No.1 “National isolationism”


The Story of The Commodore Perry’s visit to Japan

“National isolationism” 日本語版 P1-P2

We have called national isolationism with some regulations such as prohibition of Christianity, regulations of external trading by Tokugawa shogunate, prohibition of visiting foreign countries by Japanese.

At the first, Ieyasu Tokugawa had been active to external trading with promotion of “ Red seal trade”. He had had plan to set Uraga port as a international trading port with an advisor Mr.Anjin Miura  “British William Adams”. But gradually Spain had started to show their ambition of territory and impacts of huge profits that was made by external trading and christians who had not cared about political regulations. Then he let external trading as an under control of Tokugawa shogunate and prohibited christianity even farmers in several domains.

 The national isolationism had been performed since 1633 to 1639 for 5 times with the series of declarations of isolationism.

 It was called that “ The law since Kanei era” when commodore Perry came.

Although even 3rd general of Tokugawa shogunate Iemitsu Tokugawa had started national isolationism in general it didn’t mean no contact with foreign countries.

 In under control of national isolationism, they had kept connecting with Korea and Ryukyu setting them as “official correspondence countries” then Korea had traded with Tsushima domain and Ryukyu had traded with Satsuma domain.

On the other hand, China and Netherland had been set as “trade countries” as it had been lower status than Korea and Ryukyu. Dejima in Nagasaki prefecture had been set as a liaison. This place  was narrow but it costed too much so Netherlands were not satisfied with that.

The word “ national isolationism” appeared first time in history in  first year of Kyowa era (in 1801) when Dr. Kenperu who had been in Japan as a doctor belonging East India Company wrote a book named “Diary in Japan” then Mr. Tadao Shizuki Dutch translator translated it as “National isolationism”. Honoring monument for Dr. Kenner has been established in Hakone mountain.

“Anjin Miura (William Adams)”

“He is a blued eyes British Samurai who helped Ieyasu Tokugawa to take Japan.” we can call him like that when we want to describe him in one sentence. After he arrived at Usuki city, Oita prefecture by the Liefde ship then he met Ieyasu Tokugawa just before the battle of Sekigahara. The Liefde ship was brought to Uraga in Miura peninsula through Osaka. It is called that the weapons and firearms which were piled up on the Liefde ship helped Tokugawa side to win in the battle of Sekigahara. Mr.Anjin told proper world situation and a geometry and an astronomy.

 His best achievement more than anything was that he worked as a diplomatic adviser with neutral side to advise Ieyasu. That has led to Japan not to be invaded by foreign countries and established diplomatic relations with them.

 He has been the only foreigner who became a lord of lands and he received 250koku (hereditary) in Hemi village( Hemi town, Yokosuka city) and became a Hatamoto which was a direct retainer of a shogun. His cemetery has been located on the top of the Tsukayama park while watching over from afar Edo.


やきとり竜馬におまかせ 斉藤秀一

経営コンサルタント堀込孝繁 氏 の共著

『ペリー来航始末記 日本語版』