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A History of the Japanese People by F. Brinkley

Such Imperial Ordinances shall


The

"rights and interests" here referred to are defined as follows in the preamble:

"The consolidation and maintenance of the general peace in the regions of eastern Asia and of India."

"The preservation of the common interests of all powers in China by insuring the independence and integrity of the Chinese empire and the principle of equal opportunities for the commerce and industry of all nations in China."

"The maintenance of the territorial rights of the high contracting parties in the regions of eastern Asia and of India, and the defence of their special interests in the said regions."

This remarkable agreement came into force from the date of its signature, and its period of duration was fixed at ten years. During its existence the two powers, England and Japan, are pledged to use all endeavours for maintaining not only peace in the East, but also the independence and integrity of China. The significance of such a pledge is appreciated when we recall the dimensions of the British navy supplemented by the Japanese, and when we further recall that Japan, with her base of operations within easy reach of the Asiatic continent, can place half a million of men in the field at any moment. The second steady-point is China's financial condition. She is the debtor of several Western nations, and they may be trusted to avert from her any vicissitude

that would impair her credit as a borrower. Prominent among such vicissitudes is the dismemberment of the country.

ENGRAVING: SEAL OF SESSHO, THE PAINTER

APPENDIX

1. CONSTITUTION OF THE EMPIRE OF JAPAN

TOKYO, FEBRUARY 11, 1889

CHAPTER I. THE EMPEROR

Article I. The Empire of Japan shall be ruled over by Emperors of the dynasty, which has reigned in an unbroken line of descent for ages past.

Article II. The succession to the throne shall devolve upon male descendants of the Imperial House, according to the provisions of the Imperial House Law.

Article III. The person of the Emperor is sacred and inviolable.

Article IV. The Emperor being the Head of the Empire the rights of sovereignty are invested in him, and he exercises them in accordance with the provisions of the present Constitution.

Article V. The Emperor exercises the legislative power with the consent of the Imperial Diet.

Article VI. The Emperor gives sanction to laws, and orders them to be promulgated and put into force.

Article VII. The Emperor convokes the Imperial Diet, opens, closes, and prorogues it, and dissolves the House of Representatives.

Article VIII. In case of urgent necessity, when the Imperial Diet is not sitting, the Emperor, in order to maintain the public safety or to avert a public danger, has the power to issue Imperial Ordinances, which shall take the place of laws. Such Imperial Ordinances shall, however, be laid before the Imperial Diet at its next session, and should the Diet disapprove of the said Ordinances, the Government shall declare them to be henceforth invalid.


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