Kishimoto Tatsuo (岸本辰雄)

Tatsuo KISHIMOTO (November 13, 1851-April 5, 1912) was a law scholar in Japan. He was the founder of Meiji University.

Personal Profile

He was born as the third son of Heijiro KISHIMOTO, a samurai of the Tottori Domain in present Tottori City. After taking part in a campaign of the Boshin War, he enrolled Kaisei School (later Tokyo University) in 1870 upon the recommendation of the Tottori Domain. In August 1872, he enrolled Shihosho Hogakko (a law school later absorbed into Tokyo University) as its inaugural student and studied under Gustave Emile BOISSONADE. He graduated from the school in July 1876. He enrolled the University of Paris in France later and returned to Japan in 1880.

In 1881, together with Kozo MIYAGI and Misao YASHIRO, KISHIMOTO founded Meiji Law School, the predecessor of Meiji University, and became the first president of the school. Kozo MIYAGI lectured on criminal law while KISHIMOTO and Misao YASHIRO took it in turn to lecture on civil law.

He held the posts of a councilor of the Cabinet Legislation Bureau, a councilor for the Ministry of Justice, and a judge of Daishin-in (Predecessor of the Supreme Court of Japan). In 1889, he ran for the first Lower House elections from Tottori Prefecture, his constituency, but withdrew from elections soon afterwards. In 1890, he was assigned to a judge of Daishin-in. In 1893, he was certified as an attorney.

In 1912, he died from cerebral anemia on his way to Meiji University by train. His grave is located on the Second 4-9 site of Yanaka Cemetery.