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Home » 3. Institutions and Administrative Practices » The Emperor
Kunaishō
(Imperial Household Ministry)
Originally, the Kunaishō, which was in charge of all court affairs, was one of the eight agencies established under the Ritsuryō system. With the dissolution of the Ritsuryō system, however, the Agency gradually lost its actual power, and only returned to prominence with the Meiji Restoration. The Kunaishō began as part of the Daijōkan in 1869 and, with the establishment of the Cabinet system, became an independent ministry in 1885. The Agency was the primary authority for all matters related to the Imperial Household, with the Grand Master of the Household holding ultimate responsibility (i.e., administration of Agency officials, supervision of noble families [kazoku], and countersigner for all Imperial rescripts). The agency was comprised of the Imperial Agency Minister, attendants, Shikibushoku, the Department of Aristocratic Affairs (Sōchitsuryō), the Department of Imperial Mausolea, the Imperial Library, the Imperial doctor, the Imperial kitchen, the Imperial storehouse, the Imperial tailor, the Imperial stable, the attendant of the Empress, the Imperial priest, the Bureau of Imperial Forests, the Imperial Conservatory, Gakushūin University, and Gakushūin Women's College. In the postwar period, a GHQ decree lead to drastic cuts and restructuring of the Agency. In 1947 it was renamed the Kunaifu, and, two years later, reorganized as an affiliated agency of the Prime Minister's office, now named the Kunaichō. Currently it operated under the jurisdiction of the Cabinet Office.

— Ōhara Yasuo
Structure of Kunaishō (Aug.1945)


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