Take our user survey and make your voice heard.
Princess Aiko
Image: Pakutaso
national

Princess Aiko won’t have tiara made for her, in consideration of hard economic times

37 Comments
By Casey Baseel, SoraNews24

By custom, when a female member of Japan’s imperial family turns 20 years old, a tiara is made for her. Though the legal age of adulthood was recently changed to 18, 20 is still culturally considered the start of adulthood in Japan, as it’s the age at which individuals take part in coming of age ceremonies. Members of the imperial household wear their tiara for their coming of age ceremony and also at formal official functions they attend as adults.

In a break with tradition, though, when Princess Aiko (the only daughter of Japan’s current emperor and empress) turned 20 in December of 2021, no tiara was made for her. Instead, she appeared before the press wearing the tiara of her aunt Sayoko Kuroda, the youngest daughter of the former emperor and empress.

▼ Aiko, wearing the borrowed tiara

At the time, the Imperial Household Agency, which manages the royal family’s affairs, said that the family felt it would be unseemly to spend the money for such a lavish luxury while the coronavirus pandemic was having such a negative effect on ordinary citizens’ lives. With Japan still operating under pandemic protocols through 2022, no tiara was made for Aiko last year either, and that’s not going to change for this year, according to the Imperial Household Agency’s latest budget requests for the upcoming fiscal year, which were submitted this week and contain no request for the production of a tiara for Aiko.

Japan has now largely entered a post-pandemic phase in terms of public health protocols. However, the country is experiencing its worst inflation in more than a generation, with prices for necessities such as food, clothing, and utilities rapidly rising without comparable increases in workers’ wages. Given that economic climate, the imperial family has once again decided that it’s not the best time for it to be purchasing jewel-encrusted hair accessories, especially since such expenses are paid out of public funds allocated to the family. The deadline for amendments to the agency’s budget requests is at the end of this month, but a late addition of a request for tiara funds is unlikely.

As custom-made items, the price of the imperial family’s tiaras varies by the individual piece. The most recent tiara, crafted for Aiko’s cousin Princess Kako in 2013, cost 27.93 million yen, and the 2010 piece made for then-princess Mako was 28.56 million yen, so if a tiara were to be made for Aiko, it likely would be of a similar cost. The “then-princess” designation for Mako is significant as well. When Japan’s princesses marry, they are considered to have joined their husband’s family and left the imperial household. As the tiaras are purchased with state funds, upon leaving the imperial family the former princess is required to return the tiara, as Mako did following her marriage in 2021.

At the present time, there are eight returned tiaras being stored, unused, in the Imperial Household Agency’s warehouses. Assuming they’re all of values similar to those of Kako’s and Mako’s, that would be somewhere around 224 million yen’s worth of publicly funded jewelry, and one could make the argument that with so many pricy family heirlooms sitting idle, there really isn’t much need to acquire any more during tough economic ties for the nation.

Source: YouTube/テレ東BIZ via Jin, Nikkan Gendai

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- The Sailor Moon wedding tiara: For when you take the step from magical girl to magical wife

-- Royal smile: Princess Kako of Akishino stuns netizens with her elegant beauty

-- Japan’s legal age of adulthood dropping by two years, but do teens understand what that means?

© SoraNews24

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

37 Comments
Login to comment

The most recent tiara, crafted for Aiko’s cousin Princess Kako in 2013, cost 27.93 million yen, and the 2010 piece made for then-princess Mako was 28.56 million yen, so if a tiara were to be made for Aiko, it likely would be of a similar cost.

Nice of the Imperial Household Agency to want to appear to be considerate of hard economic times. But wasn’t the economy worse in 2010 (Lehman Shock Recovery) and 2013 (Earthquake & Tsunami Recovery)?

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

Nice of the Imperial Household Agency to want to appear to be considerate of hard economic times. But wasn’t the economy worse in 2010 (Lehman Shock Recovery) and 2013 (Earthquake & Tsunami Recovery)?

At that time it just considered one time event, with Economy will rebound, now with population decline and price increase due to inflation, at the same time Japan already lost many of competitive advantage, J govt hasn't provide any good plan for the future? Just preaching about new capitalism, and nobody even know what is that.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

Princess Aiko won’t have tiara made for her, in consideration of hard economic times

But, but the LDP, BoJ and Japan Inc are telling us the stock market is at an all time high, wages are rising, unemployment is almost non-existent and anyone can get a good job?

I guess Princess Aiko is smarter than any of them.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

Utterly pointless and wasteful to create a new one if you have a pile of unused pieces sitting around. Start a new tradition of reuse, even if such an apparent display of frugality is just a façade.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

I have ¥20000 for any second hand royal treasure.

-10 ( +4 / -14 )

Rodney

last week you were broke. This week you have ¥200,000 for imperials treasures.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

Here's an idea: why not completely dismantle the imperial family system, and all royalty around the world, to help the people of those countries in the hard economic times?

Imagine how many mouths we could feed and electricity bills we could pay if we shared their money among the people?

-4 ( +10 / -14 )

Imagine how many mouths we could feed and electricity bills we could pay if we shared their money among the people?

It would work out to less than ¥5,000 per person.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Nice. How considerate of her. That tiara costs what I'd make after grinding at work for ten years.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

wallaceToday 09:42 am JST

It would work out to less than ¥5,000 per person.

How on earth did you get this figure? It would depend on how much their holdings are worth (which we don't know yet), plus the cost of security, administration, etc. society would save by not looking after them around the clock.

Roy SophveasonToday 09:38 am JST

That's a fancy idea straight out of Star Trek, but where then do you stop? Expropriate the rich and distribute everything evenly?

Just the imperial family/royalty will be fine for me: that is, people who receive special treatment from the state for doing nothing other than being born into a particular family.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Here's an idea: why not completely dismantle the imperial family system, and all royalty around the world, to help the people of those countries in the hard economic times?

Imagine how many mouths we could feed and electricity bills we could pay if we shared their money among the people?

100% Agree!

And Tokyo’s Imperial Palace would make a great Central Park.

A bit of that land is already accessible, but having the whole lot would be more just.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

isabelle

   wallace

   It would work out to less than ¥5,000 per person.

> How on earth did you get this figure? It would depend on how much their holdings are worth (which we don't know yet), plus the cost of security, administration, etc. society would save by not looking after them around the clock.

   

I overestimated actually. Estimated wealth is ¥56 billion divided by 127 million people would work out at ¥440 per person.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

isabelleToday  09:35 am JST

Here's an idea: why not completely dismantle the imperial family system, and all royalty around the world, to help the people of those countries in the hard economic times?

Wow, a big chip on each shoulder.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

isabelleToday  09:35 am JST

Here's an idea: why not completely dismantle the imperial family system, and all royalty around the world, to help the people of those countries in the hard economic times?

Imagine how many mouths we could feed and electricity bills we could pay if we shared their money among the people?

If we shaved off the world’s mountains and made everything completely flat, we’d be covered in 4km-deep water.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

wallaceToday 10:25 am JST

I overestimated actually. Estimated wealth is ¥56 billion divided by 127 million people would work out at ¥440 per person.

Even if this figure is correct (I haven't checked), estimated wealth still doesn't take into account the ongoing use of public funds for their benefit. For instance, the taxpayers' money given to them by the government for their "expenses" and upkeep of properties, etc.

They also have many administrative staff, and security guarding them around the clock, which costs even more public money. This money could be better used elsewhere, with the administrative staff moved to government departments to perform work for the people that actually pay this money, and the police freed up to fight actual crime.

And, of course, it's not just the money - it's the idea that, in this day and age, some people are considered "better" than others and "special," simply because of an accident of birth. It makes no sense and is totally wrong.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

I overestimated actually. Estimated wealth is ¥56 billion divided by 127 million people would work out at ¥440 per person.

I see that you included foreign residents in your calculation and the 1.6 million Japanese who have died since Japan’s population was 127 million. Would they realistically be expected to receive a payment?

And you chose not to include future annual Imperial Household Agency budgets, maintenance costs, and security expenses, all rising at a current inflationary rate exceeding 2%.

Interesting math.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Asiaman7Today 10:21 am JST

And Tokyo’s Imperial Palace would make a great Central Park.

Indeed. The park could be fully open to the public, with a small charge to enter the palace, just like castles all around the country.

Japan would make an absolute fortune through tourism in this way.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Here's an idea: why not completely dismantle the imperial family system.

This dynasty is older than Jesus. It would be a shame to dismantle such a historic tradition.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Why not just add it to Kishida's bill?

Her tiara will cost a lot less than anything Kishida (using tax money) spends on frivolously, in an hour.

What's the difference?

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

isabelle

it is well known on this site I'm not a supporter of royal, imperial, or privileged people.

If the imperial family didn't exist then many would lose their employment and the support money would stop. The amount per citizen shared would be tiny.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

The Princess should lead .... as in buy the material from her own purse, and fabricate the thing herself. Be a walking beacon of strength, confidence, independance, and morality the JP woman is supposed to aspire to.

I mean that is the point of the Royals, correct? Be something to admire as an example, and to represent the best in us?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

She could just have her dad buy it from the money he has in savings, no need to use public funds. Not to mention when (if) she gets married, she will be leaving the royal family anyway, and that would be a pretty nice nest egg or dowry for her too!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

There's mythology and then there is history. Japanese didn't start recording anything in writing until the 6th century CE. With few exceptions Japanese emperors have not been at the apex of Japanese government for more than a millennia.

This dynasty is older than Jesus.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Admirable sentiment. Wish the money-grubbing politicians who are supposedly running the country had the same sentiments. A bit more austerity and a little less bonus is called for.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

A tiara won't help.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I can't imagine Princess Aiko is rushed off her feet busy every day, she's probably got quite a bit of time on her hands...... time to take up a nice craft-hobby, and get to work on designing and making Her Own Tiara - some nice bits of old re-purposed gold, some nice Swaroski crystals, and she'd be nearly there. Could gain quite a bit of kudos from younger Japanese people for being environmentally and economically aware, as well as being an aspiring designer.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Princess Aiko is a full-time student at Gakushuin University.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

How Humble and sweet, thank you so much for your Consideration , and I hope as things improve a NEW Tiara will be made for you, thank you.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

They just didn’t want to show her crowned.

This is terrible judgement because her mother was from the common world probably. She doesn’t have the thiara. This is a symbol of parental bad treatment when the tradition in interrupted. Always. Now, she may not have pass the ritual to get the thiara. Normal this is more like a diploma in monarchy. This is a terrible shame for a Princess to now get a ritual thiara. With a « weird » genetic birth, this is a urge block for the young prince and heir too. This is not the mom Origin the problem at this point of the investigation (she was probably attacked like many intelligent women all over the world, I was). The problem is the unnatural way of creating life.

Japan loose both the Princess and Little Prince with this thiara. Just to be fair.

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

RedemptionToday  05:57 pm JST

A tiara won't help.

But she has money, and I know which I'd prefer.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Wise choice Aiko.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

But this will cause economic hardship for tiara makers.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

This dynasty is older than Jesus. It would be a shame to dismantle such a historic tradition.

I don’t want my taxes paying for your “religion.”

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Plagarizing from Wikipedia -

The Imperial House recognizes 126 monarchs, beginning with Emperor Jimmu (traditionally dated to 11 February 660 BC), and continuing up to the current emperor, Naruhito. However, scholars have agreed that there is no evidence of Jimmu's existence, that the traditional narrative of Japan's founding is mythical, and that Jimmu is a mythical figure. Historical evidence for the first 25 emperors is mythical, but there is sufficient evidence of an unbroken hereditary line since the early 6th century. Historically verifiable Emperors of Japan start from AD 539 with Emperor Kinmei.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I am Japanese.

The Japanese Imperial Family is in the midst of a power struggle.

She is deeply intelligent, considerate of the people, and not extravagant. That is Princess Aiko, the Princess Aiko of Japan.

Empress Masako has an award of excellence from Harvard University, and Her Majesty has a deep friendship with the British Royal Family.

Her only daughter is Princess Aiko.

I deeply respect her.

The family of Prince Akishino, the Emperor's younger brother, is the exact opposite.

They are incompetent and make no effort.

Their son uses taxpayers' money to enter a prestigious school through the back door.

Prince Eugene was reported around the world as a plagiarized prince.

However, Princess Aiko cannot become emperor because of a law made 100 years ago when the values of male chauvinism were strong.

That law was about to be amended 15 years ago.

However, the law could not be amended and the imperial line was usurped because Akishinomiya intentionally gave birth to a boy.

As the future emperor, Akishino no Miya is all about selfishness. She built a 5 billion yen mansion with taxpayer money and abused the people.

The United Nations has called Japan's laws discriminatory against women.

Many Japanese hope that the law will be amended so that Princess Aiko can become emperor.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites