Japan Society E-Library

Biographical Portraits Volume VIII

Edited by:Cortazzi, Hugh

Publisher:Global Oriental

First published:2013

This edition:2013



This book forms part of a series recording the lives of men, women and institutions who have played a significant role in the development of UK-Japan relations. The current volume, which contains 52 ‘portraits’, contributes further to the Japan Society’s collection of individual memoirs. When read together these give a many-faceted picture of modern history, shedding light on controversial issues, illuminating past successes and failures, and providing a valuable point of reference for researchers and historians.

Structured thematically in seven parts – Politicians and Officials; Lawyers; Artists, Art Collectors and Art Dealers; Potters and Garden Designers; Writers; Music, Sport, Film and Media; Scholars and Other Notable Individuals – the highlights in this volume include ‘Major-General F.S.G. Piggott (1883-1966)’, 'A.B. Mitford (1837-1916)', 'William Donald Patrick at the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, 1946-48', 'Tomimoto Kenkichi (1886-1963)', 'Handa Taki (1871-1956)', 'Virginia Woolf (1892-1941)', 'Beatrix Potter (1866-1943) in Japan', 'Benjamin Britten (1913-1976)', 'Mary Helena Cornwall Legh (1857-1941)', and 'Field Marshal Sir Francis W. Festing (1912-1976)'.

Read Now


Part IV: Potters and Garden Designers

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh

Hugh Cortazzi's Introduction to Biographical Portraits Volume VIII.

Author: Cobbing, Andrew

Iwakura Tomomi's (1825-83) tremendous energy and revolutionary zeal made him a central figure in the Meiji regime. This essay recounts his role in bringing about the Meiji period and subsequent task of presenting the state to the outside world, including as Ambassador to the UK.

Author: Oyama, Mizuo, and Sebastian Dobson

This portait presents the life and military career of Pan-Asianist Utsunomiya Taro (1861-1922), particularly his time in Britain as Japan's military attaché and role during the Russo-Japanese War.

Author: Nish, Ian

Makino Shinken (1861-1949) was a distinguished diplomat and a man whom Britain thought could be trusted in foreign affairs between their two nations. Although he only served briefly in the UK, during his time as a delegate to the Paris Peace Conference he was much involved with British statesmen and British thinking.

Author: Stockwin, Arthur

This portrait presents the long political career of staunch internationalist Miyazawa Kiichi (1919-2007), who served in the National Diet from 1953 to 2003, and was appointed Prime Minister in 1991. This essay considers his brand of politics in relation to that prevailing in British politics at the time.

Author: Otte, Thomas G.

Lord Salisbury (1830-1903) dominated British foreign policy for the better part of a quarter of a century at the close of the Victorian era, serving four times as Foreign Secretary and thrice Prime Minister. This essay sketches his attitudes towards Japan and analyses the emergence of Japan as a major power in the evolution of Anglo-Japanese relations.

Author: Nish, Ian

Edward Grey's (1862-1933) served as Foreign Secretary for a decade, setting a record for length of service. Through looking at his writings and minutes, the impressions of his closest officials and the impressions of Japanese diplomats, this essay uncovers the thinking which shaped his policy-making. 

Author: Dobson, Sebastian

The death of Everard Calthrop (1876-1915) on the Western Front on 19 December 1915 cut short a career which had already done much to increase mutual awareness between the British and Japanese armies since 1902. This essay charts the human impact of the First World War on Anglo-Japanese reltions.

Author: Best, Antony

This essay details the miltary and diplomatic career of Major-General F.S.G. Piggott (1883-1966), whose efforts to secure peace and improve relations between Japan and Britain were fatally clouded by an uncritical love for Japan. Following the Pacific War he devoted his life to the restoration of Anglo-Japanese friendship.

Author: Morton, Robert

A.B. Mitford (1837-1916) led a long, adventurous, and well-connected life. This essay recounts how his time in Japan under Sir Harry Parkes coloured the rest of his life.

Author: Hoare, James Edward

This portait gives an account of the activities of the Japan Consular Service outside of Japan in Korea, Taiwan, and Manchuria (then parts of the Japanese Empire), and how they paved the way for the 1943 Eden reforms which ended the distinction between the British diplomatic and consular services.

Author: Roberts, Christopher

The Ansei treaties which followed the 'opening' of Japan in 1859 provided for extra-territorial rights, by which the accused of any treaty power were dealt with by that coutry's own courts. This portrait details the activities of the consular courts from 1859-99.

Author: Roberts, Christopher

Sir Hiram Shaw Wilkinson (1840-1926) was one of the leading personalities in the British extra-territorial regime in Japan. He was a member of the Japan Consular Service, an independent practising barrister and the last Judge of Her Britannic Majesty's Court for Japan.

Author: Trotter, Ann

This essay details the role of William Patrick - Britain's appointed judge - in the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, 1946-48, along with the problems faced by the Tribunal.

Author: Ashmore, Sonia

Mortimer Menpes (1835-1938) was fully immersed in fin de siècle Japonisme and travelled to Japan twice. This portrait examines the influence of Japan on his artistic career.

Author: Huberman, Toni

This portrait details the life of artist, traveller and illustrator Walter Tyndale (1855-1943), including his 1909 visit to Japan.

Author: Ono, Ayako

George Henry (1854-1934) and E.A. Hornel (1864-1933) developed a deep appreciation for Japanese art and were heavily involved in its promotion within European artistic circles. This portrait provides an account of their careers within the context of Scotland's involvement in the modernisation of Japan.

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh

Portrait painter Hara Bushō (1866-1912) spent three years studying art in London where he became involved with other important Japanese artists and immersed himself in Western art. This portait provides an account of his artistic career and time in Lodnon.

Author: Horner, Libby

At a time when many European artists were wholeheartedly embracing Japanese art Kurihara Chuji (1886-1936) did the opposite and began studying Western-style painting. This essay details his use of Western artistic conventions within his own artistic career in Japan.

Author: Koyama Noboru

This portrait provides an account of the life of Ernest Hart (1835-1898), an ophthalmic surgeon, medical journalist, and avid connoisseur of Japanese art.

Author: Bincsik, Monika

This essay analyses and details the significance and extent of the Sutherland collection of Japanese lacquer art.

Author: Monden, Sonoko

Although Yamanaka and Company, run by Yamanaka Sadajirō (1866-1936), was only active in London for half a century, it served as a bridge between Japan and British communities, and contributed to the collecting and study of Japanese art in Britan.

Author: Horner, Libby

Matsukata Kōjirō (1865-1950) was a successful and innovative industrialist, but this portrait details his time in London, his career as an art collector and the establishment of the first museum of Western art in Japan.

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh

Tomimoto Kenkichi (1886-1963) was one of Japan's leading artists of the twentieth century. This portrait examines both his skill with ceramics and friendship with the great British potter Bernard Leach.

Author: Maezaki Shinya

This portrait provides an account of the exchange of skills in the world of ceramics and pottery between Japan and Britain through Matsubayashi Tsurunosuke (1894-1932) and his visit to Britain from 1922-1924, as well as his wider introduction of Japanese culture to Britain.

Author: Watanabe Toshio

This essay details Josiah Conder's (1852-1920) life as the first advocate for the building of Japanese gardens in Britain, and his theory of Japanese garden design.

Author: Kajihara-Nolan, Yuka; Jason Nolan; and Jill Raggett

Handa Taki (1871-1956) had a career as a gardener that was varied and international. This portrait details her life and dealings with gardening and gardens in Britain.

Author: Koyama Noburu

Elizabeth Gordon (1851-1925) contributed towards a better understanding of Japanese and Western religious culture. This essay details her life and studies of Buddhism both in Britain and Japan.

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh

This portrait details how Douglas Sladen's (1856-1947) writings did much to popularize Japan among British readers in the early years of the twentieth century.

Author: Burleigh, David

This essay considers James Kirkup's (1918-2009) poetical encounter with Japan, in particular his fifty-year engagement with haiku.

Author: Kubota Noriko

This essay makes the case for the influence of Japonisme in the writing career of Virginia Woolf (1892-1941).

Author: Wallace, George

This essay charts the success and popularity of Beatrix Potter's (1866-1943) Peter Rabbit children's books in Japan, detailing their reception and translation.

Author: Norimasa Morita

Yone Noguchi (1875-1947) was the first Japanese-born writer to publish poetry in English, and had links with many famous English literary figures. This portrait charts his poetic career including his visits to the USA and London.

Author: James, Jason

The composer Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) was only in Japan for twelve days, in 1956, but his exposure to Japanese culture had a powerful impact on his music, resulting in his opera Curlew River.

Author: Itoh Keiko

This essay puts the introduction of tennis to Japan in the context of British colonialism and Japanese modernisation.

Author: Kochi Jun

This portait charts the role of F.W. Strange (d.1889) in the growth and promotion of rowing within Japan.

Author: Norimasa Morita

This essay details David Lean's interactions with Japan as a filmmaker through his two film projects The Wind Cannot Read and The Bridge on the River Kwai.

Author: Best, Antony

Although G.E. Morrison (1862-1920) never visited Japan or spoke Japanese, his journalistic efforts had a great impact on British public opinion over the relationship with Japan. This essay assesses his career and influence.

Author: Chong, Chin-Sok

This portrait outlines the journalistic career of Ernest Thomas Bethell (1872-1909) in Korea as an opponent of Japan's foreign policy in Asia.

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh

This essay uses the tragic death of Melville James Cox (1885-1940) in Tokyo to assess the misconduct of the Kempeitai in arresting British citizens during the Second World War.

Author: McFarlane, Deborah

This portrait details the controversial career of the journalist George Gorman (1888-1956) as a propagandist during the inter-war years and beyond, and his complicated and contradictory relationship with both sides of the conflict.

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh

Charles Dunn (1915-1995) was one of the scholars responsible for the expansion of Japanese studies after the Second World War. This essay details his career as a scholar and dealings with the Japanese language.

Author: Purvis, Phillida

This portrait details the scholarly career of P.G. O'Neill (1924-2012), his study of the Japanese language, Japanese festivals and Nō theatre.

Author: Daniels, Gordon

Charles Alfred Fisher (1916-82) was an ex-prisoner of war, who played a significant, if forgotten role, in the rise of Japanese Studies.

Author: Nish, Ian

This essay recounts the scholarly career of Peter Lowe (1941-2012) in the field of Japanese history as it relates to Anglo-Japanese relations.

Author: Snowden, Paul

The Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary had its origins as a pioneer project by British English teachers in Japan. This portrait considers the Japan career of its first editor A.S. Hornby (1898-1978) and his significant contribution to language learning.

Author: Saitō Eiri

Ōtsuka Hisao (1907-1996) was a pioneering scholar of Western economic and political history and a celebrated intellectual in post-war Japan.

Author: Yamanouchi Hisaaki

Saitō Takeshi (1887-1982) contributed significantly to the development of English Studies in Japan, as well as inspiring the field of 'British [Cultural] Studies', and this portrait outlines his impact on academia in Japan.

Author: Nakamura Shigeru

This portrait traces the missionary career of Mary Legh (1857-1941), who came to Japan at the age of fifty to aid sufferers of leprosy.

Author: Itoh Keiko

Eikichi and Rosa Itoh carved out a niche in Anglo-Japanese relations that spanned the twentieth century. This portrait details their career and dealings with Britain.

Author: Hoashi Kōji

This portrait charts the career of Ron Duckenfield (1917-2010) throughout the Second World War, as a fighter pilot and as a prisoner-of-war under the Japanese, and subsequently as air attaché to the British Embassy in Tokyo.

Author: Shaigiya-Abdelsamad, Yahya

This essay details the military career of Francis Festing (1912-76), along with his hobby as a connoisseur of Japanese swords and acts of reconcilliation.

Author: Dobson, Sebastian

This portrait outlines John Mathews James' (1838-1908) involvement in the modernisation of the Japanese Navy, along with his impact on the toponymy of Tokyo.

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh

This essay discusses The Times' coverage of events in Japan during the nineteenth century.

Author: Cortazzi, Hugh
Author: Cortazzi, Hugh