Emperor Junna

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Emperor of Japan
Crown Prince (親王, Shinnō)
Reign 810–823
Coronation 810
Emperor (天皇, Tennō)
Reign 823–833
Enthronement 30 May 823
Predecessor Saga
Successor Ninmyō
Born c. 785
Died 11 June 840 (age 55)
Heian Kyō(Kyōto)
Burial Ōharano no nishi no minenoe no misasagi (Kyoto)
Empress Princess Shoshi/Masako (810–879)
Full name
Ōtomo (大伴)
Era name and dates
Kōnin, Tenchō: 810–824, 824–834
Father Kanmu
Mother Fujiwara no Tabiko

Emperor Junna (淳和天皇, Junna-tennō, c. 785 – 11 June 840) was the 53rd emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession.[2] Junna reigned from 823 to 833.[3]

Traditional narrative[edit]

Junna had six Empresses and Imperial consorts and 13 Imperial sons and daughters.[4] His personal name (imina) was Ōtomo (大伴).[5]

Junna is traditionally venerated at his tomb; the Imperial Household Agency designates Ōharano no Nishi no Minenoe no Misasagi (大原野西嶺上陵, Ōharano no Nishi no Minenoe Imperial Mausoleum), in Nishikyō-ku, Kyoto, as the location of Junna's mausoleum.[1]

Events of Junna's life[edit]

  • 810: After the rebellion of Emperor Heizei, he became the crown prince of Emperor Saga at 25 years of age.[4]
  • 30 May 823[6] (Kōnin 14, 17th day of the 4th month[7]): In the 14th year of Emperor Saga's reign, he abdicated; the succession (senso) was received by Junna, Saga's younger brother and Emperor Kanmu's third son.[8]
  • 22 March 833 (Tenchō 10, 28th day of the 2nd month[9]): In the 10th year of Emperor Junna's reign, the emperor abdicated; and the succession (senso) was received by his adopted son. Shortly thereafter, Emperor Ninmyo is said to have acceded to the throne. After Junna stepped down from the throne, two former Emperors were alive. In this period, Saga was called the Senior Retired Emperor and Junna was known as the Junior Retired Emperor.[8]
  • 11 June 840 (Jōwa 7, 8th day of the 5th month[10]: Former-Emperor Junna died at the age of 55.[11] Following his death, Fujiwara Yoshifusa maneuvered to have Montoku, rather than the crown prince Tsunesada, put on the throne; Junna's death set the stage for the Fujiwara clan's ascendancy.[12]

Eras of Junna's reign[edit]

The years of Junna's reign are more specifically identified by more than one era name (nengō).[13]


Kugyō (公卿) is a collective term for the very few most powerful men attached to the court of the Emperor of Japan in pre-Meiji eras.[14]

In general, this elite group included only three to four men at a time. These were hereditary courtiers whose experience and background would have brought them to the pinnacle of a life's career. During Junna's reign, this apex of the Daijō-kan included:

  • Sadaijin, Fujiwara no Fuyutsugu (藤原冬嗣), 825–826.[4]
  • Sadaijin, Fujiwara no Otsugu (藤原緒嗣), 832–843.[4]
  • Udaijin, Fujiwara no Otsugu (藤原緒嗣), 825–832.
  • Udaijin, Kiyohara no Natsuno (清原夏野), 832–837.[4]
  • Naidaijin (not appointed)
  • Dainagon, Fujiwara no Otsugu (藤原緒嗣), 821–825.
  • Dainagon, Yoshimine no Yasuyo (良峯安世) (half brother of Emperor Junna), 828–830.
  • Dainagon, Kiyohara no Natsuno (清原夏野), 828–832
  • Dainagon, Fujiwara no Mimori (藤原三守), 829–838

Consorts and children[edit]

Empress: Imperial Princess Shōshi/Masako (正子内親王) (810–879), daughter of Emperor Saga

  • Imperial Prince Tsunesada (恒貞親王) (825–884), the Crown Prince (deposed in 842)
  • Imperial Prince Tsunefusa (恒統親王) (830–842)
  • Imperial Prince Motosada (基貞親王) (?–869)

Hi (Empress as posthumous honors): Imperial Princess Koshi (高志内親王) (789–809), daughter of Emperor Kanmu

  • Imperial Prince Tsuneyo (恒世親王) (806–826)
  • Imperial Princess Ujiko (氏子内親王) (?–885), 16th Saiō in Ise Shrine(823–827)
  • Imperial Princess Yushi (有子内親王) (?–862)
  • Imperial Princess Sadako (貞子内親王) (?–834)

Nyogō: Nagahara no Motohime (永原原姫)

Nyogō: Tachibana no Ujiko (橘氏子), daughter of Tachibana no Nagana

Koui: Fujiwara no Kiyoko (藤原潔子), daughter of Fujiwara no Nagaoka

Court lady: Princess Otsugu (緒継女王) (787–847)

Court lady: Ōnakatomi no Yasuko (大中臣安子), daughter of Ōnakatomi no Fuchiio

  • Imperial Prince Yoshisada (良貞親王) (?–848)

Court lady: Ōno no Takako (大野鷹子), daughter of Ōno no Masao

  • Imperial Princess Hiroko (寛子内親王) (?–869)

Court lady: Tachibana no Funeko (橘船子), daughter of Tachibana no Kiyono

  • Imperial Princess Takaiko (崇子内親王) (?–848)

Court lady: Tajihi no Ikeko (丹犀池子), daughter of Tajihi no Kadonari

  • Imperial Princess Tomoko (同子内親王) (?–860)

Court lady: Kiyohara no Haruko (清原春子), daughter of Kiyohara no Natsuno

  • Imperial Princess Meishi (明子内親王) (?–854)

Unknown lady

  • Mune no Chushi (統忠子) (?–863), removed from the Imperial Family by receiving the family name from Emperor (Shisei Kōka, 賜姓降下) in 862.


Japanese Imperial kamon — a stylized chrysanthemum blossom
  1. ^ a b Emperor Junna, Ōharano no Nishi no Minenoe Imperial Mausoleum, Imperial Household Agency
  2. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial House of Japan, p. 64.
  3. ^ Brown and Ishida, pp.282–283; Varley, H. Paul. (1980). Jinnō Shōtōki, p. 164; Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du Japon, pp. 102–106., p. 102, at Google Books
  4. ^ a b c d e Brown and Ishida, p. 282.
  5. ^ Titsingh, p. 103; Brown and Ishida, p. 282.
  6. ^ Julian dates derived from NengoCalc
  7. ^ 弘仁十四年四月十七日
  8. ^ a b Brown and Ishida, pp. 282–283.
  9. ^ 天長十年二月二十八日
  10. ^ 承和七年五月八日
  11. ^ Brown and Ishida, p. 283; Varely, p. 164.
  12. ^ Mason and Caiger, p. 69
  13. ^ Titsingh, p. 102.
  14. ^ Furugosho: Kugyō of Junna-tennō


See also[edit]

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Emperor Saga
Emperor of Japan:

Succeeded by
Emperor Ninmyō