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Emperor Junnin

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Emperor of Japan
Died10 November 765
Awaji Island (Hyōgo)
Awaji no misasagi (Hyōgo)

Emperor Junnin (淳仁天皇, Junnin-tennō, 733–10 November 765) was the 47th emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession.[2] His reign started in 758 and ended in 764.[3]

Traditional narrative

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Before he became the monarch, this prince's personal name (imina) was Ōi-shinnō (Ōi-no-ō).[4] The posthumous name of Emperor Junnin was given by Emperor Meiji.

He was the seventh son of Prince Toneri, a son of Emperor Temmu.[5] His father died when he was at the age of three, and he was given no rank nor office of the court.

In the older Japanese documents, he was often referred as the "unthroned emperor" (廃帝, Haitei).

Events of Junnin's life

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His fate was changed in 757 when Empress Kōken named him as her heir (crown prince).

Junnin caused grain storage centers (Jōheisō) to be established in the provinces. The government stored rice from the years of good harvests. This rice was used to control higher prices when harvests of rice were not good. The Jōheisō were abolished during the Kamakura period.[10]

After his death

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The mausoleum (misasagi) of Emperor Junnin in Awaji Province.

The actual site of Junnin's grave is known.[1] This emperor is traditionally venerated at a memorial Shinto shrine (misasagi) at Awaji.[11]

The Imperial Household Agency designates this location as Junnin's mausoleum. It is formally named Awaji no misasagi.[12]

In 1870, Emperor Meiji conferred the posthumous name and title by which he is now known.

Era of Junnin's reign

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The years of Junnin's reign are identified by a single era name.[13]

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The chrysanthemum symbol of the Japanese emperor and his family
  1. 1.0 1.1 Imperial Household Agency (Kunaichō), 淳仁天皇 (47); retrieved 2011-10-26.
  2. Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial House of Japan, p. 59.
  3. Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, pp. 75-78; Brown, Delmer et al. (1979). Gukanshō, p. 275; Varley, H. Paul. (1980). Jinnō Shōtōki. p. 143-144.
  4. Brown, Gukanshō, p. 275; Varley, p. 143.
  5. Brown, p. 275.
  6. Titsingh, p. 75; Brown, p. 275.
  7. Varley, p. 44; a distinct act of senso is unrecognized prior to Emperor Tenji; and all sovereigns except Jitō, Yōzei, Go-Toba, and Fushimi have senso and sokui in the same year until the reign of Emperor Go-Murakami. Compare Imperial Household Agency (Kunaichō), Ceremony of Accession (Sokui-no-Rei); retrieved 2011-12-23.
  8. Appert, Georges. (1888). Ancien japon, pp. 29-30.
  9. Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Junnin Tennō" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 437.
  10. Nussbaum, "Jōheisō" at p. 429.
  11. Junnin did not appear on the official List of Emperors of Japan until the late 19th century.
  12. Ponsonby-Fane, p. 420.
  13. Titsingh, pp. 75-78.
Preceded by
Empress Koken
Emperor of Japan

Succeeded by
Empress Shōtoku