14 Facts About Meiji Constitution


The immediate consequence of the Meiji Constitution was the opening of the first Parliamentary government in Asia.

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Meiji Constitution established clear limits on the power of the executive branch and the Emperor.

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The leaders of the government and the political parties were left with the task of interpretation as to whether the Meiji Constitution could be used to justify authoritarian or liberal-democratic rule.

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Meiji Constitution was used as a model for the 1931 Constitution of Ethiopia by the Ethiopian intellectual Tekle Hawariat Tekle Mariyam.

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The conservative Meiji Constitution oligarchy viewed anything resembling democracy or republicanism with suspicion and trepidation, and favored a gradualist approach.

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Meiji Constitution rejected some notions as unfit for Japan, as they stemmed from European constitutional practice and Christianity.

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Meiji Constitution therefore added references to the kokutai or "national polity" as the justification of the emperor's authority through his divine descent and the unbroken line of emperors, and the unique relationship between subject and sovereign.

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The Meiji Constitution was drafted in secret by the committee, without public debate.

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Unlike its modern successor, the Meiji Constitution was founded on the principle that sovereignty resided in person of the Emperor, by virtue of his divine ancestry "unbroken for ages eternal", rather than in the people.

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Separate provisions of the Meiji Constitution are contradictory as to whether the Meiji Constitution or the Emperor is supreme.

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The Meiji Constitution provided for a cabinet consisting of Ministers of State who answered to the Emperor rather than the Diet, and to the establishment of the Privy Council.

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Not mentioned in the Meiji Constitution were the genro, an inner circle of advisors to the Emperor, who wielded considerable influence.

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The present constitution is legally reckoned as an amendment to the Meiji Constitution; this was done to preserve legal continuity even though it is a completely new document.

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Indeed, the 1947 Meiji Constitution was authorized by the Emperor, which is in apparent conflict of the 1947 Meiji Constitution, according to which that constitution was made and authorized by the nation .

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