Comparisons and Differences Between the Emperors, Shoguns, Daimyo, and Samurai

Topics: Shogun, Japan, Feudalism Pages: 1 (389 words) Published: August 18, 2012
The comparison between the emperors and the shoguns is that a shogun is literally, "a commander of a force" was one of the (usually) hereditary military dictators of Japan from 1192 to 1867. In this period, the shogun, were rulers of Japan though they were nominally appointed by the emperor. When Portuguese explorers first came into contact with the Japanese they described Japanese conditions in analogy, likening the emperor, with great symbolic authority but little political power, to the pope, and the shogun to secular European rulers, e.g. the Holy Roman emperor. The Emperor of Japan is, according to the Constitution of Japan, "the symbol of the state and of the unity of the people", with functions as head of state.

The differences between the emperors and the shoguns is emperors have reigned over Japan for more than 1,500 years, and that they have all descended from the same imperial family, and are thought to be very powerful. A Japanese shogun is a person of military rank and historical title for in most cases hereditary military dictator of Japan. It may look like an emperor has more power but in fact a shogun has more power. The emperor was just a figurehead ruling position. The shogun definitely had more power than the emperor.

The comparison between the Daimyo and the Samurai a Daimyo was a Japanese feudal lord in charge of a fief or region, in much the same way a European Lord was the local governor of a region. Due to the political instability of feudal Japan, a Daimyo may well have been trained as a Samurai from birth. A Samurai, or even a family of Samurai, were often retainers to a Daimyo and frequently maintained that relationship for generations. This relationship might only be broken by the death or dishonoring of one or the other. The Daimyo owed his allegiance to the Shogun, the Samurai owed his allegiance to the Daimyo. In that way, loyalties were usually maintained. In times of war, the Samurai classes were the Officers of the army. In...
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