Sample newspaper article



Words and phrases

昭和天皇 (しょうわてんのう) Emperor Showa (Emperor Hirohito)

85歳 (はちじゅうごさい) 85 years old

昭和62 (しょうわろくじゅうに) Showa 62

戦争責任 (せんそうせきにん) war responsibility

巡る (めぐる) to concern

苦悩 (くのう) trouble

漏らす (もらす) to reveal

元侍従 (もとじじゅう) former chamberlain

故小林忍氏 (ここばやししのぶし) the late Mr. Shinobu Kobayashi

日記 (にっき) diary

記す (しるす) to write down

分かる (わかる) to be discovered

共同通信 (きょうどうつうしん) Kyodo News

入手した (にゅうしゅした) acquired, obtained

発言 (はつげん) statement

仕事 (しごと) work

楽 (らく) comfort

細い (ほそい) thin

長い (ながい) long

生きる (いきる) to live

仕方がない (しかたがない) it’s no use

辛い (つらい) painful, cruel

多い (おおい) many, much

兄弟 (きょうだい) brothers

近親者 (きんしんしゃ) relatives

不幸 (ふこう) death

記述する (きじゅつする) to describe

日中戦争 (にっちゅうせんそう) Second Sino-Japanese War

太平洋戦争 (たいへいようせんそう) Pacific War (1941-45 Asian theater of World War II)

経験した (けいけんした) experienced

晩年 (ばんねん) later years of life

気に掛ける (きにかける) to be concerned about

心情 (しんじょう) feelings

改めて (あらためて) once again

浮き彫り (うきぼり) relief, bringing to the fore

側近 (そっきん) close aide

務める (つとめる) to work for

後半 (こうはん) latter half

重要 (じゅうよう) important, essential

史料 (しりょう) historical records

Quick questions

1) 共同通信は誰の日記を入手しましたか。

2) 昭和天皇が経験した戦争は何ですか。

3) 日記はいつ書かれましたか。


The diaries of the late Chamberlain Shinobu Kobayashi from April 1987 (Showa 62), when Emperor Showa was 85 years old, reveal how the Emperor was troubled by his war responsibilities. Kyodo News had obtained the full set of diaries by Aug. 22. According to a description in the diary, the Emperor said, “There is no point in living a longer life by reducing my workload. It would only increase my chances of seeing or hearing things that are agonizing. I have experienced the deaths of my brother and relatives and have been told about my war responsibility.”

The diaries once again demonstrate how Emperor Showa, who experienced both the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Pacific War, was concerned by issues surrounding war responsibility in the last years of his life. Kobayashi worked as a close aide to the Emperor for many years, and his diary is an important historical record of the latter half of the Showa Era.


1) Whose diaries did Kyodo News acquire?


The late Chamberlain Shinobu Kobayashi’s.

2) What war or wars did Emperor Showa experience?


The Second Sino-Japanese War and the Pacific War.

3) When were the diary entries written?


April 1987.

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