- era name
- crown prince
- 皇太子（後出 emperor は天皇、Emperor Emeritus は上皇）
- accede to ... Throne
- 皇位を継承する（後出 step ... throne は退位する）
- (be) composed of ～
- chief cabinet secretary
- anthology of Japanese poetry
- 和歌集（後出 poem はここでは歌）
- plum blossom
- 梅の花（後出 plum flower も同意）
- Chinese classics
- date back
- go into effect
- 【写真説明】 bear ～
The government decided on April 1 that the new era name when Crown Prince Naruhito accedes to the Imperial Throne on May 1 will be Reiwa.
The name, selected from among six candidates, is composed of two Chinese characters. The first, "rei," has meanings including "good" and "beautiful." The meanings of the second character, "wa," include "harmony," "peace" and "Japanese style."
Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide announced the same day that the name comes from the "Manyoshu," the oldest anthology of Japanese poetry. The passage of the "Manyoshu" from which the characters were selected is a prologue to poems on plum blossoms.
In a news conference, Prime Minister Abe Shinzo said, "For the first time in history, we have decided on an era name based on Japanese literature," as the sources for the names had thus far been limited to Chinese classics. He added that the "Manyoshu," which dates back more than 1,200 years, contains poems made by people regardless of their standing, and symbolizes Japan's rich national culture and long tradition.
Abe said, "The era name represents a culture being born and nurtured by people's hearts coming together beautifully." He also said that the name "Reiwa" was selected "in the hope that Japan will be a country where each Japanese person can achieve success with hopes for the future like plum flowers that bloom brilliantly after the severe cold."
The new era name will go into effect at exactly 12 a.m., May 1, the day Crown Prince Naruhito will become the new emperor.
Emperor Akihito, who will step down from the throne on April 30, will from then on be referred to as "Emperor Emeritus."
Japanese era names are said to have started in A.D. 645 with the Taika era, and have continued for over 1,300 years since 701, the first year of the Taiho era. Reiwa is Japan's 248th era name.
[本文 - 313 words]