Edo Period


The Edo period refers to the years from 1603 until 1868 when the Tokugawa family ruled Japan. The era is named after the city of Edo, modern-day Tokyo, where the Tokugawa shogunate had its government. It is also sometimes referred to as the early modern period because it was at this time that many of the characteristics of modern Japanese society were formed.

More about: Edo Period


  • 1603 - 1868
    Edo period. The Tokugawa Shogunate rules Japan.
  • Dec 1637 - Apr 1638
    The Shimabara Rebellion in Japan, which the shogunate blames on Christians, leading to an expulsion of all Europeans.
  • 1682
    Ihara Saikaku writes a collection of fictional stories called 'Koshoku ichidai otoko' ('The Man who Loved Love').
  • 1868
    The Meiji Restoration eliminates the position of shogun in Japan, Edo is renamed Tokyo, and Edo Castle becomes the Imperial Palace.