Sons of Heaven

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The Japanese monarchy is the oldest and most mystery-enshrouded in existence, and this social history of it, the first comprehensive modern one to be published, is engrossing. Writing in a style at once scholarly and entertaining, Packard (Peter's Kingdom: Inside the Papal City) traces the monarchy from its legendary origins 2000 years ago to the early emperors who wielded temporal as well as spiritual power, and from the puppet emperors under the shoguns, to the Emperor Meiji who, with momentous consequences, hauled the nation into the 20th century. We're shown his grandson Hirohito124th direct descendant of the Sun Goddess, a virtual puppet himself at the time of World War II, but now an internationally respected marine biologist who, though shorn of his divinity, is his people's most revered living link to the past. Packard provides a mass of interesting information about the austerities, rituals and daily routine of a Japanese monarch's life. Photos. (November 30)
Library Journal
The religious and political roles of the emperors of Japan, from historic origins to the present day, is presented in fascinating and sympathetic detail in this semipopular work. Packard has previously written on the British monarchy ( The Queen and Her Court) and the Vatican (Peter's Kingdom) , and he provides similar kinds of information here, e . g., on the functioning of the imperial household, court life, etc. Packard deftly combines a historical narrative with a depiction of the evolving imperial institution in a book that general readers and specialists will find accessible and interesting. Evelyn S. Rawski, Univ. of Pittsburgh
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780020232810
  • Publisher: Macmillan Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 7/1/1989
  • Edition description: 1st Collier Books ed
  • Pages: 416

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