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  • Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Apr 29, 1901

    Born

    Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Apr 29, 1901

    Born in Tokyo's Aoyama Palace (during the reign of his grandfather, Emperor Meiji) on 29 April 1901, Hirohito was the first son of 21-year-old Crown Prince Yoshihito (the future Emperor Taishō) and 17-year-old Crown Princess Sadako (the future Empress Teimei). He was the grandson of Emperor Meiji and Yanagihara Naruko. His childhood title was Prince Michi.




  • Tokyo, Japan
    Jul, 1901

    Hirohito was removed from the court and placed in the care of the family of count Kawamura Sumiyoshi

    Tokyo, Japan
    Jul, 1901

    On the 70th day after his birth, Hirohito was removed from the court and placed in the care of the family of Count Kawamura Sumiyoshi, a former vice-admiral, who was to rear him as if he were his own grandchild. At the age of 3, Hirohito and his brother Yasuhito were returned to court when Kawamura died – first to the imperial mansion in Numazu, Shizuoka, then back to the Aoyama Palace.




  • Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Jul 30, 1912

    Hirohito became The Heir Apparent

    Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Jul 30, 1912

    When his grandfather, Emperor Meiji, died on 30 July 1912, Hirohito's father, Yoshihito, assumed the throne, and Hirohito became the heir apparent. At the same time, he was formally commissioned in both the army and navy as a second lieutenant and ensign, respectively, and was also decorated with the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Chrysanthemum.




  • Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Nov 02, 1916

    Hirohito was formally proclaimed Crown Prince and Heir Apparent

    Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Nov 02, 1916

    Hirohito was formally proclaimed Crown Prince and heir apparent on 2 November 1916; but an investiture ceremony was not strictly necessary to confirm this status as heir to the throne.




  • Tokyo, Japan
    1920

    The Rank of Major in The Army

    Tokyo, Japan
    1920

    In 1920 Hirohito was promoted to the rank of Major in the army and Lieutenant Commander in the navy.




  • Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Nov 29, 1921

    Hirohito became Regent of Japan

    Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Nov 29, 1921

    Hirohito became Regent of Japan (Sesshō) on 29 November 1921, in place of his ailing father who was affected by a mental illness.




  • Tokyo, Japan
    1923

    The Rank of Lieutenant-Colonel in The army

    Tokyo, Japan
    1923

    In 1923 he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel in the army and Commander in the navy.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Dec 27, 1923

    Daisuke Namba attempted To assassinate Hirohito

    Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Dec 27, 1923

    On 27 December 1923, Daisuke Namba attempted to assassinate Hirohito in the Toranomon Incident but his attempt failed. During interrogation, he claimed to be a communist and was executed, but some have suggested that he was in contact with the Nagacho faction in the Army.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Jan 26, 1924

    Marriage

    Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Jan 26, 1924

    Prince Hirohito married his distant cousin Princess Nagako Kuni (the future Empress Kōjun), the eldest daughter of Prince Kuniyoshi Kuni, on 26 January 1924. They had two sons and five daughters.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    1925

    The Rank of Colonel in The army

    Tokyo, Japan
    1925

    In 1925 he was promoted to army Colonel and Navy Captain.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Dec 25, 1926

    Hirohito assumed The Throne

    Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Dec 25, 1926

    On 25 December 1926, Hirohito assumed the throne upon the death of his father, Yoshihito. The Crown Prince was said to have received the succession (senso).


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Nov, 1928

    The Coronation

    Tokyo, Japan
    Nov, 1928

    In November 1928, the Emperor's ascension was confirmed in ceremonies (sokui) which are conventionally identified as "enthronement" and "coronation" (Shōwa no tairei-shiki); but this formal event would have been more accurately described as a public confirmation that his Imperial Majesty possesses the Japanese Imperial Regalia, also called the Three Sacred Treasures, which have been handed down through the centuries.


  • Inner Manchuria, China
    1931

    The Mukden Incident

    Inner Manchuria, China
    1931

    Starting from the Mukden Incident in 1931, Japan occupied Chinese territories and established puppet governments. Such "aggression was recommended to Hirohito" by his chiefs of staff and prime minister Fumimaro Konoe, and Hirohito never personally objected to any invasion of China.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Aug 05, 1931

    the Deputy Minister of the Japanese Army instructed not to use the term "prisoners of war" for Chinese captives

    Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Aug 05, 1931

    According to Akira Fujiwara, Hirohito endorsed the policy of qualifying the invasion of China as an "incident" instead of a "war"; therefore, he did not issue any notice to observe international law in this conflict (unlike what his predecessors did in previous conflicts officially recognized by Japan as wars), and the Deputy Minister of the Japanese Army instructed the Chief of staff of Japanese China Garrison Army on August 5 not to use the term "prisoners of war" for Chinese captives. This instruction led to the removal of the constraints of international law on the treatment of Chinese prisoners. The works of Yoshiaki Yoshimi and Seiya Matsuno show that the Emperor also authorized, by specific orders (rinsanmei), the use of chemical weapons against the Chinese.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Jan 09, 1932

    The Sakuradamon Incident

    Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Jan 09, 1932

    Hirohito narrowly escaped assassination by a hand grenade thrown by a Korean independence activist, Lee Bong-chang, in Tokyo on 9 January 1932, in the Sakuradamon Incident.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Feb 26, 1936

    The February 26 Incident

    Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Feb 26, 1936

    The assassination of moderate Prime Minister was followed by an attempted military coup in February 1936, the February 26 incident, mounted by junior Army officers of the Kōdōha faction who had the sympathy of many high-ranking officers including Prince Chichibu (Yasuhito), one of the Emperor's brothers. This revolt was occasioned by a loss of political support by the militarist faction in Diet elections. The coup resulted in the murders of a number of high government and Army officials.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Feb 29, 1936

    The February 26 Rebellion was Suppressed

    Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Feb 29, 1936

    When Chief Aide-de-camp Shigeru Honjō informed him of the revolt, the Emperor immediately ordered that it be put down and referred to the officers as "rebels" (bōto). Shortly thereafter, he ordered Army Minister Yoshiyuki Kawashima to suppress the rebellion within the hour, and he asked reports from Honjō every 30 minutes. The next day, when told by Honjō that little progress was being made by the high command in quashing the rebels, the Emperor told him "I Myself, will lead the Konoe Division and subdue them." The rebellion was suppressed following his orders on 29 February.


  • Wuhan, Hubei, China
    Aug, 1938

    The Emperor authorized the use of Toxic gas in Wuhan invasion

    Wuhan, Hubei, China
    Aug, 1938

    During the invasion of Wuhan, from August to October 1938, the Emperor authorized the use of toxic gas on 375 separate occasions, despite the resolution adopted by the League of Nations on May 14 condemning Japanese use of toxic gas.


  • Berlin, Germany
    Friday Sep 27, 1940

    The Tripartite Pact

    Berlin, Germany
    Friday Sep 27, 1940

    On September 27, 1940, ostensibly under Hirohito's leadership, Japan was a contracting partner of the Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy forming the Axis Powers.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Sep 04, 1941

    The Japanese Cabinet Meeting

    Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Sep 04, 1941

    On September 4, 1941, the Japanese Cabinet met to consider war plans prepared by Imperial General Headquarters.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Friday Sep 05, 1941

    Prime Minister Submitted a draft of the Decision To The Emperor

    Tokyo, Japan
    Friday Sep 05, 1941

    On September 5, Prime Minister Konoe informally submitted a draft of the decision to the Emperor, just one day in advance of the Imperial Conference at which it would be formally implemented.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Oct 16, 1941

    Prime Minister Fumimaro Konoe gave his Resignation

    Tokyo, Japan
    Thursday Oct 16, 1941

    As war preparations continued, Prime Minister Fumimaro Konoe found himself more and more isolated and gave his resignation on October 16.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Sunday Nov 02, 1941

    The review of Eleven points

    Tokyo, Japan
    Sunday Nov 02, 1941

    On November 2 Tōjō, Sugiyama, and Nagano reported to the Emperor that the review of eleven points had been in vain. Emperor Hirohito gave his consent to the war and then asked: "Are you going to provide justification for the war?" The decision for war against the United States was presented for approval to Hirohito by General Tōjō, Naval Minister Admiral Shigetarō Shimada, and Japanese Foreign Minister Shigenori Tōgō.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Nov 03, 1941

    Nagano explained the Plan to the Emperor

    Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Nov 03, 1941

    On November 3, Nagano explained in detail the plan of the attack on Pearl Harbor to the Emperor.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Nov 05, 1941

    Emperor Hirohito approved The Operations Plan

    Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Nov 05, 1941

    On November 5 Emperor Hirohito approved in imperial conference the operations plan for a war against the Occident and had many meetings with the military and Tōjō until the end of the month.


  • Washington D.C., U.S.
    Wednesday Nov 26, 1941

    The Hull note

    Washington D.C., U.S.
    Wednesday Nov 26, 1941

    On November 26, 1941, US Secretary of State Cordell Hull presented the Japanese ambassador with the Hull note, which as one of its conditions demanded the complete withdrawal of all Japanese troops from French Indochina and China. Japanese Prime Minister Tojo Hideki said to his cabinet, "This is an ultimatum".


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Dec 01, 1941

    Imperial Conference Sanctioned The War

    Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Dec 01, 1941

    On December 1 an Imperial Conference sanctioned the "War against the United States, United Kingdom and the Kingdom of the Netherlands."


  • Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, U.S.
    Sunday Dec 07, 1941

    The Attack on Pearl Harbor

    Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, U.S.
    Sunday Dec 07, 1941

    On December 8 (December 7 in Hawaii), 1941, in simultaneous attacks, Japanese forces struck at the Hong Kong Garrison, the US Fleet in Pearl Harbor and in the Philippines, and began the invasion of Malaya.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Jan 13, 1942

    The Emperor pressed Sugiyama four times to launch an Attack on Bataan

    Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Jan 13, 1942

    The Emperor made major interventions in some military operations. For example, he pressed Sugiyama four times, on January 13 and 21 and February 9 and 26, to increase troop strength and launch an attack on Bataan.


  • Midway Atoll
    Thursday Jun 04, 1942

    The Battle of Midway

    Midway Atoll
    Thursday Jun 04, 1942

    In the first six months of war, all the major engagements had been victories. Japanese advances were stopped in the summer of 1942 with the battle of Midway and the landing of the American forces on Guadalcanal and Tulagi in August.


  • Solomon Islands
    Aug, 1942

    The American advance Through The Solomon Islands

    Solomon Islands
    Aug, 1942

    The American Force Landed on Guadalcanal and Tulagi in August.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Sep, 1942

    Emperor Hirohito Signed an Imperial Rescript Condemning To Death American Fliers

    Tokyo, Japan
    Sep, 1942

    The Emperor recognized the potential danger and pushed the navy and the army for greater efforts. In September 1942, Emperor Hirohito signed an Imperial Rescript condemning to death American fliers Lieutenants Dean E. Hallmark and William G. Farrow and Corporal Harold A. Spatz and commuting to life sentences Lieutenants Robert J. Meder, Chase Nielsen, Robert L. Hite and George Barr and Corporal Jacob DeShazer. All had participated in the Doolittle Raid and had been captured.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Sep 11, 1943

    The Emperor Response on The American advance Through The Solomon Islands

    Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Sep 11, 1943

    On September 11 the Emperor ordered Sugiyama to work with the Navy to implement better military preparation and give adequate supply to soldiers fighting in Rabaul.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    1944

    The effect of The U.S. Air Raids on The Cities of Japan

    Tokyo, Japan
    1944

    Throughout the following years from 1943 to 1945, the sequence of drawn and then decisively lost naval and land engagements was reported to the public as a series of great victories. Only gradually did it become apparent to the Japanese people that the situation was very grim due to growing shortages of food, medicine, and fuel as U.S submarines began wiping out Japanese shipping. Starting in mid 1944, U.S. air raids on the cities of Japan made a mockery of the unending tales of victory.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    1945

    Emperor Hirohito began a series of individual meetings to consider the progress of The War

    Tokyo, Japan
    1945

    In early 1945, in the wake of the losses in Battle of Leyte, Emperor Hirohito began a series of individual meetings with senior government officials to consider the progress of the war. All but ex-Prime Minister Fumimaro Konoe advised continuing the war. Konoe feared a communist revolution even more than defeat in war and urged a negotiated surrender.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    1945

    The Cabinet had agreed on a Negotiated Surrender

    Tokyo, Japan
    1945

    By mid-June 1945 the cabinet had agreed to approach the Soviet Union to act as a mediator for a negotiated surrender but not before Japan's bargaining position had been improved by repulse of the anticipated Allied invasion of mainland Japan.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Feb, 1945

    The First Private audience with The Emperor

    Tokyo, Japan
    Feb, 1945

    In February 1945 during the first private audience with the Emperor which he had been allowed in three years, Konoe advised Hirohito to begin negotiations to end the war.


  • Moscow, Russia (then Soviet Union)
    Apr, 1945

    The Soviet Union Issued Notice That it Would not Renew Its Neutrality agreement

    Moscow, Russia (then Soviet Union)
    Apr, 1945

    With each passing week victory became less likely. In April the Soviet Union issued notice that it would not renew its neutrality agreement. Japan's ally Germany surrendered in early May 1945.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Jun, 1945

    The Cabinet decided a Fight to the Last Man

    Tokyo, Japan
    Jun, 1945

    In June the cabinet reassessed the war strategy, only to decide more firmly than ever on a fight to the last man. This strategy was officially affirmed at a brief Imperial Council meeting, at which, as was normal, the Emperor did not speak.


  • Potsdam, Germany
    Thursday Jul 26, 1945

    the Potsdam Declaration

    Potsdam, Germany
    Thursday Jul 26, 1945

    On July 26, 1945, the Allies issued the Potsdam Declaration demanding unconditional surrender. The Japanese government council, the Big Six, considered that option and recommended to the Emperor that it be accepted only if one to four conditions were agreed upon, including a guarantee of the Emperor's continued position in Japanese society. The Emperor decided not to surrender.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Friday Aug 10, 1945

    The Cabinet Drafted an "Imperial Rescript Ending The War"

    Tokyo, Japan
    Friday Aug 10, 1945

    Everything changed after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the Soviet declaration of war. And on August 10, the cabinet drafted an "Imperial Rescript ending the War" following the Emperor's indications that the declaration did not compromise any demand which prejudiced the prerogatives of His Majesty as a Sovereign Ruler.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Sunday Aug 12, 1945

    The Emperor Informed The Imperial Family of His decision To Surrender

    Tokyo, Japan
    Sunday Aug 12, 1945

    On August 12, 1945, the Emperor informed the imperial family of his decision to surrender. One of his uncles, Prince Yasuhiko Asaka, asked whether the war would be continued if the kokutai (national polity) could not be preserved. The Emperor simply replied "Of course."


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Aug 14, 1945

    AcceptIng The Potsdam Declaration

    Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Aug 14, 1945

    On August 14 the Suzuki government notified the Allies that it had accepted the Potsdam Declaration.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Aug 14, 1945

    The Kyūjō Incident

    Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Aug 14, 1945

    A faction of the army opposed to the surrender attempted a coup d'état on the evening of 14 August, prior to the broadcast. They seized the Imperial Palace (the Kyūjō incident), but the physical recording of the emperor's speech was hidden and preserved overnight. The coup was crushed by the next morning, and the speech was broadcast.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Aug 15, 1945

    Broadcast Therecording of The Emperor's Surrender Speech

    Tokyo, Japan
    Wednesday Aug 15, 1945

    On August 15 a recording of the Emperor's surrender speech ("Gyokuon-hōsō", literally "Jewel Voice Broadcast") was broadcast over the radio (the first time the Emperor was heard on the radio by the Japanese people) announcing Japan's acceptance of the Potsdam Declaration. During the historic broadcast the Emperor stated: "Moreover, the enemy has begun to employ a new and most cruel bomb, the power of which to do damage is, indeed, incalculable, taking the toll of many innocent lives. Should we continue to fight, not only would it result in an ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation, but also it would lead to the total extinction of human civilization.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Sep 22, 1987

    The Doctors Discovered that Hirohito had Duodenal Cancer

    Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Sep 22, 1987

    On September 22, 1987, the Emperor underwent surgery on his pancreas after having digestive problems for several months. The doctors discovered that he had duodenal cancer.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Sep 19, 1988

    The Emperor Suffered From Continuous Internal Bleeding

    Tokyo, Japan
    Monday Sep 19, 1988

    The Emperor appeared to be making a full recovery for several months after the surgery. About a year later, however, on September 19, 1988, he collapsed in his palace, and his health worsened over the next several months as he suffered from continuous internal bleeding.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Jan 07, 1989
    07:55:00 AM

    Death

    Tokyo, Japan
    Saturday Jan 07, 1989

    On January 7, 1989, at 7:55 AM, the grand steward of Japan's Imperial Household Agency, Shoichi Fujimori, officially announced the death of Emperor Hirohito at 6:33 AM and revealed details about his cancer for the first time.


  • Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Jan 31, 1989

    Releasing His definitive Posthumous Name Shōwa Tennō

    Tokyo, Japan
    Tuesday Jan 31, 1989

    From January 7 until January 31, the Emperor's formal appellation was "Departed Emperor." His definitive posthumous name, Shōwa Tennō, was determined on January 13 and formally released on January 31 by Toshiki Kaifu, the prime minister.


  • Hachioji, Tokyo, Japan
    Friday Feb 24, 1989

    The Emperor Funeral

    Hachioji, Tokyo, Japan
    Friday Feb 24, 1989

    On February 24, Emperor Hirohito's state funeral was held, and unlike that of his predecessor, it was formal but not conducted in a strictly Shinto manner. A large number of world leaders attended the funeral. Emperor Hirohito is buried in the Musashi Imperial Graveyard in Hachiōji, alongside Emperor Taishō, his father.


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