Interactive graphic shows details of the enthronement ceremony of Emperor Naruhito.


Enthronement ceremony for Japan’s Emperor Naruhito

By Ben Mullins

October 22, 2019 - Dignitaries from over 190 countries will attend the formal enthronement of Emperor Naruhito on October 22, as the 126th ruler of the world’s oldest continuing hereditary monarchy.

The enthronement of 59-year-old Naruhito follows his ascension to the Chrysanthemum Throne on May 1, one day after his father, 85-year-old Akihito, abdicated citing his age and failing health.

Wearing ceremonial sokutai attire, including a voluminous brown-gold outer robe with long and wide sleeves, Naruhito will proclaim his enthronement from the imperial Takamikura throne in the stateroom of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.

Empress Masako will wear a multi-layered kimono known as junihitoe and will sit on a smaller throne called Michodai.

Following Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s congratulatory message, the Emperor and Empress were due to make an enthronement parade through central Tokyo in a custom-made Toyota Century convertible, adorned with imperial chrysanthemum crests.

However, the Japanese government postponed the open-top parade until November 10 in a sign of respect for the victims and families of Typhoon Hagibis. The powerful typhoon left 77 people dead and more than a dozen people missing after it lashed Tokyo and other areas on October 12-13.

Following the roughly 30-minute parade on November 10, the Great Thanksgiving Ceremony known as the Daijosai will take place on November 14-15.

Given the backgrounds of Naruhito and his wife Masako, a former diplomat -- which include extended experience studying and living overseas -- hopes are high that they may be more international in their outlook and closer to the lives of many Japanese.

While the emperor has no political power under Japan’s constitution, the enthronement of Naruhito is still an important moment for the country, as he is the first emperor born after the end of World War II.

PUBLISHED: 18/10/2019; ORIGINAL GRAPHIC: GN39572 ROYALTY: Enthronement of Emperor Naruhito, by Jordi Bou; TECHNICAL SUPPORT: Phil BainbridgeSTORY: Graphic News
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