Japanese Emperor Naruhito, who proclaimed enthronement in October after he acceded to the throne in May, thanked thousands of well-wishers gathered outside his palace. The crowd was present at a ceremony organized by conservative political and business groups. Naruhito, along with Empress Masako, greeted the crowd from the Nijubashi bridge as they cheered their Emperor in unison. He also expressed his grief and sympathy for the victims of typhoon Hagibis that caused massive destruction in Japan.
After the abdication of Akihito, Naruhito’s father, the Emperor proclaimed enthronement in a royal ceremony on October 22.
"I pledge hereby that I shall act according to the Constitution and fulfil my responsibility as the symbol of the State and of the unity of the people of Japan, while always wishing for the happiness of the people and the peace of the world, turning my thoughts to the people and standing by them", declared the 59-year-old emperor in the enthronement ceremony.
The emperor was presented with two out of the three sacred treasures containing a replica sword representing the sword Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi and a necklace of comma-shaped stone beads called the Yasakani no magatama. The third treasure, the mirror Yata-no-Kagami is enshrined in the Ise Grand Shrine, a shrine considered as the embodiment of the Sun Goddess Amaterasu.
The last enthrone ritual was held in 1990 when Akihito acceded to the throne and was the first one to be covered on television. The royal ceremony was graced by 2,500 people including several dignitaries from around the world. Representatives from more than 190 countries attended the ceremony. Prince Charles of Britain, Chinese Vice-President Wang Qishan, South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon were among the dignitaries.
Naruhito, born in 1960 in Tokyo Imperial Palace, graduated from Gakushuin University in March 1982 with a Bachelor of Letters degree in history. He got married to Masako Owada in 1993 after he became the crown prince in 1991 following his grandfather’s death. Emperor and Empress have a daughter named Aiko, Princess Toshi who was born in 2001 after Masako suffered a miscarriage in 1999.