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been inade in this direction when the the transformed circumstances had change came. The cultivators and thrust vpon him as Ruler, a dire fate craftsmen worked without the aid of would befall the land. Realizing this, power-driven machinery, and em- he did not hesitate to give up treadployed the most primitive implements ing in the primrose path of dalliance and methods. Below them was a class pursued by his predecessors. He reof people known as the cta, very much moved his court from the tainted atlike the "untouchables" of modern niosphere of the ancient
capital, India, who were despised like lepers Kyoto, which, for over two centuries, by their social betters. Such a state had been associated with the imof affairs promoted jealousies and dis- potence of the monarch, to the freer cord amongst the ruling class, gave an environment of Tokyo, which had exaggerated opinion of their im- served as the governmental seat of portance to the military men, and kept the Shogunate and which, during the them from following any useful oc- later years of that régime, had be cupation; while it subjected the real come the centre of eign influence, producers of wealth to the injustice where, unhampered by past Court preof being compelled to bear the whole cedents, the foundations of the new burden of taxation on their shoulders, administration could be laid. He also made it impossible for them to ac- received the diplomatic corps, thereby quire the ability to defend their own shattering the tradition which held rights, and, by crushing their spirit, his person too sacred to be gazed upon condemned them to continue to be by others than his immediate relations beasts of burden, without any ambi- and the nobles. Similarly, the powertion to improve their condition by ful feudal barons, alive to the danger using better methods and implements that threatened them without, conin their farm work and trades. This quiered their inordinate pride, cast disunited, inefficient organization was aside their petty, personal jealousies, wofully ill-prepared to stem the tide and, of their own free will, laid their of Occidental aggression which had fiefs at the feet of their Emperor and already submerged an important part begged him to reorganize the Empire. of Asia, and was at that time lapping Taking advantage of the patriotic against the shores of Japan.
offers of the barons, all but seventeen Happily for Dai Nippon, the exi- of whom had joined in petitioning the gencies of the times roused a spirit of sovereign, the feudalistic basis of patriotism in the ruling classes which, government was gradually demolished. until then, had remained an unknown At first the lords were set up as prosource of strength, and which
vincial governors, and charged with destined to regenerate the nation in the collection of the taxes, as of old, course of time, and render it secure which they remitted to the Treasury against alien machinations. The Em- minus one-tenth, allotted to them for peror, though a mere lad (or, if you themselves and their retainers. On insist upon it, those who advised him
August 29, 1871, this system and acted in his name at that time), changed by the eviction of the barons perceived that a revolutionary change from their gubernatorial positions and was needed in Imperial life, and that by ordering that the taxes be paid unless he discharged the duties which directly to the Imperial Treasury, the
: According to Captain Brinkley, the peers being allowed to enjoy their oneaverage rate of taxation during the Shogunate was not less than
tenth tithe of the imposts and asked cent of the gross produce, and fell al
to live in Tokyo. The administration together upon the lower classes.
was organized into a bureaucracy by clan, made an insult offered to the departmentalizing the governmental nation by Korea a pretext to stir up activities after the European fashion, all those who, lacking patriotism and with this exception, that the heads of far-sight, had resented the innovations the various bureaus were not responsi- that had been introduced, and emble to a popularly elected assembly, broiled the country in
a civil but directly to the Emperor, who ap- The forces of order and progress were pointed them, and could dismiss ranged on the Emperor's side, and punish them. As was natural, the these, within six months, subdued the higher offices were filled with the insurrection. The rebellion, however, barons and nobles who had been in- cost the lives of 30,000 men on both strumental in the restoration of the sides. But finally when the Imperial Emperor's power; and this arrange forces, whose ranks included the sons ment was destined to continue for of peasants and artisans, vanquished many years.
the samurai, the ascendancy of the Quite early in the Meiji era the barons and their henchmen was shatGovernment took in hand the matter tered, and the foundation on which of settling the status of the samurai, the feudalistic structure had rested offering to commute their pensions on was destroyed. The feudal barons the basis of four years' purchase for (daimyo) and the court nobles (kuge) a life pension, and six years' pur- were shorn of their titles, and both chase for a hereditary stipend. In were amalgamated into a class styled 1872, when the war department was kwazoku (later partitioned into four bifurcated into the Army and Navy subdivisions), as distinguished from Bureaus, these retainers were re- the commoners,
who were called lieved of their obligation to serve in heimin. Simultaneously with this, the the force, and the conscript system pariabs (eta) were socially uplifted was introduced, requiring every male, and their disabilities removed. The irrespective of his class or rank, capa- Buddhist Church was deprived of the ble of bearing arms, to render military distinction of being the State religion, service. The men belonging to the old and freedom of conscience was granted warrior caste naturally resented drill- to all. ing beside those whom they had While these socio-administrative always despised as their social in- changes were being inaugurated, the feriors: and the conservatives openly authorities were busy opening up indoubted the wisdom of admitting in- ternal and external means of comto the army men who lacked heredi- munication, developing agriculture tary skill. But the Government went and home crafts, installing improved ahead, firm in the faith that in the end machinery to ply industries and work all difficulties would disappear, and mines, laying out forests, establishing the policy would justify itself by its an efficient army, navy, police, and results. An edict issued in 1876 made judiciary, codifying laws, building it compulsory for the feudal retainers prisons and systematizing their ad. to commute their pensions; while an- ministration, organizing medical, saniother forbade them to
two tary, and educational systems, and, in swords, which theretofore had been the wake of literacy, decentralizing their birthright.
the Government by the institution of So far this reconstruction had pro- local boards, municipalities, and repceeded in peace, but in 1877 Saigo resentative bodies. In other words, Takamori, a leader of the Satsuma the task that the Japanese Govern
ment set before itself at the com. off from the rest of the world, one mencement of the Meiji era was not cannot forbear marvelling at the promerely the performing of the functions gressiveness and longsightedness of of protecting life and property, open
its authors. ing up communications and keeping From what I have been privileged them in an efficient condition, and edu- to learn from some of those Japanese cating the rising generation, to which statesmen who assisted in the framing most administrations limit themselves, of this programme, I gather that it but in addition it undertook to mod- was laid down that Japan was to ernize industry and finance, and revo ruthlessly pluck out of her social lutionize the structure of society, and economy every institution that hamespecially feminine conditions. Since pered the nation's progress, but, at the at that time the Government consisted same time, she was to preserve and of a coterie of a few statesmen, the develop all that was good and useful descendants
feudal clansmen in her old civilization. Nothing was (known as geniro, or "elder states- to be taken from the West that the men"), it meant that the face of their nation could not assimilate. The task country was to be literally and not was not to be regarded as finished unmereiy figuratively changed at their less and until the foreign institutions will and by them. Never did another had actually become engrafted upon oligarchy voluntarily assume such a the Japanese systems so that they stupendous task. Fifty years ago, lived and thrived, and gradually the when the most progressive govern- graft and parent tree became one and ments in Europe hesitated to under- indivisible. Japan's ideal was not take anything worthy of notice beyond merely to be an imitator of America the orthodox functions of adminis- and Europe, but to so make Western tration, it needed a great deal of knowledge her own that the natives courage for Japan to shoulder this would be able to improve upon that great responsibility.
which had been acquired to meet their This ambition was materialized by own requirements. utilizing the knowledge gained by a But as is inevitable in such cases, few Japanese from their limited con- the Nipponese were at first not able tact with Westerners; employing rigidly to adhere to this splendid competent foreigners to help to initi- course of action. Stepping out from ate reforms, introduce American and the shadows of their ages-old excluEuropean machinery and methods, and siveness into the mid-day sunshine of instruct the Nipponese in the liberal Western civilization, their eyes were arts and sciences, professions and so blinded by the glare that they could trades; and by sending promising scarcely see anything wrong in foryoung men and (mark you) women to eign institutions, or anything right in the United States of America and their own; and many of them replaced several European countries to observe their former habits and customs with how the Occidental nations lived and foreign ones by wholesale. This inworked, study their civilizations, im- discrimination inspired by excessive bibe their spirit, learn their methods, zeal led them to commit many misand master the use of their machinery takes, probably the greatest amongst and tools. Bearing in mind the fact them being the crushing out of the that within a few years of the time national system of local government. when this policy was framed Japan Their eagerness to make rapid progress had lived in strict isolation, screened also sometimes caused them to sacri.
fice quality, and infringe upon the tended its handicrafts and established patent rights of foreigners. During gigantic power industries. Amongst the years of transition some of them the latter, that of shipbuilding has behaved towards the alien traders in had probably the most marvellous a manner calculated to lay them open career. At the beginning of the Meiji to the charge of lacking commercial era little was attempted except the morality. But the wide awake amongst building of wooden junks. But since them have already realized these de then, and especially since the passing fects, deplored them, and sought to of the Shipbuilding Encouragement get rid of them. The Nipponese have Act in 1896, Government and private been able, during the latter years of yards have been established where their development, almost completely Dreadnoughts, protected and unproto overcome these undesirable ten- tected cruisers, torpedo boats, destroydencies, and as a result their recent ers, submarines, and merchant vessels advancement has been better ordered, constructed, and where more even, deeper, and more ab ling.
plate and the heaviest and latest pat
tern of guns and machinery are manuIV.
factured. The biggest of them all is What are the results of the activi- the Yokosuko yard, covering 116 acres, ties set into motion by the impact of with a graving dock large enough to the Occident upon Japan? A broad, accommodate any ship afloat, and two general outline of the changes effected big building slips, besides three during the four and a half decades smaller ones. The Kuré yard has to that have passed since the Meiji era its credit the feat of building and began may be given.
launching armored vessel, the The face of the three principal Ibuki, six months after the keel was islands, namely Hokkaido (30,275 laid. This yard can construct guns square miles), Honshiu (86,770 square and mountings of the largest type, miles), and Shikoku (7,032 square and can turn out all the armor plate miles), which constitute Japan proper, to meet the needs of the
navy for and, roughly speaking, at present pos- many years to came. sess a population of about 55,000,000 Equally remarkable progress has souls, has been changed by a network been made in the manufacture of of elaborate, costly, and efficient weapons. The arsenal at Tokyo makes
of communication of which a speciality of rifles and their ammuany nation may justly be proud. Be- nition. Ordnance is constructed at ginning with actually nothing, or next the Osaka Arsenal, and powder is to nothing, Japan has established rail- made at four explosives factories. A ways, tramways, wire and wireless private explosives factory covers 300 telegraphs, sea cables, telephones, and acres, and manufactures 300 tons of post offices; improved the existing explosives daily. The invention of the roads and bridges, developed harbors Murata infantry rifle and the Arisaka and a merchant marine and made quick-firing gun, and the ability to navigation safe in the Japanese manufacture 12-inch
guns, renders waters, to such purpose that the Japan practically independent of forends of government, industries, trade eign supplies of this character, while and commerce and private communi- a £1,000,000 foundry makes it possible cation are adequately and efficiently to produce at home practically all the served.
iron and steel needed for building and Japan has greatly improved and ex- equipping ships of all kinds.
To insure her interests against for- ships building and built of Dreadeign encroachment and internal dis- nought or super-Dreadnought armaorder, Japan has reorganized her army ment, she ranked fourth in 1912. She according to the Western pattern, and is, to-day, the only power possessing established a navy and constabulary, a Dreadnought in the Pacific, and both also after the Occidental model. this gives her a position of supremacy The army and navy were, during the so far as those waters are concerned. Veijï era, called to action in the Chino- Besides this formidable fleet ready for Japanese War of 1894; in the Boxer action, she has two battleships, four Uprising of 1900; and the Russo- battle cruisers, two second-class proJapanese War of the past decade (in tected cruisers, two torpedo-boat addition to which the soldiery sup- destroyers, and three submarines in pressed the Satsuma Rebellion, to course of construction, and is strainwhich reference has been made). ing her finances to be the mistress of Though of late some attempt has been the Eastern seas as England is sumade to belittle the achievement of
preme in Western waters, having the Japanese fighting forces during the spent the better part of the £35,000,000 conflict with Russia, yet all fair- sanctioned at the end of the Russominded critics admit that they demon- Japanese war for building new ships, strated their prowess in a remarkable repairing old vessels, and those capmanner, and proved that the Nip- tured from Russia, the whole of ponese can successfully fight the Oc- which sum will be exhausted by 1917. cidentals with their own weapons. In The Japanese, in learning from the 1862 the army consisted of 13,625 West how to butcher soldiers and officers and men. In 1894, Japan was sailors, have not neglected to adopt able to send an
army of 240,000 from the same source the system of trained men, 6,495 irregulars, and Red Cross relief. Indeed, that work 100,000 coolies to fight China. In has enlisted the interest of the Nip1911-12 she had a war establishment ponese from the Dowager Empress of 1,650,000 and a peace establishment down to the mistress of the meanest of 225,000, all recruited by conscrip- cottage. The organization is tion,
completed, and the Japanese Red At present Japan's navy consists Cross has been recognized by sister of sixteen hattleships, including two movements in Europe and America. of the Dreadnought type; thirteen The campaigns in which Japan has armored cruisers; two first class, engaged (or their aftermath) have retwelve second class, and five third sulted in extending the Mikado's Emclass protected cruisers; four unpro- pire by the acquirement (permanent tected cruisers; three torpedo vessels; or temporary) of Karafuto or Japanese fifty-seven torpedo-boat destroyers; Saghalien (13,000 square miles in fifty-seven torpedo boats; and twelve area and with a population of 26,000); submarines. In 1913 she stands fifth Formosa (with an
of 13,500 in respect of battleships, having out- square miles and a population of stripped Russia and Italy in this re- about 3,500,000); Corea (71,000 square spect. As regards “Dreadnoughts and miles in extent and with 12,000,000 ships launched since 1906 which may inhabitants); a part of Manchuria; be considered fit to 'lie in line,'”
and the Kwantung Peninsula (coverclassified by the Naval Annual in 1910, ing 200 square miles, with 400,000 she ranked fifth, and was ahead of population). Space forbids reference Austria and Italy. In the matter of to the changes inaugurated by the Jap