It’s far and few between the time make topical videos,
that’s primarily because it’s not very often
there’s big important name related news in the world.
There’s often silly name related news that I enjoy sharing on Twitter.
So don’t forget to follow me there @NameExplainYT.
With the plug aside, it seems this week
we’ve have been blessed with some rather big name related news
that being the reveal or the news era in Japan will be called.
Being called the Reiwa era.
This got a lot of people talking
and well with me being eternally doomed to talk about names.
It’s a good time to cover this recent name-based news here on the channel.
So what exactly are these eras of Japan?
Well, a lot of nations break up the history into eras and periods.
Here in the UK, we have things like the Victorian era,
Tudor period and so on.
Though I’m not too sure if these periods are known as that
the time or have retroactively been given those names,
we use these terms to cover time in history as a means to study them.
Putative history bought them certain events and attitudes,
meaning when we want to study those times in history,
using these names makes it easier to grasp the all.
The eras of Japan however seem to be much more formalized.
With the concept of formalizing,
Japanese history being established by Emperor Kotoku.
in 645 AD.
They also known as a Gengo slash Nengo,
since then there have been 239 era names.
So we definitely won’t be covering all these names.
The eras of Japan are used for more than just looking back on their history.
Many Japanese people still use these eras as their calendar system.
when western calendar has become more popular over time.
With some using both calendar systems interchangeably,
many in the country to find themselves by the era they were born and raised in.
In the same way in the West we have terms like Baby Boomers and Millennials.
These era names are also used in other places in Japan, too.
Being seen on official documents, newspapers and coins,
New era names in Japan are introduced along with new emperors.
and this is why we are getting a new era right now.
At the time of writing this video, Japan’s current emperor,
Emperor Akihito is planning on abdicating his throne
on the 1st of May 2019,
ending his 30-year-reign as Emperor of Japan.
And the first emperor to abdicate in over two hundred years of Japanese history.
His eldest son, Naruhito is the current heir apparent,
and he will take the throne when his father abdicates.
With the change of emperor comes a change of era name,
as we have seen being covered in the news recently.
The current Japanese era which is just about to end.
Well, at the time of writing this video, is called the Heisei era
which start from the 8th of January 1989.
All these era names come from classic Chinese texts,
and Heisei is no exception.
The name Heisei means achieving peace,
and comes from passages in two Chinese classics:
The Records of Grand Historian and The Book of Documents.
This name of achieving peace was chosen
due to the turbulent history of the era that preceded it.
The Showa Era which included
war financial crisis and the nation under occupation.
However, as the Heisei era comes to an end,
a new name has been decided on.
What’s interesting is that the new era names are usually
only revealed upon the death of the current Emperor.
But due to Akito abdicating rather than dying,
this means that this tradition has gone out the window
with the name being revealed pleased even abdicated.
Of course this new era name is the Reiwa era.
And it breaks tradition in more ways than
just being revealed before the current Emperor’s out.
As I said, most ever names are from Chinese texts.
How this name of the Reiwa is from Manyoushu
but a compilation of Japanese poetry not from China.
The name was chosen secretly by a panel of experts
ranging from Japanese novelists, professors and business figures.
With the name being officially revealed to the press in the public on April 1st 2019,
the first catch of the name means good/beautiful.
With the second character meaning peace/harmony,
so the name can be translated into English meaning things
类似和平 和谐 善美的事物
like good peace or beautiful harmony.
Current Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that
the name was chosen to affect the start of an era filled with hope
and that the poche compilation in which
the name comes from expresses our nation’s rich culture
which we should take pride in along of our nation’s beautiful nature.
However, despite being just days old at the time of writing,
the name has already faced issues.
Other names were considered too before Reiwa was chosen.
Eiko meaning vast glory.
Banwa meaning perfect harmony.
Banho meaning great security.
广至寓意有好的事情降临 这些名字都曾被考虑过 但最终都被剔除了
And Koshi meaning great arrival, were all in contention but ultimately rejected.
Others in the Japanese public have concerns over the first character of Reiwa
which can also mean command and order.
It’s understandable to see where
the public might be hesitant to be living in an era
that’s name means to be commanded or ordered.
However, the Japanese government have assured the public that
while the kanji character can be read to mean that
in its source material, the character means peace/harmony.
And I’ve stated that nobody in the government thinks like that.
Yet, perhaps most interestingly is the effect that
this era name has had in the most unlikely of places.
In the world of Australian property,
the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia
have stated that since the announcement of this new era name,
they’ve had a vast number of visitors coming to their website.
Why is this?
Well, if you look at the first letters of each part of their name,
you understand why this is the case.
Hence why so many people have been visiting their website
Thank you to all my patrons who support name explained on a monthly basis.
Name explained depends on small monthly donations from fans like you
to help keep the channel running.
Just a small amount of two dollars a month helps out in a huge way.
Grants you patron exclusive name explain extras
and gets your name here with all these awesome people.