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Japanese Imperial year facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts

Japanese Imperial year (皇紀, kōki) or "National calendar year" is a unique calendar system in Japan. It is based on the legendary founding of Japan by Emperor Jimmu in 660 BC.

Kōki emphasizes the long history of Japan and the Imperial dynasty.


The Summer Olympics and Tokyo Expo were planned as anniversary events in 1940 (Kōki 2600); but the international games were not held because of the Second Sino-Japanese War.

The Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) and Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) used the Kōki system for identification. For example,

  • The IJA's Type 92 battalion gun was called "ninety-two" because its design was completed in 1932; and the 2592nd year since the first Emperor of Japan was 1932 (Kōki 2592).
  • The Mitsubishi A6M Zero was called the "Zero" because it entered service in 1940 (Kōki 2600).

In Japan today, the system of counting years from the reign of Emperor Jimmu has been abandoned.

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Japanese Imperial year Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.