Kōdōkan (Mito)

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Seichō (1841), an Important Cultural Property

The Kōdōkan (弘道館?) was the largest han school in the Edo period. Located in Mito, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan, three of its buildings have been designated Important Cultural Properties and the school is a Special Historic Site.[1]


The Kōdōkan was founded in 1841 by Tokugawa Nariaki, ninth Daimyō of the Mito Domain.[2][3] Admission was at age 15, and the curriculum included medicine, mathematics, astronomy, Confucianism, history, music, and military arts.[4][5] Tokugawa Yoshinobu was confined at the Kōdōkan after abdicating in 1867.[4] The school closed in 1872 after the Meiji Restoration and the introduction of the new school system.[5] In the main building hangs a kakemono inscribed 'Son-jo', an abbreviation of the contemporary slogan Sonnō jōi, 'Revere the Emperor, expel the foreigners'.[4] The Kōdōkan was damaged in the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami.[6]


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Coordinates: 36°22′31″N 140°28′37″E / 36.37528°N 140.47694°E / 36.37528; 140.47694