Shinano Province (信濃国, Shinano no kuni) or Shinshū (信州) is an old province of Japan that is now Nagano Prefecture.[1]

Map of Japanese provinces (1868) with Shinano Province highlighted.

Shinano bordered on Echigo, Etchū, Hida, Kai, Kōzuke, Mikawa, Mino, Musashi, Suruga, and Tōtōmi Provinces. The ancient capital was located near modern-day Matsumoto, which became an important city of the province.

The World War II–era Japanese aircraft carrier Shinano was named after this old province.[citation needed]

Historical record edit

In 713, the road that traverses Mino and Shinano provinces was widened to accommodate increasing numbers of travelers through the Kiso District of modern Nagano Prefecture.[2]

In the Sengoku period, Shinano Province was often split among fiefs and castle towns developed, including Komoro, Ina, and Ueda. Shinano was one of the major centers of Takeda Shingen's power during his wars with Uesugi Kenshin and others.

Suwa taisha was designated as the chief Shinto shrine (ichinomiya) for the province.[3]

In 1871, during the Meiji period, with the abolition of the han system and the establishment of prefectures (Haihan Chiken) after the Meiji Restoration, Shinano Province's ex-domains/1871 prefectures and ex-shogunate territories/1868 prefectures (mainly Ina [merger of several shogunate demesne administrations with parts of Matsumoto], Okutono, Iwamurada, Komoro, Ueda, Matsushiro, Suzaka, Iiyama, Suwa/Takashima, Takatō, Iida, Matsumoto) and Takayama/Hida which covered Hida Province were administratively merged into Nagano (initially Nakano Prefecture in 1870) and Chikuma prefectures. The seat of the prefectural government of Nakano was Nakano town from Takai District (became Nakano City in 1954), Nagano's prefectural capital was Nagano town in Minochi District (→Nagano City in 1897), and Chikuma's capital was Matsumoto town, Chikuma district (Matsumoto City from 1907). In the second wave of prefectural mergers in 1875/76, Chikuma was split again: the Western part covering Hida Province was merged into Gifu, and the Eastern part in Shinano became part of Nagano. Since that time, Nagano is essentially contiguous to Shinano.

Historical districts edit

Shinano Province consisted of sixteen districts:

See also edit

Notes edit

References edit

  • Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric and Käthe Roth. (2005). Japan encyclopedia. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-01753-5; OCLC 58053128.
  • Hiroaki Sato (2008). Japanese women poets: an anthology. M.E. Sharpe, Inc.
  • Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du Japon (Nihon Ōdai Ichiran). Paris: Royal Asiatic Society, Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland. OCLC 5850691.

External links edit