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Provincial map during the time of Tokugawa Ieyasu


The Japanese provinces ( kuni or koku) were geographical areas which were establsihed by the Kokugun System and the Taika Reforms came into being in 645AD.

Initially they comprised of 58 kuni with 3 islands provinces, however by 822AD this had changed to 66 kuni and 2 islands provinces.

These areas existed under the Meiji Restoration and were offically abolished in 1871 and replaced with the current Prefectural System.1 When the Prefectures were established the old provinces were grouped by geographical location into the ‘Five Provinces of Kinai’ and the ‘Seven Circuits.2

During their existence they were lead by Kokushi (Provisional Governors) and Gunji (District Officials).1

Here follows a list of Provinces on our site. This is not yet completely and will continued to be added to over time.

Provinces of the Kinai

Provincial map from 1855.

Tōsandō Circuit

Hokurikudō Circuit

San’indō Circuit

Tōkaidō Circuit

Provincial map from 1871.

Nankaidō Circuit

San’yōdō Circuit

Saikaidaō Circuit

Pre-Taihō Code


1. Kodansha. (1993) ”Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia”. Tokyo: Kodansha Ltd.
2. Louis Frederic, translated by Kathe Roth (2002) “Japan Encyclopedia”. London: Harvard University Press.

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