The Emperor's Birthday in Japan in 2020

The Emperor's Birthday in Japan in 2020
  How long until The Emperor's Birthday?
This holiday next takes place in 216 days.
  Dates of The Emperor's Birthday in Japan
2021Japan Tue, Feb 23National Holiday
2020Feb 23, Feb 24
JapanMon, Feb 24National Holiday (additional day)
JapanSun, Feb 23National Holiday
2018Dec 23, Dec 24
JapanMon, Dec 24National Holiday (in lieu)
JapanSun, Dec 23National Holiday
2017Japan Sat, Dec 23National Holiday
2016Japan Fri, Dec 23National Holiday
The birthday of the current Emperor of Japan is always celebrated as a national holiday
  Local name
Tennou Tanjyobi

When is The Emperor's Birthday?

Known as 'Tennou Tanjyobi', this holiday is celebrated on the birthday of the current emperor. Thus, if the emperor changes, the national holiday will change to the birthday of the new emperor.

Emperor Akihito's birthday is on December 23rd and this has been the date of the holiday since 1989. Emperor Akihito abdicated on April 30th 2019. Crown Prince Naruhito's birthday on 23 February will instead become the date of the Emperor's Birthday holiday from 2020.

Akihito is the first living monarch to relinquish the Chrysanthemum throne in nearly 200 years.

History of The Emperor's Birthday

According to myth, Japan's first Emperor Jimmu, a descendant of the Sun Goddess Amaterasu, was enthroned in the year 660 BC.

While the historical dates may not be entirely accurate, it is a commonly accepted fact that emperors have reigned over Japan for more than 1500 years, and that they have all descended from the same imperial family.

Despite the fact that the effective power of the emperors was limited or purely symbolic throughout most of Japan's history, all actual rulers, from the Fujiwara and Hojo regents to the Minamoto, Ashikaga and Tokugawa shoguns respected the emperor and were keen in having the imperial legitimization for their position as rulers of Japan.

With the Meiji Restoration of 1868, the Tokugawa shogunate was overthrown, and Emperor Meiji became the head of state. Under the new Meiji constitution, the Emperor held sovereign power, and his political and military power was theoretically close to absolute. In praxis, however, the real power first laid with the oligarchic genro and later with the generals and admirals.

The postwar constitution of 1946 states that the emperor has only a symbolic function. He now mainly participates at ceremonies and diplomatic meetings but has no effective political power.

In 1989, Emperor Akihito became Japan's 125th emperor. He is married to Empress Michiko, the first empress who did not come from the nobility. Their eldest son is Crown Prince Naruhito. The imperial family resides in the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.

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