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Japan’s monarchy system is believed to be the oldest continuous hereditary system in which past emperors switch era names mid-reign to mark a fresh start after the difficult times. The country has had more than 250 eras, which started in the 7th century. The name of the era has a predominating effect on the daily lives of people and all the crucial decisions are taken on the basis of the name of the era.

The Heisei era began in Japan on 8th January 1989 when the emperor Akihito, son of the previous emperor Hirohito was crowned as the emperor. After 31 years, the era has come to an end on 30th April 2019. This has happened for the first time in 200 years that any emperor has stepped down in Japan. With this, the new era of Reiwa period, which means” Beautiful harmony” began when Crown Prince Naruhito ascended the throne on 1 May midnight local time.

The Enthronement ceremony which is an ancient ceremony that marks the accession of a new ruler to the Chrysanthemum Throne will take place on 22nd October 2019.

Going back to the year 2016 it was when the emperor expressed concern about continuing his duties owing to his deteriorating health conditions. Owing to that public address a new law was passed to allow his son to be the next emperor. Until then according to the 1889 law the monarch had to reign till their death. This was to avoid any kind of conflicts within the retired emperor and the present ruler. However, the exception was made owing to the heart surgery and treatment for prostate cancer of 85- year old emperor.

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Author- Neha Wadhwa

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