• Kyodo


The date of the wedding between Princess Ayako — the youngest daughter of Emperor Akihito’s late cousin, Prince Takamado — and commoner Kei Moriya was officially set for Oct. 29 in a traditional ceremony held Wednesday.

In the Kokki no Gi rite held at the Takamado residence in Tokyo, a relative of Moriya acting as his messenger announced the date to Princess Ayako in the presence of her mother, Princess Hisako. It was one of a string of traditional rites set to precede their marriage.

“I gratefully accept,” the 28-year-old princess told 76-year-old Tatsuya Kondo, a former head of the Center Hospital of the National Center for Global Health and Medicine, according to the Imperial Household Agency.

The wedding between Princess Ayako and Moriya, 32, will take place at Tokyo’s Meiji Shrine and will be attended by Imperial family members including Princess Hisako, the widow of the late Prince Takamado, and Princess Tsuguko, the eldest sister of the bride.

The day after the nuptials, a banquet to be attended by Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako as well as the heads of the three branches of government will be held at Hotel New Otani in Tokyo.

According to the agency, the princess and her fiance are busy preparing for a series of ceremonies and their life at a new residence after their marriage. They are not planning to have a honeymoon.

After the marriage, Princess Ayako will leave the Imperial family as Imperial House Law stipulates that women lose their royal status after marrying a commoner.

Among other ceremonies in the run-up to their marriage are Kashikodokoro Koreiden Shinden ni Essuru no Gi, in which Princess Ayako will pay respects at the three palace sanctuaries for the last time as a member of the Imperial family, and Choken no Gi, in which she will express her appreciation to the Emperor and the Empress.

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