The Biographical Dictionary of Japan

Kodansha Ltd.

Japan's largest biographical dictionary, covering over 75,000 names. Expanded from printed edition with new entries and updated content.

The country’s largest dictionary of its kind, The Biographical Dictionary of Japan contains over 75,000 people's names, from the nation’s mythic origins, through the eras of Asuka, Nara, Heian, Kamakura, Nanbokucho, Muromachi, Sengoku, Shokuho, and Edo, to the present day, covering those personalities who have left their mark in such fields as politics, law, thought, religion, economics, industry, science, society, education, literature, painting, music, architecture, crafts, entertainment, and sport.
This compilation actively expands beyond the activities and achievements of just a handful of persons in the limelight of history, to shine a light on those who lived alongside and supported those persons—who, while playing a part in that history, were not given their due recognition, such as women; foreign nationals who contributed to Japanese culture and technology, as well as the well-known fictional personalities which feature in our folklore and legends, plays and novels.
The digital Biographical Dictionary of Japan on JapanKnowledge is expanded from the print edition, with additional items including newly certified Living National Treasures and Japan Art Academy Prize recipients, as well as updates of existing entries due to death, change of assignment, or prize award. The contents are current as of October 2015.
General editors: Ueda Masaaki, Nishizawa Jinichi, Hirayama Ikuo, Miura Shumon

Contents information

Original books 日本人名大辞典
Publisher Kodansha Ltd.
Publication date December 6, 2001
Number of volumes One volume
Book price ¥35,200 (Pre-tax price ¥32,000+tax10%)
Release date May 30, 2003
Number of entries 76,000 entries
Number of characters 10,782,000 characters
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(as of October 2015)