The object of this book is to give a bird's-eye view of the history of Japan (Up to the end of the Meiji Era in 1912.), and to indicate in outline how both Old Japan and New Japan were constructed and evolved. It is believed that many persons who would not care to go into the details of Japanese history would like to get an epitome, a general idea, of what has happened during the long course of the history of Japan, Old and New. This book may, therefore, be sufficient for the purposes of that individual known as the "average reader." And, as frequent references are made to fuller accounts, it may also be an introduction to Japanese history for those who desire to pursue the study farther. It should, perhaps, be added that the history of Japan is both interesting and instructive: it is full of the most romantic and exciting incidents and episodes, and it is a study in the evolution of a wonderful people who have astonished the world.