Living National Treasure

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Living National Treasure or Living Human Treasure is a title awarded in several countries, and denotes a person or a group which is regarded as a national treasure while still alive.


In 1950, the Government of Japan began to designate certain individuals or groups who embodied intangible national cultural values as living human treasures, just as places or things of great cultural value are designated as national treasures, thus becoming eligible for special protection and support.[1] Some of the ancient protected crafts are pottery, music, handmade paper, dolls, and swordmaking. Several countries have followed suit with their own official programmes of recognition for intangible cultural values and the people who embody them, including Australia, France, Philippines, Romania, South Korea and Thailand. In Korea, the term Intangible National Treasure is used.

UNESCO has set forth guidelines for supporting such national living human treasure programmes.

Countries culture[edit]

Examples of systems:


  1. ^ "Treasures of Japan – Its Living Artists". May 30, 1999. Retrieved February 5, 2011.