From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Premodern Japan
Imperial seal of Japan
Part of a series on the politics and
government of Japan during the
Nara and Heian periods

Chancellor / Chief Minister
Minister of the Left Sadaijin
Minister of the Right Udaijin
Minister of the Center Naidaijin
Major Counselor Dainagon
Middle Counselor Chūnagon
Minor Counselor Shōnagon
Eight Ministries
Center Nakatsukasa-shō  
Ceremonial Shikibu-shō
Civil Administration Jibu-shō
Popular Affairs Minbu-shō
War Hyōbu-shō
Justice Gyōbu-shō
Treasury Ōkura-shō
Imperial Household Kunai-shō

The Naidaijin (内大臣, Naidaijin, also pronounced uchi no otodo), literally meaning "Inner Minister", was an ancient office in the Japanese Imperial Court. Its role, rank and authority varied throughout the pre-Meiji period of Japanese history, but in general remained as a significant post under the Taihō Code.[1]


Pre-Meiji period[edit]

The office of Naidaijin predated the Taihō Code of 701. Fujiwara no Kamatari was the first person appointed to the post in 669. After the appointment of Fujiwara no Michitaka in 989, the office became permanently established, ranking just below that of Udaijin ("Right Minister") and Sadaijin ("Left Minister").

Meiji period and after[edit]

The office developed a different character in the Meiji period. In 1885, the title was reconfigured to mean the Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal of Japan in the Imperial Court.[2] In that year, the office of prime minister or chief minister of the initial restoration government was the Daijō-daijin, Sanjō Sanetomi. In December, Sanjō petitioned the emperor to be relieved of his office; and he was then immediately appointed Naidaijin, or Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal.[3]

The office of the Privy Seal was identical with the old Naidaijin only in the sense of the Japanese title—not in terms of function or powers.[4]

The nature of the office further evolved in the Taishō and Shōwa periods. The title was abolished on November 24, 1945.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, p. 425.
  2. ^ Dus, Peter. (1988). The Cambridge History of Japan: The Twentieth Century, pp. 59, 81.
  3. ^ Ozaki, p. 86.
  4. ^ Unterstein (in German): Ranks in Ancient and Meiji Japan (in English and French), pp. 6, 27.
  5. ^ Glossary | Birth of the Constitution of Japan