitaka and the Extracts from Various Chinese Classics. Besides these, it should be mentioned in his honour as a patron of learning, that he ordered more than one hundred thousand pieces of wooden types to be manufactured for the reprinting of various useful books. From 1599, the year before the decisive battle of Sekigahara, until the end of his Shogunate, Iyeyasu's agent at Fushimi carried on the printing of books with movable wooden types without any cessation. Among the books reprinted there were the Adzuma-kagami, the record of the earlier Kamakura Shogunate, a Chinese political miscellany written at the beginning of the T'ang dynasty, and some old Chinese strategical works.

Not only such illustrious personages as the above-mentioned Emperors, Shogun, and eminent warriors, but men of mediocre means or of unpretentious rank, such as samurai, priests, literati and merchants, also vied with one another in publishing new and old books of Japan as well as of China, by the method of woodblocks or of movable types. Among wealthy merchants the most renowned at that time as the Mecaenas of arts and learning was Yoichi Suminokura. He was born of a rich family living in a suburb of Kyoto, and was himself an enterprising merchant. Moreover, his accomplishments in the Chinese classics and in Japanese versification were far ahead of the average literati of the time, and his skill in calligraphy has been said to be almost incomparable. Out of the immense fortune which he had amassed by trading with continental countries as far as Tonkin and Cochin-China, he spent great sums freely in publishing books, the greater part of which were works famous in Japanese literature. It is said that more than twenty sorts of books were issued by him alone, counting in all several hundred volumes.

What most attracts our attention in his undertakings, however, is the fact that all of these books were printed, not in the movable type then in vogue, but in the wood-block style of old. The new method of printing with type, though introduced several years back and assiduously encouraged by many influential persons, had not been able to demonstrate its advantages to the full. In each edition, whoever might have been the publisher, the number of copies issued had generally not exceeded two hundred, and that the number was so small shows at the same time the narrowness of the reading circle of that age. It proves also that Japan was not yet in any urgent need of seeing books suddenly multiplied by the busy use of movable types. Moreover, many inconveniences, not known in the typography of the West, manifested themselves in the adoption of the new method in a country like the Japan of that time, where Chinese ideographs had been used almost exclusively as the necessary vehicle for expressing thought. We had to provide a great variety of fonts of types, each type-face representing a special ideograph, so that a far larger and more varied assortment of fonts was required than in the case where an alphabet is in use, not to mention that the total number of types had to be enormously augmented out of the necessity of having numerous multiples of the same type. To print sundry accessories alongside Chinese texts, in order to make them easily legible for Japanese students, was another difficulty which was found almost insuperable in the adoption of movable types. The desire of some editors to insert illustrations could not also be fulfilled easily, if the text was to be printed in type, for setting the blocks together with type was considered a very irksome business at a time when printing in type was still in its infancy. They would rather have preferred the single use of wood-blocks to using them together with types. Lastly, as regards those literary works by Japanese authors which Suminokura had fondly put into print, that is to say, in cases where the editor's chief care was the reproduction in facsimile of the manuscript originally executed in fine calligraphic style, movable types entirely failed to serve the purpose. All these disadvantages conspired indeed to frustrate the development of the printing in type, so that the new method was set aside soon after its introduction until the end of the Shogunate. It is certain, however, that the introduction of the use of types in printing, though to a very limited extent, contributed none the less to the general progress of civilisation in Japan, in multiplying books and in stimulating the thirst for knowledge on the part of the general public.

There is no doubt whatever that, in the number of books published in Japan, the beginning of the seventeenth century far surpassed the end of the sixteenth. Bookstores, where books were sold, bought, edited, and published, were now to be found in Kyoto and Yedo, and their business became lucrative enough to be continued as an independent calling. Here the question must naturally arise, how were those multiplied books distributed? There were, besides the priests, especially those belonging to the Zen sect, not a few professional literati, who pursued learning as their chief business. Secretaries in the chancellories of the Shogun and of various daimyo had been generally recruited from that class. Their number, however, had remained comparatively insignificant for a long time during the earlier part of the Shogunate, and they had been classified rather into an exclusive society, which included physicians and Buddhist priests. They had been treated as servants engaged in reading and writing, and not respected as advisers nor revered as leaders of the spirit of the age. However noble might be the profession in which they were engaged, still they were mere professional men, considered good to serve and not apt to lead. The increase in number of such men of letters, it is true, was the cause and the effect of the rise of the cultural level of the country, for it clearly denoted that Japan had begun to appreciate learning more highly than before and hence to demand more of these learned men. But that increase must have naturally stopped short, unless the learning which they taught was imbibed by the people at large and made itself a necessary ingredient of the national life, that is to say, unless the general public had gained thereby more of enlightenment.

For such a continual progress Japan was quite ready. Within half a century, our country had been transformed from an anarchical country of interminable wars to a peaceful land, a land which was non-militaristic to the utmost, though under one of the most elaborate military régimes. That it had been "shut up" against foreign intercourse was, in its main motive, not to ward off the infiltration of Western civilisation in general, but only to achieve a peaceful national progress undisturbed by any intervention of scheming foreign missionaries. The Shogun, who ought to have continued as a military dictator, had been turned into a potentate who cared the least for military matters, though here lurked the danger of losing his raison d'être against the Emperor at Kyoto. The "wisest fool" in Japan was Tsunayoshi, the fifth Shogun of the Tokugawa, who not only founded a college and a shrine for the spirit of Confucius at Yushima in Yedo, the site where now the Educational Museum stands, but was very fond of playing the savant, and himself delivered lectures commenting on Confucian texts before the assembled daimyo in duty bound to listen to him. With a Shogun like him at the head of the government, it should by no means be wondered at that the cultivation of Chinese literature, which formed the greater part of the learning of the time, came into vogue among all of those belonging to the military régime, the daimyo and the samurai of various sorts and grades. Moreover, the samurai of the age themselves, though they professed to be warriors as ever in their essential character, and their training in military exercises had never really significantly relaxed, had ceased to be fighting men by profession as of yore, on account of the long­Up continued tranquillity. Notwithstanding the fact that the reason they had been honoured and respected by the common people was mainly because they were serving the country through their master, the daimyo, at the possible hazard of their lives, they had been obliged gradually not to rely on their martial valour only, but to mould their character and improve their ability, so as to befit themselves to become capable officials, administrators, nay, even statesmen in their own territory and well-bred gentlemen in private life, so as to furnish models to the common people by their personal examples. As they had read Chinese works mainly for this purpose, the kinds of books read were naturally limited, the most preferred being those pertaining to morals and politics, that is to say, Confucian literature and the histories of various Chinese dynasties, all of which were pragmatic enough. Their literary culture, therefore, tended to become rigid, narrow, and utilitarian, though very serious in intention. At first sight it must seem a very paradoxical matter that the learning which had been essentially humanistic in the Ashikaga period should have taken so utilitarian a tendency in the age directly following it. If we, however, once think of the Italian Renaissance metamorphosed into the German Reformation, when it got northward over the Alps, we need not be much embarrassed to understand the seemingly abrupt transition in our country.

It should also be noted that utilitarian studies had not formed the whole of the literary culture of the Tokugawa age. Since the very beginning of the Shogunate down to its fall the humanistic studies handed down by the preceding age had never been entirely swept away from the land. The utilitarian studies above cited had been almost exclusively pursued by those samurai standing directly under the Shogun or under the powerful daimyo whose territories were big enough to be administered as quasi-independent states, and whose governments were on such a scale as to need high statesmanship in order to be well managed. In other words, those who had devoted themselves to the study of the serious sorts of literature had been generally men to whom some opportunities might have been given for allowing them to put into practice what they had learned from books. If these larger territories were to be compared with Prussia and other kingdoms and middle states in the German Confederation, the small states in the same political body would make good counterparts of the petty territories of minor daimyo in Japan. As to those samurai serving the minor daimyo, it had been difficult to make them interested in the perusal of Chinese political works, for their sphere of action was not wide enough to require the territorial affairs being conducted according to high and delicate policies emanating from a profound political principle. In this respect they had much in common with their colleagues residing in the domains directly belonging to the Shogunate. As the governor-in-chief and his principal assistants in each domain had not been taken from the residents of each district, but despatched thither from Yedo, the samurai attached to the locality were merely employed to serve the government of their own district as low-class officials, so that they had little or no hand even in local politics. Some of these samurai were landed proprietors, who, being rich and having little serious business to demand their attention, had ample means and time to dip into books, which could hardly have been of the kind causing self-constraint, for their first motive in reading was only for the sake of distraction. The landed gentry, under the samurai in rank, though wealthier, and generally in charge of village affairs and in control of lesser farmers and peasants, were also found numerously in the domains. They too were the sort of people to be classified in the same catagory as the samurai of the domains. The samurai and gentry gathered in and around second-rate towns in large territories belonging to powerful daimyo may be included also in the same group. It may be, however, premature to suppose that only books belonging to light literature were welcomed by those who resided in districts where the military régime had the least hold. Serious works, such as ethical treatises, for instance, which abound in Chinese literature, were also read there, but rather for the purpose of occupying themselves with metaphysical speculations about moral questions, than in order to regulate their own conduct, private or public, according to the principles taught in them. In short, their thirst for knowledge was purely for the sake of enjoying an intellectual pleasure thereby, and therefore had been quite humanistic. It was here that the true inheritors of the culture of the later Ashikaga were to be sought, and not in places where the influence of the regular samurai was paramount. Needless to say, the centre of this humanistic culture was Kyoto, whose signifiance as the political capital had already been lost, while Yedo represented at its best the culture of the samurai. The Chinese books preferred by these humanistic dillettanti were those pertaining to rhetoric and poetry. They were greatly addicted to practising these branches of literature. Art for art's sake also found a better patron among such people than in the courts of the Shogun and of influential daimyo, where art had rather an applied meaning, represented in ornamental things such as screen and wall paintings down to the miniature- art of the tsuba and the netsuke. Wandering poets, rhetoricians, calligraphers, and artists of various crafts were wont to be far better harboured in districts where the humanistic culture prevailed, than in Yedo or in the residential towns of powerful daimyo, where politics and discipline were all-important. The most significant difference between the two sorts of culture was manifested in a special branch of art, that of painting. In the military circles, the painting of the Kano school was preferred, which was rather rigid in style and had some tincture of the taste highly prized by the Zen-sect priests. On the other hand, what was in vogue among the non-military circles was the so-called "Bunjin-gwa," or paintings of the school of "literati-painter's," which were introduced at the beginning of the Tokugawa period from China, and were characterised by the mellowness of tone prevailing in them and also by a lack of the professional flavour.

Besides these two distinct cultural circles, there arose a third group of people, who entered the cultured arena in the latter half of the seven. teenth century. I mean the bourgeois class in several large cities. After the decline of the trade of the historic city of Sakai, brought about by the hard blow struck at the root of the political power of her haughty merchants by Nobunaga, and caused also by the growth of a rival in the great commercial city of Ôsaka founded by Hideyoshi quite near it, the refined humanistic culture cherished by the citizens of Sakai vanished with its prosperity. After that, it took a considerable while to witness the revival of the cultural influence of the bourgeois class in Japan. The tranquillity, however, which the Tokugawa Shogunate had brought on our country, did not fail to cause such a revival, though not again in Sakai, yet at least in the two greatest commercial centres of the empire. The one was Yedo on the east, and the other Ôsaka on the west. Of these two cities, in affluence Ôsaka, on account of its geographical advantages, was several steps ahead of Yedo. Not only was it near Kyoto, the centre of the humanistic culture as ever, but its remoteness from Yedo had induced its merchants to become more independent than those in the Shogun's own city of the influence of the strong military régime. The culture fostered in the city, therefore, was nearer to that of the non-military circles than that of Yedo. Nay, Ôsaka went still further, even by a great many steps, than Yedo. It was here that Monzayemon Chikamatsu, the first and the greatest dramatist Japan has ever produced, demonstrated his peerless talent at the end of the seventeenth century, and here was also one of the cradles of the modern Japanese theatre. Yedo, however, could not remain long alien to this fresh cultural current initiated in Kyoto and Ôsaka. On account of its growing prosperity brought on by the constant comings in and out of hundreds of daimyo and their numerous retinues, the newly started political capital was soon enabled to rival the senior city of Ôsaka in the liveliness of its urban social life, and in some respects surpassed that of Kyoto. The plutocrats of Ôsaka had also a very close relation with the military régime. This relation, however, consisted in lending large sums of money to various daimyo, many of whom had their warehouses there to deposit therein the produce of their territory, used as pledges for getting advances of money from those merchants, and on that account their pay-masters with their staffs were stationed there to enable them to transact the customary financial business. On the other hand, the merchants of Yedo generally profited by providing, as purveyors and contractors, necessary commodities to the Shogunate and to the daimyo, and therefore depended more closely on the military régime, though some of them also advanced money as did the merchants of Ôsaka. It is said that the richest bourgeois of Yedo, who had amassed immense sums of money at the beginning of the nineteenth century were those who had advanced their moneys at a very high rate of interest to a great many needy hatamoto, who were obliged to garnishee to those merchants their allowances in rice from the Shogunate at fixed intervals, in order to steer securely through stretches of low water or through the straits of Hard-Times in their household economy. On the whole, however, we see a great difference in that the merchants of Yedo were the patronised party in their relations with the warrior-class, while those of Ôsaka were mostly creditors and the military men their debtors. But whatever might have been their difference in general character from the merchants of Ôsaka, the commercial aristocrats of Yedo, induced by their opulence to live a leisurely and very luxurious life, could not fail to become gradually patrons of the bourgeois arts and literature, merely tinged by a little more of the martial element than those of Ôsaka.

Three cultural currents thus ran parallel to one another in the history of the modern civilisation of our country, that of the orthodox samurai with its centre in Yedo, that of court-nobles and county- gentry flowing from Kyoto as its source, and lastly that of the commercial class with its stronghold in Ôsaka. If these three currents had remained irrelative to one another to the last; if, in other words, they had continued for long to belong specially to one of the three distinct and exclusive groups of the nation, then the historic revolution of the Meidji era would not have been effected, and Japan might be in a state but half medieval and half modern. Fortunately, class distinction in our country was not, at that time, so rigid as to hamper absolutely the amalgamation of different classes, and a certain type of culture, which had for a time been but a speciality of one particular class, soon ceased to be so, and was extended to the other classes, and the process necessarily led to the fusion of all the cultures of different types. As one of the causes which hastened such an amalgamation must be mentioned the intermarriage of people of different classes.

At the time when Chinese legislation was first implanted in Japanese soil, there were still minute restrictions concerning interclass-marriages in the Statutes of the Taïhô. Though mésalliances were not forbidden by any explicit law, the offspring of such marriages between freemen and slaves were to follow in class the parent of inferior rank. It is evident, therefore, that such an alliance was stigmatised and severely checked. As to the intermarriages between different classes of freemen, there had been no such restraint, even with respect to the status of their children. That the custom, however, of choosing the empress from members of the Imperial family only, to the exclusion of all vassal families, became gradually confirmed, and that the same custom continued intact until the beginning of the eighth century, shows how such mésalliances had been discouraged in the ancient days of our history. The crowning of a daughter of the Fujiwara as the consort of the Emperor Shômu was the first violation of the long-kept traditional usage regarding the Imperial marriage; and since that time marriages had become very irregular, not only among the members of the Imperial family, but also among the courtiers. The social status of a father was considered sufficient by itself to determine that of his children. No legal scrutiny was thought necessary as to what kind of a woman their mother was, though it was self-evident that the higher the social position of the family from which she sprang, the more the children she gave birth to would be honoured. The establishment of the military régime could effect but very slight change in this domain of social usage, until the beginning of the Tokugawa Shogunate. It must be attributed to this neglect of the maternal lineage in the consideration of pedigrees, that in the most genealogical records of Japan the names of wives, mothers, and daughters are generally omitted, notwithstanding that we are able to trace the names of the male ancestors, sometimes for more than ten centuries backward with tolerable certainty and exactitude.

The establishment of the Shogunate by the Tokugawa could not affect to any great extent the social position of women in general, for in that domain radical alterations were not to be expected from the age in which militarism was all-powerful. There was one thing, however, which was worthy of special notice, concerning the new usage of marriage among the daimyo. As to the right of inheriting their territories, the preference, it is true, had been on the side of the offspring of a legal marriage, for it could not have been otherwise in a society in which the right of primogeniture had been just established for the sake of maintaining the order intact. Yet there existed no rigorous rule through the whole history of the Shogunate, which might be said to have aimed at discouraging mésalliances, and the natural sons of the daimyo were by no means deprived of their right of inheritance on account of the mean origin of their mother. The Shogunate, however, interfered in the marriages of the daimyo, and all of them were obliged to take unto themselves consorts from families of equal rank, that is to say, the legal wife of a daimyo had to be a daughter or sister of another diamyo, one of his equals. Some of the higher daimyo, especially those of the blood of Tokugawa, often married daughters of court-nobles, for the purpose of keeping the latter in close relation with the Shogunate. In the military peerage list of the time the wife of every ruling daimyo had her place together with the heir, alongside of her husband, though even in this case her name used to be omitted, while that of the heir was given. In spite of the fact, therefore, that the intermarriage of the people of different territories had often been prohibited by territorial laws, those daimyo themselves who were desirous of enforcing those laws were obliged to find their legal wives outside of their territory, in other words, to contract an interterritorial marriage. Such a marriage within the circle of the daimyo had of course very little to do with the territorial politics of the daimyo concerned, for most of the ladies chosen as brides were those who had been brought up in their father's residence at Yedo, and after their marriage they had to remain in the same city as hostages to the Shogunate, and not allowed to leave it for their territory. Moreover, as the marriage of the daimyo received the close supervision of the Shogunate, they could have borne very little, if any, political meaning of a sort which might be attached to the intermarriages of different royal families in Europe. Culturally speaking, however, such a marriage had the effect of levelling the ways of living of various diamyo, and making them similar to one another. The bride was usually accompanied into her husband's family by maids, the daughters of her father's vassals, and she was often escorted by a few samurai. These samurai as well as the maids often took service under the daimyo, the husband of the bride, and remained in the train of their lord, after the death of the lady whom they had to serve personally. The number of the samurai who changed masters in this manner, was not naturally large, but they contributed none the less toward the diminishing of the differences in the social life of the various territories.

Generally, however, it was found very difficult for any samurai to leave his master for the purpose of enlisting in the service of some other daimyo. As the samurai had been bound to their lord the daimyo, not only publicly as his officials and warriors, but privately as his domestics, they were not allowed to emigrate freely from their lord's territory. Nevertheless, the legal status of the samurai versus the daimyo had never been the relation of slave and master. No daimyo had absolute control over the person of his samurai, in other words, his sway was far from what might have been called full proprietorship. Against injustice on the part of a daimyo, his samurai had the actual right of appealing to the Shogunate at the risk of suffering a heavy penalty for his affronting his lord by so doing. It was also possible to alienate himself from the service of his master by giving sufficient reasons for it. If he had no reason to do so, then he could abscond, and the extradition of such a deserter was hardly ever rigorously pressed. And if such a vagrant samurai or rônin was found to be a capable warrior or a man of talent in some other line, he could find a position very easily under the daimyo of his adopted territory. In such and like ways the samurai of the Tokugawa period made interterritorial migration more freely than we imagine.

If, concluding from the limited sphere of freedom of the samurai in regard to change of domicile, one should suppose that farmers, merchants, and craftsmen were much more restricted in their moving about inter-territorially, he would be grossly deceived. The samurai was de facto linked almost inseparably to their lord the daimyo, for the link had been firmly cemented, though not by any formal oath of fealty uttered by the samurai, as was the custom in European countries, but by the hereditary relation between his family and that of his master. It became especially so when profound peace settled on Japan during the middle of the Tokugawa period, and if any daimyo had given his samurai the freest choice to leave his territory, very few of them would have availed themselves of their freedom, for by doing so they would have had to part with a great many things which they had long cherished in their hearts. On the whole, the samurai were attached to their daimyo and not to the soil on which they had settled, so that when their master was removed to some new territory by the order of the Shogunate, most of the samurai used to follow their lord and serve him in the new locality. The dialectic peculiarities, which have been vanishing in Japan very rapidly these years, show still a trace of these samurai migrations. If any foreigner should remark a considerable difference in dialect between some provincial town and its suburbs, it shows that the family of the daimyo who was the last to lord it over the territory, was one transplanted there together with the attendant train of samurai by order of the Shogunate in a time not so very remote.

Quite contrary to samurai usage, those people below them in rank held with the daimyo of the territory in which they lived a relationship which was purely public in character. Socially they were treated as men beneath the samurai, and they themselves were content to be treated as such. As a class, however, they had no personal relations with the daimyo, unless through the samurai, to whom the unsufruct of the land which they cultivated had been allotted by the daimyo. In other words, their duty to their territorial lord was nothing but that which they owed as a people governed to a governor who chanced to rule hereditarily over the territory, but might at any time be displaced by somebody else at the pleasure of the Shogunate. Fidelity on their part to the daimyo, therefore, was no personal obligation, nor the result of a reciprocal contract, but only a product of a long history, if any example of such virtue were exhibited. They had no need to follow their daimyo as his samurai used to do, whithersover he might be transferred. On the contrary, all of them remained as a rule in the old territory, in which they continued for long years to pursue their business, and welcomed the newly-appointed daimyo. In this respect they might be said to have been much more fixed to the territory than the samurai. At the same time, as their relations with the daimyo were not very close, their movements were not so vigilantly watched as those of the samurai, and during the Tokugawa period, there went on incessant goings and comings of the lower order in and out of various territories, though very insignificant in character and therefore apparently unnoticed. Summarily speaking, the boundary of the territories of the daimyo was of no practical value in restricting the population within its geographical pale, in spite of the fact that all daimyo, without exception, exercised their right of scrutinising the ingress and egress of travellers at certain fixed barriers on the boundary line. Viewed from the standpoint of the internal migration of people of all classes, Japan was far from being an agglomeration of isolated territories. No wonder that the contemporary culture, springing up from whichever of the three possible sources, could not remain secluded within the confines of particular localities, but gradually permeated the country in every direction, and became one.

Not only inter-territorially, but also in each of the territories themselves, no sort of culture could hold itself for long as the exclusive property of a certain class. In our history, it is true, we had retained a class-system for a very long time, even after the revolution of the Meidji era, and all men had not been equal before the law until very recent times. Nay, to this day we see still some harmless relics of that system in certain regulations preferential to the aristocracy. Regarded as a whole, however, the class-system in Japan has never approached the caste-system of some other countries. If there had been anything like that in our country, it was the distinction of the ordinary people, or we might say, people of the Japanese pur sang, from those whose blood was thought to be polluted. Marriage with the latter set of people had been scrupulously avoided on the part of the former. This antipathy entertained by the majority of the nation against the minority was nearly of the same nature as the anti-Semitic feeling in Europe. The coincidence between the two went so far that in Japan tanners, executioners, and so forth were considered as men of occupations exclusive to the people of polluted blood, just as similar trades in Europe had been relegated to the Jews of the Middle Ages. From the fact that in the newly explored part of the empire, such as the northern part of Honto, the settlements of the so-called people of polluted blood are very few, and therefore the feeling against them there is not so acute as it is in the central or most historic part of the empire, we may safely conclude that such a feeling had its origin in some racial difference and dates from the immemorial past. It is very strange that in Japan, where the population is unquestionably of mixed blood, such an antipathy against a certain set of people should have continued stubbornly even to the present day. On the other hand, we have sufficient grounds for believing that, in the course of our history, not a few people of the pure blood have been classed with the impure on account of some criminal action, or they mingled with the latter from some predilection, out of their own free will.

As to the people who were not stigmatised as impure of blood, it is very difficult to draw a boundary line distinct enough to divide them clearly according to their blood relationship. During the anarchical period of our history from the later Ashikaga to the beginning of the Tokugawa Shogunate, there took place a violent convulsion of the social strata, as the result of the disorder which reigned everywhere. Many talented plebeians had lucky chances to enlist as samurai in the service of some daimyo, while many of the scions of noted warrior families transformed themselves into plebeians, from disgust at their calling of men-slaughterers or from disappointment in their ambitions as warriors. In the time which followed, that is to say, when social order was reëtablished, such a transmutation became exceedingly difficult, as might be supposed. Yet even since then it is not altogether a matter of sheer impossibility. Plebeians of rare merit, especially those who were skilled in certain branches of art and learning, were able to find their way upward without much difficulty. The word "samurai" which had meant a "warrior attending" came to denote a social rank above the plebeians, so that it could include those who pursued a profession which was far from being militaristic, such as men of letters, physicians, painters, -dancers and the like in the retinue of the daimyo. Many territorial bourgeois, too, transformed themselves into samurai by contributing large sums of money to the treasury of their lord, or by purchasing the rank from some poor inheritors of samurai blood who were reduced to extreme penury, so as to be no more able to serve their daimyo as honourable warriors.

Examples of samurai promoted to the daimiate are not numerous since the re-establishment of peace and the social order under the dictatorship of the Tokugawa, for it had become for everybody very difficult to distinguish himself highly by merits other than military, so as to justify sufficiently such a sudden promotion. Still at the beginning of the Tokugawa Shogunate there were many vacant territories, caused by the confiscation of the territories of recalcitrant daimyo. Many families also lost their hereditary lands on account of the extinction of the male line, for the Shogunate did not at first recognise inheritance through an adopted son, a restriction which was later abrogated. Besides, the daimyo in general became wiser and more docile in order not to lose their estates on account of any misdemeanour toward the Shogun. As the result of such changes the later Shogun rarely had vacancies at his disposal by which he could create the new daimyo. If the Shogun had wished to promote somebody in spite of the lack of a vacant lordship, he had to part with a portion of his own demain, but this alienation of land from the Shogun could not be repeated too often without damage to the material resources of the Shogunate. Nevertheless, examples have not been wanting now and then, examples in which not only samurai but even plebeians also were promoted to the rank of dai­ myo, some of them owing to their due merits, or to the blood-relationship with the wives or the natural mother of some Shogun, others by courting the favour of their master. In short, the intruding upwards into the daimyo class was not a matter absolutely impossible for the people in the lower strata.

Inversely the descent to the lower social status was much easier than the ascent to the higher rank in any scale. Nay, for various reasons many persons had been obliged to climb down from their original high position in society to a lower status. As the law of primogeniture grew rigorous in its enforcements on the daimyo and the samurai, the greater part of the scions belonging to these classes could only fully enjoy the privilege of the society in which they were born during childhood, unless extinction of the main line took place. Descendants of daimyo generally gravitated to samurai rank, and those of samurai had to turn themselves into plebeians, in so far as they did not merit to be called to service as independent samurai. Thus the sliding down of classes was necessitated by the law of succession. Could any line of social demarcation be drawn according to the difference of classes in the face of such shiftings upwards and downwards? If it was a difficult matter, then we cannot expect to find any sort of culture monopolised by a certain class to the last. In whichever stratum of society it might have originated, it was sure to penetrate sooner or later into the other classes, and at last the whole people of a territory absorbed a similar and uniform culture. No sort of territorial barriers or social cleavage proved efficient enough to impede the inter-penetration of any cultural movement.

This amalgamation of cultures different in their origins had been accelerated by the introduction of European civilisation. Though the free intercourse of the Japanese with Europeans had been cut short in the third decade of the seventeenth century by the ordinances of the Shogunate, the country had never been absolutely closed against foreigners. No Japanese had been allowed to go abroad for any purpose whatever, but we continued to trade in the specially prescribed port of Nagasaki, not only with Chinese but also with Dutch merchants, though in very restricted forms. Thus while the Japanese had been struggling to mould the new national culture out of promiscuous elements which had existed from aforetime, they had been receiving the Western civilisation, not en masse but drop by drop, so that we had no need this time of the process of rumination in digesting the introduced exotic culture, as we had done as regards Chinese civilisation. The rigorous exclusion, carried to the utmost, of all Christian literature, whatever its relation to our religious tenets might have been, naturally induced men in authority to resort to the safest methods, that is to say, to restrict the kinds of books to be imported to the narrowest scope, and to limit their number to the smallest possible minimum. Accordingly, in the first half of the Tokugawa Shogunate, very few useful books were imported into our country, and the nation had, therefore, a very scanty opportunity of getting knowledge through books about things European. Yet the commodities which these Dutchmen brought to Deshima to be exchanged there or to be presented to the Shogun at Yedo, gave the Japanese who came in contact with them some idea about the modes of life in Europe. Moreover, after the encouragement assiduously given to the study of things European by the Shogun Yoshimune, whose rule covered the greater part of the first half of the eighteenth century, the process of infiltration of Western culture through the narrow door of Nagasaki had become suddenly accelerated. As the encouragement had been induced by the material necessities of the nation, the study of that time about things European was naturally limited to those sciences which were indispensable to the daily life of the people and at the same time far from being spiritual, like astronomy, medicine, botany, and so forth. Would it be possible, however, to ward off successfully the spiritual side of a culture, while taking in the material side of the same with avidity, as if the two parts had not been interwoven inseparably as a single entity? Those branches of Western knowledge, which we did not welcome in the least, but which were none the less useful, as history, and political as well as military sciences became gradually known to the Japanese, though very fragmentarily and slowly. That the diplomatists of the Shogunate had been able to conclude with the foreign powers, which forced our doors to be opened to them against our will, treaties which, though evidently detrimental to our national honour, were the largest concessions we could obtain from them at that time, shows that they had not been entirely ignorant of the condition of the parties with which they had to treat.

Probably there are foreign readers who may entertain some doubt about the lack of the religious element in the Western civilisation which thus flowed into our country from the first half of the eighteenth century. They may well consider, however, the change of religious temperament both in Japan and in European countries, besides the strictest prohibition rigorously exercised by the Japanese authorities. The Thirty Years War, the beginning of which falls in the fourteenth year of the Shogunate of Hidetada, the son and successor of Iyeyasu, is said generally to be the last religious war in Europe fought seriously. But it cannot be denied that in the latter part of the long war, more political than religious elements predominated, and the age which followed the most desolatory war was characterised by its religious toleration. Could the Dutchmen, who were the only people privileged to trade with us, have been expected to set as their first aim the propagation of the Christianity of their Reformed Church rather than material gain by their commerce, as the Portuguese, Spaniards, and Italians are said to have done as regards their Catholicism at the end of the Ashikaga period?

Japan had also changed religiously in the same direction. The end of the Ashikaga period had witnessed many wars which may be called religious, very rare examples since the time of the first introduction of Buddhism. Sectarians of Shinshû or Ikkôshû and of Nichirenshû often fought against one another. Some of them dared also to fight against powerful feudatories, and harassed them. Thus Japan was about to experience a struggle between the spiritual and the temporal powers, as Europe did in the Middle Ages. Nobunaga, therefore, gave countenance to Christian missionaries with a view to curbing the arrogance of Buddhist sectaries by the inroad of the new exotic religion. When the latter, however, proved not less dangerous to the political authority, it was interdicted by Hideyoshi. After all, the persecution of the Christians in Japan was not of religious nature, as in Europe, but essentially political. This explains why persecution could extirpate the seeds of Christianity sown so full of hope in Japan, in spite of its general failure in European countries.

The failure of the Christian propaganda, however, was at the same time the signal of the downfall of the influence of Buddhist sectaries in Japan. Iyeyasu, who had the most bitter experience of the resistance of Ikkô-votaries in his own province, had but to pursue the same religious policy as his predecessor, against Buddhism as well as Christianity. He ordered the personal morals of Buddhist priests to be rigorously supervised, and inflicted the severest punishment on those who violated the law of celibacy. It was natural, therefore, that secular preachers of the Ikkôshû or Shinshû, who made it their rule to lead a matrimonial life, should not have been held in so high a regard as the regular priests of other Buddhist sects, and on that account they had to recruit their believers chiefly among people in the lower strata of society. As to other sects besides the Shinsû, he showed no preference for any one of them, and he often called himself a believer in Buddhism of the Syaka Sect, which meant that he was no sectarian, for there actually existed no such sect in Japan. Such a broad tolerance, however, in religious matters is next door to indifferentism, and paved the way for the dwindling of the religious spirit in the ages to follow, at least in the prominent part of the nation.

Another factor which strengthened the spirit of toleration, or let me say, undermined the religious spirit of the people, was the Confucian philosophy expounded by Chutse, a celebrated savant of the Sung dynasty. This doctrine, which had been accepted by the court-philosophers of the Shogunate as the only orthodox one, was rationalistic to the extreme, so that it struck a heavy blow to many cherished superstitions and destroyed in a remarkable manner the influence which Buddhism had exercised over the mind of the people since many centuries, just like the rationalism of the eighteenth century in Europe, which ruined the authority of the Church and superstition. Yet among the educated society of the age, that is to say, the samurai class, the worship of Buddhist deities continued as before, superficially without any marked change, only because parents had worshipped them and taught their children to do likewise. That they had not been men strictly to be called Buddhist is evident from the fact that most of them had worshipped in Shinto shrines with almost the same devotion as they did in Buddhist temples. It cannot be denied that in their view of human life there was a preponderating Buddhist element, but as it had been since very long ago that our civilisation had become imbued with Buddhism, the Japanese of the Tokugawa period were not conscious of what part of the national culture they specially owed to the Indian religion. In short, religion in the Tokugawa age did not teach what to worship, but what to revere, and toward the latter part of the period we had less necessity to have more of a different religion. How could Christianity force her way into our country in the state such as it was, unless by the endeavour of fanatics? And the Dutch merchants of the eighteenth century were not religious fanatics at all. Through such agents, drops of the secular element in European civilisation were thrown on the cultural soil of Japan, which had been already secularised much earlier than most of the countries in the West. No spiritual consternation had been aroused, therefore, in the cultural world of our country by the intrusion of exotic factors, which only tended to augment the longing for the higher material improvement of the people, by never satiating the desire for it. It is by this stimulus indeed that civilisation, which is prone to become stationary in an isolated country like Japan, escaped the danger of stagnation, and the process of moulding and remoulding the ever new national culture out of the element which she had possessed and that which she had added to her stock since time immemorial, went on silently under cover of the long armed peace, and at last brought forth the Revolution of the Meidji.