Crown Prince Naruhito

Crown Prince Naruhito - Japan News

When Crown Prince Naruhito on Wednesday becomes, by official Japanese count, the 126th person to occupy the Chrysanthemum Throne since 660 B.C., he will be ceremonially armed with the glittering, ancient imperial regalia of sword and jewel.

Beyond the material trappings that accompany what the Japanese claim to be the world's oldest continuous hereditary monarchy, however, the new emperor will also receive a much more important, though less dazzling, inheritance: The deep and abiding respect his father — Akihito, who was abdicating as emperor on Tuesday — has accumulated over his three-decade reign.

Replicating this bequest on his own will be Naruhito's greatest challenge.

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