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THE LIBRARY

OF

THE UNIVERSITY

O^ CALIEORNIA

LOS ANGELES

IN MEMORY OF

CARROLL ALCOTT

PRESENTED BY

CARROLL ALCOTT MEMORIAL
LIBRARY FUND COMMITTEE



Kc









WJM

THE MUSJIEE.



4



lln



ILLUSTRATED LIBRARY OF \..^,.„^



JAPAN IN OUR DAY



COMPILED AND ARRANGED BY

BAYARD TAYLOR



REVISED BY

WILLIAM ELLIOT GRIFFIS



NEW YORK

CHARLES SCRIBNER'S SONS

1893-



Copyright, i88i, 1892, by
CHARLES SCRIBNER'S SONS



TROW DIRECTORY

PniNTrNQ AND BOOKBINDINQ COMPAMT

NEW YORK



bs



PREFATORY NOTE



THE rapid change in the policy of the Japanese
Government, which is now opening the Empire
to the arts and ideas of modern civilization, has been
followed by a corresponding increase in our knowl-
edge of the Japanese institutions and people. The
compiler's object has been to select all that is newest
and most interesting in the works of recent visitors
to Japan, in order to make this volume a tolerably
complete gallery of pictures, representing the life
and customs of the Japanese at this time. Many
strange and peculiar features of that life will very
soon pass away, and already some of the experiences
related by Sir Rutherford Alcock and M. Humbert
could not be repeated. It is believed, therefore, that
the information contained in this volume will be
found not only attractive in itself, but convenient as
a standard by which to measure the great changes
which science and the mechanic arts will effect in
the condition of the Japanese Empire.

B. T.



146:?SSG



REVISER'S NOTE

IN April, 1878, just before Mr. Bayard Taylor left
JSTew York to fill the honored position of Ameri-
can Minister at the Court of Berlin, the reviser of
this, his work, enjoyed the pleasure of meeting him
and chatting upon Japan, which country he had vis-
ited when a member of Commodore M. C. Perry's
expedition in 1854. In re-editing Mr. Taylor's com-
pilation, which has so long enjoyed deserved popu-
larity, the object has been to maintain its character
as an illustrated work of travel. Obsolete state-
ments have been eliminated. Fresh selected and
original material has been added, with just enough
of history to give the reader an intelligent idea of
the causes and processes of the profound changes
which have made Japan a new nation. The geo-
graphical and other proper names have been ex-
pressed according to the standard orthography and
pronunciation of Tokio, the Imperial capital.

W. E. G.

Boston, February 17, 1892.



CONTENTS



CHAPTER I.

PAGE

Earliest Intercourse with Japan, .... 1



CHAPTER II.
Japanese History 7

CHAPTER III.
The Opening of Japan, 15

CHAPTER IV.
Mr. Harris's Journey to Yedo, 23

CHAPTER V.
Mr. Alcock's Ascent of Fuji-Yama, .... 38

CHAPTER VI.
Alcock's Overland Journey from Nagasaki to Yedo, 48

CHAPTER VII.
M. Humbert's Voyage from Nagasaki to Yedo, . G3

CHAPTER VIII.
Residence at Yokohama, 6®



VI CONTENTS

CHAPTER IX.

PAGE

Excursion to Kamakuka, 79

CHAPTER X.
The Highway to Yedo, 94

CHAPTER XI.
Life in Yedo, 100

CHAPTER XII.
Walks in Yedo, 109

CHAPTER XIII.
The Residence op the Tycoon, 124

CHAPTER XrV.
The Citizens' Quarter, 130

CHAPTER XV.
Recreations and Domestic Customs, .... 142

CHAPTER XVI.
Japanese Festivals and Theatres, .... 154

CHAPTER XVII.
The Gymnasts and Wrestlers 1G5



CONTENTS VI 1

CHAPTER XVIII.

PAGB

Scenes around Tokio, 174

CHAPTER XIX.
Popular Superstitions, 188

CHAPTER XX.
New-Year's Eve in Tokio, 1872, 195

CHAPTER XXI.
Japanese Art, Artists, and Artisans, . . . 206

CHAPTER XXII.

The Japanese and their Mythology, . . . 226

CHAPTER XXIII.
The Literary Age of Japan, ..... 237

CHAPTER XXIV.
Japanese Exploits Abroad, 249

CHAPTER XXV.
A Jaunt in Echizen, 255

CHAPTER XXVI.
An Outline op Japanese History, .... 267



viii CONTENTS



CHAPTER XXVII.

PAGE

The Wonderful City of Tokio, 273



CHAPTER XXVIII.
The Resources of Japan, 286



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

The Musmee, Frontispiece

FACING
PAGE

HiDEYOSHi IX Early Life, 11

The Mikado Receiving the Sho-guns' Homage, . . 13

Buddhist Temple, 26

Samurai and Servant, 34

Fuji-San from Suruga Bay, 37

Climbing the Cone op Fuji-Yama, .... 44

The Town and Straits op Shimonoseki, ... 53

Fishing by Night, 66

Japanese Bettos, 70

Japanese Ladies going to Pay a Visit, ... 72

Mountaineer Crossing a Gorge, 76

Laborer in Winter Costume, 78

Cook Returning from Market, 104

Prisoner in Kago, 127

Restaurant in the Old Style, 138

Japanese Theatre— Scenes Before the Curtain, . 14'3

The Wedding Ceremony, 140



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS



FACrNQ
PAO£



Japanese Feats at Balancing, 150

Tortoise Chabmer, 151

Japanese Wrestlers, ....... 158

Entrance to a Japanese Tavern, . . . . 178 *

A Japanese School, 338






"^^^^^



TRAVELS IN JAPAN

CHAPTER I.

EARLIEST INTERCOURSE WITH JAPAN

ALTHOUGH the history of the Japanese, as an
organized and civilized people, extends back
beyond the Christian era, the ancient geographers
were ignorant of the very existence of the Empire.
The first notice of Japan ever given to the world is
found in the travels of Marco Polo, who heard of
the country, under the name of Zipangu, at the court
of Kublai Khan (in Peking), at the close of the thir-
teenth century. This is his brief description : —

" Zipangu is an island in the Eastern Ocean, sit-
uate at the distance of about fifteen hundred miles
from the mainland of Manji [Mantchooria ? ]. It is
of considerable size ; its inhabitants have fair com-
plexions, are well made, and are civilized in their man-
ners. Their religion is the worship of idols. They
are independent of every foreign power, and governed
only by their kings. They liave gold in the greatest
abundance, its sources being inexhaustible ; but as
the king does not allow of its being exported, few
merchants visit the country, nor is it frequented by
much shipping from other ports. To this circum-
stance we are to attribute the extraordinary richness



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2 TRAVELS IN JAPAN

of tlie sovereign's palace, according to what we are
told bj those who have had access to the place. The
entire roof is covered with a plating of gold, in the
same manner as we cover houses, or more properly
churches, with lead. The ceilings of the halls are of
the same precious metal ; many of the apartments
have small tables of pnre gold, considerably thick,
and the windows also have golden ornaments. So
vast, indeed, are the riches of the palace, that it is
impossible to convey an idea of them. In this island
there are pearls also in large quantities, of a red
color, round in shape, and of great size ; equal in
value to, or even exceeding, that of the white pearls.
It is customary with one part of the inhabitants to
bury their dead, and with another part to burn them.
The former have a practice of putting one of these
pearls into the mouth of the corpse. There are also
found there a number of precious stones.

" Of so great celebrity was the wealth of this island,
that a desire was excited in the breast of the Grand
Khan Kublai, now reigning, to make the conquest of
it, and to annex it to his dominions."

Japan was first really discovered — that is, made
known to Europe from actual observation — nearly
fifty years after the discovery of America. In the
year 1539, a Portuguese vessel, bound for Macao, was
driven far out of her course by a tempest, and finally
arrived in the harbor of Biingo, on the Japanese
island of Kiushin, the most southerly of the five
great islands of the Empire. Although the Japanese,
on account of their previous wars with China, were
cautious and vigilant in their intercourse with



EARLIEST INTERCOURSE WITH JAPAN 3

foreigners, there was no prohibition of sucli inter-
course, and the Portuguese were kindly received.
The latter took advantage of their accident, and made
a treaty with the Prince of Bungo, by which a Por-
tuguese vessel was to be sent every year, for the pur-
poses of commerce. In 1542, several Jesuit priests,
among them the distinguished Francis Xavier, went
to Japan, in order to undertake the conversion
of the people. They were heartily welcomed, not
only in the province of Bungo, but throughout the
entire countrj-. The Portuguese were as free to
preach as to trade, and for twenty years or more
both avocations flourished without interruption. In
the year 1585, an embassy of seven Japanese Chris-
tians visited Rome, and by the end of the century the
number of converts was estimated at two hundred
thousand. The Portuguese trade, through the ports
of Bungo, Hirado, and Nagasaki, became so lucrative
that Macao rose to be one of the wealthiest cities of
the East.

In April, 1600, the first Dutch vessel, piloted by
an English sailor named William Adams, reached
Japan. After some delay and suspicion on the part
of the Japanese, the Dutch captain was allowed to
dispose of his cargo and leave, but Adams was re-
tained, on account of his knowledge of mathematics
and ship-building. He was very well treated, but
remained a compulsory resident of Japan until his
death, twenty years later. Meanwhile the Dutch
had followed up their advantage, and maintained a
limited trade through the port of Hirado in spite
of the protestations of the Portuguese. The Eng-



4 TRAVELS IN JAPAN

lish, also, while Adams was yet living, obtained the
same privilege, but their commercial intercourse was
slight, and was finally discontinued, because it did
not prove very profitable.

The persecution of the native Christians by the
Japanese Government had already commenced. It
appears that the Franciscan and Dominican orders
had followed in the wake of the Jesuits, and that
the jealousy of these three sects, together with their
increasing defiance of the Japanese authority, had
given rise to frequent and serious troubles. Crosses,
shrines, and churches were erected in prohibited
places ; religious processions were led through the
very streets of Kioto, and the hostility of the Gov-
ernment needlessly provoked in other ways. Once
thoroughly aroused, it manifested itself in the most
inhuman forms. Nevertheless, after the massacres of
1612 and 1614, the Portuguese continued to import
missionaries, in violation of tlie imperial order; where-
upon their intercourse with Japan was restricted to
the little island of Deshima, in the harbor of JSTagasaki.

The closing episode of this history was brought
about by the capture of a Portuguese vessel off the
Cape of Good Hope, by the Dutch. Among other
things found on board the prize, there were certain
treasonable letters to the King of Portugal, written
by a native Japanese, who had long been a principal
agent of the Portuguese in the country, and was a
devout Catholic. These letters (according to Dutch
authority) revealed a plot by which the Portuguese
were to unite with the Japanese Christians, overturn
the old empire, and establish a new and Christian



EARLIEST INTERCOURSE WITH JAPAN 5

dynast3% The Dutch Government immediately de-
spatched these documents to Japan ; it was a wel-
come opportunity of overthrowing the influence of
their hated rivals, and securing for themselves the
monopoly of trade. The evidence on both sides
must be received with caution ; indeed, in this whole
history, we can only be certain in regard to the re-
sults. The Japanese agent denied the authorship of
the letters, which the Portuguese also assert to have
been Dutch forgeries ; but the former was burned at
the stake, and an imperial proclamation was issued
(in 1637) decreeing that " the whole race of the
Portuguese, with their mothers, nurses, and what-
ever belongs to them, shall be banished forever."

The same proclamation set forth that no Japanese
ship or boat, or any native of Japan, should hence-
forth presume to quit the country under pain of for-
feiture and death ; that any Japanese returning from
a foreign country should be put to death ; that no
nobleman or soldier should be suffered to purchase
anything of a foreigner ; that any person presuming
to bring a letter from abroad, or to return to Japan
after he had been banished, should die, with all his
family, and that whoever presumed to intercede for
such offenders should be put to death ; that all per-
sons who propagated the doctrines of the Christians
or bore that scandalous name should be seized and
imprisoned as felons — with many other provisions of
the same nature. This was the befrinning of the ex-
elusive system of Japan, which was maintained for a
little more than two hundred years.

The final persecution and extermination of the



6 TRAVELS IN JAPAN

Japanese Christians followed this decree. The town
of Shimabara, in which thej had taken refuge, Avas
battered down by the aid of Dutch cannon, and a
general slaughter followed. This was apparently the
end of Catholic Christianity in Japan. But the
Dutch, instead of obtaining more liberal conditions
of trade in return for their services, were obliged to
be content with the same limitation of intercourse
which had previously been imposed upon the Portu-
guese. They were restricted to the little island of
Deshima, six hundred feet in length hy two hundred
and forty in breadth, in the harbor of Nagasaki, and
thus, jnst a hundred years after the first discovery of
Japan, the isolation of the Empire was established.

Having once accepted the conditions, however, the
Dutch continued to observe them. The residence on
Deshima was burdened with restrictions, some of
which were positively degrading : the trade was lim-
ited to two vessels a year, and the privilege of an an-
nual journey to Yedo was afterward changed to a
journey once in four years. The best reason which
can be given for the continuation, by the Japanese
Government, of a privilege of such slight commercial
importance, must be found in that curiosity which is
such an important element in the character of the
race. Although determined to isolate themselves
from the rest of the world, they were still anxious to
know what was going on in other nations ; and when
the empire was finally opened to general intercourse,
there was already a class of officials sufficiently well
informed to comprehend the extent and importance of
the new relations which the Government had assumed.



CHAPTER II.

JAPANESE HISTORY

KAMPFER, Klaprotli, and other earlier writers
have given outlines of the liistory of Japan,
from such materials as were accessible to them.
Like that of China, and other ancient Asiatic na-
tions, the thread of actual events is so blended with
fable and fiction that it is no easy matter to separate
it : the further we recede in the past, the more con-
fused becomes the narrative, until we finally reach a
point where everything is uncertain.

The traditional or fabulous portion of Japanese
history extends beyond our era ; but it will only be
necessary to note those prominent characters or
events which may be accepted as having a basis of
fact. The Japanese believe that Jimmu, their first
emperor, began his reign b.c. 660. Yamato Dake
no Mikoto, is supposed to have lived during the sec-
ond century. He was a famous military chieftain,
belonging to the imperial family, and achieved the
conquest of the eastern and northern portions of the
island of the Kuanto, or the Broad East, which is
that part of Hondo, or the main island of Japan, lying
east of the Hakone Mountains.

The Empress Jingu is another famous, and prob-
ably historical, character. She conquered Corea and



8 TRAVELS IN JAPAN

made it tributary to Japan, in the third century,
suppressed a powerful rebellion in Kiushiu, and left
a well-established empire to her son 0-jin. During
the reign of the latter, Chinese letters were intro-
duced into Japan. In the sixth century the Bud-
dhist faith began to displace the older Shinto re-
ligion, which consisted chiefly of prayers, without
any distinct idea of a Being to whom to pray, except
that white paper, or a mirror, was used as a symbol
of purity. The Buddhist faith not only included
this, but supplied, in addition, the idea of a pure life,
and final absorption into the Deity, through self-
denial. Hence it spread very rapidly ; and its intro-
duction, by way of China, brought with it various
Chinese customs, which somewhat modified the Jap-
anese institutions, such as the degrees of rank among
Government officials.

There were other wars with Corea about the mid-
dle of the seventh century, and about the same time
the northern island of Yezo was brought under sub-
jection to Japan. The capital of the empire, which
was then divided into eight provinces, some of which
were usually in a state of revolt, was fixed at Kioto,
about the year 800. For three or four centuries
after this, the history of Japan is that of several of
its prominent families, the members of which succes-
sively acquired the imperial power. The principal
of them are the Fujiwara, Sngawara, Minamoto,
and Tachibana. Their rivalry, of course, gave rise
to violent civil wars, during which certain individuals
acquired power and fame, but the condition of the
country and people did not greatly improve.



JAPANESE HISTORY 9

Dui-ing the twelfth century there was a memorable
struggle between the Gen or Minamoto, and the
Iloi or Taira, family. In the first great battle the lat-
ter obtained the victory, and Kiyomori, its chief, re-
ceived the government of a province. He became
prime minister, and one of the most energetic and
nnscimpulous which Japan had ever known. After
the death of the emperor, the latter's successor, a
mere boy, married the daughter of Kiyomori, who
was practically the ruler for ten years. He died in
1181, leaving a noble name in Japanese history.
After his death, however, the rival family, the Mina-
moto, overthrew the Taira dynasty, and extermi-
nated, as was then supposed, everyone who bore the
name.

Yoritomo, the head of the Minamoto family, ruled
in the name of the Mikado, and gave him i-everence,
but established the seat of government atKamakni-a,
a place about twelve miles from Yokohama. He
took control of the military and the treasury, and re-
ceived the title of Sei-i Tai Sho-gun. Thus began
the line of sho-guns which lasted until 1868. Under
this dual govermnent the counti-y had peace. Yori-
tomo died in 1199, and is generally regarded by the
Japanese as the greatest hero in their history. Ka-
makura was the seat of actual government until
about A.D. 1600. In the time of the Jesuits, when
Yedo had succeeded to the distinction, the population
still numbered 20,000.

The Minamoto line came to an end in a.d. 1219,
the Hojo family of rulers succeeding at Kainakura.
About 1281 Japan was summoned to pay tribute to



10 TRAVELS IN JAPAN

China, and a large military force was sent to enforce
the demand, but the " invincible armada " of the
Mongols was scattered by a storm, 30,000 men
drowned, or slain after reaching the shore, and the
ambassadors of Kublai Khan beheaded.

The Hojo rulers held power until 1333, when they
were overthrown by a popular hero, Nitta Yoshisada,
and for two years, the Mikado swayed the sceptre
alone without a sho-gnn. From 1336 there was civil
war between two rival claimants for the throne, the
" northern " and the "southern" dynasties carrying
on "the war of the chrysanthemums." Ultimately,
the " northern," or " false " emperors yielded, the
" southern " line being legitimized in Japanese his-
tory. From 1336 to 1573, a line of sho-guns of the
Ashikaga family held court at Kamakura or Kioto,
but nearly the whole period is one of civil war. It
was while this period was drawing to a close that
Christianity, fire-arms, and Western civilization were
introduced into Japan.

The freedom allowed to the first Jesuit missionaries
is partly explained by the distracted condition of the
Empii-e at that time. The central power was too weak
to assert any particular authority, and the rival fac-
tions too seriously engaged to notice an innovation, in
which they probably saw no danger. It was not until
about 1570 that the chief, Nobunanga, succeeded in
establishing his power, and thus restoring some degree
of order. He was joined by lyeyas, still a young
man, but already noted for his great adjninistrative
abilities. Nobunan^a first commenced a crusade
against the Buddhist priests, who were equally power-



JAPANESE HISTORY 11

ful and arrogant. He took from them the great
castle of Osaka, which had been one of their principal
temples, and for a time encouraged the Jesuits for
his own purposes. He overthrew the power of many
families, and made his will supreme throughout the
Empire, although he was never the actual ruler.

By the year 1582, jSTobunanga had subjugated
nearly the whole of Japan, but when in the fulness
of his power was attacked and killed by the soldiers
of a noble whom he had insulted. He was forty -nine
years of age at his death. Hideyoshi, who succeeded
to the power, and lyeyas, already governor of eight
provinces, were his two generals. The former was a
man of low birth, who had risen by his native daring
of chai'acter and great military talent. lyeyas, wdio
was his superior in talent, and possibly in influence,
was one of those men who never undertake to hasten
what they feel to be their ultimate destiny. He only
resisted Hideyoshi's pretensions sufficiently to make
liimself properly respected, and then acquiesced in
the cunning upstart's plans.

Hideyoshi's rule, which lasted until 1598, is notable
chiefly for an invasion of Corea, at first successful,
but with no final result, and for his course toward
the Christians, both native and foreign. He at first
encouraged the latter, following the policy of his
predecessor ; but when the Buddhist temples were
burned, the priests assailed, and the new sect showed
itself as haughty and intolerant as the old, he began
to adopt measures of repression. The five Franciscan
monks, whom he ordered to be executed at Nagasaki
in 1587, had repeatedly violated his commands and



12 TRAVELS IN JAPAN

defied liis authority ; the Jesuit writers themselves
attribute to the Franciscans the responsibility of the
persecution of the Japanese Christians.

The same policy seems to have influenced lyeyas,
who succeeded Hideyoshi. He was a leader of re-
markable military genius, who wery rarely knew wliat
it was to be defeated. Eveiy revolt against liis au-
thority was suppressed, and he remained for eighteen
years supreme ruler of Japan. The fact that the
Christians took sides against him in the great rebel-
lion of 1600 goes far to account for his later severity
towai'd them. Nevertheless, even the Jesuit writers
give lyeyas credit for the moderation and sagacity
with which he exercised his power. He pardoned as
frequently as he punished ; his great aim seems to
have been to establish a central authority strong
enough to control the semi-independent provinces,
and thereby both strengthen the power and favor the
development of the Japanese race.

lyeyas, like all previous sho-guns, claimed descent
from the Minamotos. In 1604: he received from the
Emperor in Kioto the coveted title, and being the
founder of Yedo, he made this town a great city and
the seat of government of the Mikado's lieutenant.
Yedo was situated in what was then considered a re-
mote part of the empire, the inhabitants of which were
looked upon as rude and unpolished. When lyeyas
first took possession of the castle, Yedo consisted only
of one street. It increased very much in size under
his care, and through the residence of the court, the
daimios, and their wives and families; and in no long
time became a city of great commercial importance.







THE MIKADO RECEIVING THE SHO-GUN's HOMAGE.



JAPANESE HISTORY 13

The Jesuit writers, in 1607, state that 300,000
workmen were then employed upon the imperial
castle in Yedo.

When Ijeyas died, he left his son Hidetada as his
successor. Very valuable is the " Legacy " or code of
laws, or rather rules of political action, attributed to
him. This code, which is partly drawn from the
works of Confucius and Mencius, is characterized by
great shrewdness and knowledge of human natui-e.
Many of the one hundred rules apply to existing in-
stitutions or habits of society, and have therefore only
a local importance ; but there are some of a general na-
ture, which might be profitably adopted by all nations.

The document further records that lyeyas had
fought ninety battles, and had had eighteen narrow
escapes from death — wherefore he erected eighteen


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