Kojiruien (Dictionary of Historical Terms) (古事類苑)

Kojiruien is a kind of encyclopedia compiled and edited in the Meiji period of Japan, providing many references published by the Meiji period that started in 1868, to each and every term in it.


In 1879, the Ministry of Education of the Meiji government started to compile and the project was later passed to the Tokyo gakushiin (later became the Japan Academy), Koten Kokyusho (research institute for Shinto sect) and the Jingu Shicho (administration office for Jingu). The project completed in 1907 with a thousand volumes. The volumes were serially published from 1986 to 1914. The amount of volumes are counted as 350 volumes in the Japanese binding style, and 51 volumes in the Western binding style (the edition with 60 volumes are also available).

The contents are classified into 30 sections, including sections of Ten (gods of the heavens), Saiji (events throughout the year), Chi (earthy section), Jingi (gods of heaven and earth), Teio (emperors), Kani (official ranks), Horoku (stipend), Seiji (politics), Horitsu (law), Senka (currency), Syoryo (measurement), Gaiko (diplomacy), Heiji (military), Bugi (martial arts), Hougi (technology), Shukyo (religion), Bungaku (literary), Reishiki (code of etiquette), Gaku (dance and music), Jin (personnel), Seimei (surname), Sangyo (industry), Fukushoku (garment), Inshoku (eat and drink), Kyosho (living home), Kiyo (art), Yugi (amusement), Dobutsu (animal), Shokubutsu (plant), and Kanaishi (metal). Each section has a brief explanation, and includes citations from references from days of the Rikkokushi (six ancient literatures, up to the 9th century) to the Keio period (just before the Meiji period, almost the middle of the 19th century).

The Koten Kokyusho took over the project in 1890, and it established Kokugakuin, later Kokugakuin Universty, and started to give lectures in the same period. The project was then moved to the Jingu Shicho in 1895, and the members of the Koten Kenkyusho continuously took the charge of the members of the editorial board. This was a big project by the scholars of the Japanese classics in the Meiji period. Detailed articles of this topics are found in "A publication history of the Sandai Hensanbutsu, Gunshoruiju, Kojiruien and Kokusho-somokuroku" by Atsumi KUMATA.
(Bensei Publishing Inc., 2009)