Yano Harumichi (矢野玄道)
Harumichi YANO, born on December 18, 1823, in Arimatsu, Azo Village, Kita County, Iyo Province (present-day Osu City, Ehime Prefecture), was a scholar of Japanese classical culture and a theologian. He was called Shigetaro in his childhood and also called 'Tenhosanjin', 'shisei', 'shinshin', 'yaguhisa', 'korakukanjin', 'fusoshinjinisho', 'yaba' and 'umeya'. His original surname was 'Heishi'.
Brief Chronological Table
He was born in Kita Country, Iyo Province as a son of Senzaemondosei YANO, a statesman of the Osu clan.
In 1825, at around three years of age, he read some books of around 1,000 words while in his grand mother's arms.
In 1827, his father Dosei gave him calligraphy lessons.
In 1833, he started studying Japanese classical culture as recommended by his father who became a disciple of Atsutane HIRATA.
In 1840, he became a disciple of Hakugan KUSAKA (a professor of Meikyokan).
In 1841, at the age of 19, he changed his name to 'Takamichi' and was called 'fusoshinjinisho'.
At the end of February, 1844, he set out on a journey to Kyushu to visit the Usahachimangu-Shrine in Bungo Province, the Hakozakigu-Shrine and the Dazaifu tenmangu Shrine in Chikuzen Province via Nagato Province. After visiting the Shindai ruins in Hyuga Province, he visited the Kirishima-jingu Shrine in Satsuma Province and then, he climbed Mt. Kirishima-yama. After that, he climbed Mt. Aso in Kumamoto Province via Higo Province and when he came back, he recorded a chronicle of his experience.
On March 5, 1847, he formally entered the Hirata school. Then, on March 10, he entered 'Shoheizaka gakumonsho' (prestigious school).
In 1855, he started writing "Kotenyoku" which was one of his life's works.
In 1867, his plan was discussed in the Imperial Court and they came to an agreement on setting up schools.
In March 1870, he was called to Tokyo and received the title of Doctor of Philosophy and the honor of Jurokui (Junior Sixth Rank).
In 1877, at the age of 55, he had been sick for some time since May. During the time from February to March, he completed writing "Kishinyoron" and "Honkyogakuchu." He went to Kyoto with his brother, Naomichi and his close friend, Seika TOKIWAI. On December 15th, he was appointed as 'Dajyokanshushikan goyogakari' (a high ranking government employee who worked on compiling Japanese history).
In 1882, he became the first head of faculty of literature at the Koten kokyusho (the Institution for the study of Shinto).
On January 19, 1883, he was transferred to another position, 'gokeifu' (genealogy of the Imperial family). He finished writing a book titled "zoku kokoku shinsenki".
In 1886, he returned to his hometown and took care of his mother, however on December 14th, she died.
He was profoundly influenced by Taoism which he learned in his younger days, so he did not seek honor or high ranking positions. Moreover, he was single all his life without caring for earthly affairs he devoted his whole life to writing books on the study of Japanese classical culture, making maximum effort to learn it more with his heart and soul.
Whenever he read books, he never failed to take notes about important things or thoughts of scholars and try to memorize these things. He read tremendous amounts of books on various regions and categories and the numbers of books he copied reached about 700 volumes. Yano bunko placed in the public library of Osu City preserves most of the collections of his books and theses which his descendants presented.