On This Day

Itō Hirobumi

1st Prime Minister of Japan Itō Hirobumi

Full Name: Hayashi Risuke
Profession: 1st Prime Minister of Japan

Nationality:
Japan
Japanese

Biography: Itō was the first Prime Minister of Japan during the Meiji era, in which he was a central figure of the Meiji Restoration. He was a member of the genrō, which was a group of Japanese statesman that advised the emperor as a council of elders.

Prime Minister of Japan four times, Itō came to the fore in the 1880s. He remained powerful even when out of office, as he remained a permanent adviser to the emperor.

In terms of foreign policy, Itō strengthened ties to the great Western powers. He oversaw the First Sino-Japanese War and negotiated favourable terms for Japan; at the same time, he sought to avoid conflict with Russia—which ultimately failed, resulting in the Russo-Japanese War.

Born: October 16, 1841

Star Sign: Libra

Died: October 26, 1909 (aged 68)
Cause of Death: Assassinated by Korean nationalist An Jung-geun in Harbin, China

Historical Events

  • 1885-12-22 Itō Hirobumi, a samurai, becomes the first Prime Minister of Japan
  • 1898-01-12 Itō Hirobumi begins his third term as Prime Minister of Japan
  • 1909-10-26 Itō Hirobumi, Resident-General of Korea, and former Japanese Prime Minister is shot and killed by Korean nationalist An Jung-geun in Harbin, China

Famous Japanese People