Media hype over Reiwa, the newly announced name for the upcoming era, continued unabated Tuesday. At the same time, a majority of people appeared to happily welcome the name, which means “auspicious” (rei) and “peace” or “harmony” (wa).

However, the choice of the era name seems to reflect some important political considerations on the part of the government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe: For the first time, the two kanji chosen for the name were taken from Japanese classical literature, not Chinese.

Unable to view this article?

This could be due to a conflict with your ad-blocking or security software.

Please add japantimes.co.jp and piano.io to your list of allowed sites.

If this does not resolve the issue or you are unable to add the domains to your allowlist, please see out this support page.

We humbly apologize for the inconvenience.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.