Nagasaki Prefecture

From Academic Kids

Template:Japanese prefecture

Nagasaki Prefecture (長崎県; Nagasaki-ken) is located on Kyushu island, Japan. The capital is the city of Nagasaki.



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Oranda-zaka ("Dutch Slope") in Nagasaki

Nagasaki Prefecture, an unification of former provinces of Hizen, Tsushima, and Iki, has had close ties with foreign civilization for centuries. Facing China and Korea, the region around Hirado was a traditional center for traders and pirates.

During the 16th century, Catholic missionaries and traders from Portugal arrived and became active in Hirado and Nagasaki, which became a major center for foregin traders. The Christian belief in equality between men, however, did not comply with the political structure of Japan, and after being given free reign in Oda Nobunaga's period, the missionaries were forced out little by little, until finally, in the Tokugawa era, Christianity was banned. After the prohibition of Christianity in the Edo period, foreign trade was restricted to Chinese and Dutch traders in Nagasaki, Dejima, but Christianity continued underground. These 'Kakure Kirishitan'-hidden Christians- were tried at every step, forced to step on 'fumi-e'(stepping portraits-portraits of the Holy Mother Mary and saints) to prove that they were non-Christian. And with the banishment of all Catholic missionaries, traders from Catholic countries were also forced out of the country. Along with them, their children -half Japanese and half European, were also forced to leave the country. The majority was sent to Jagatara (Jakarta) and are still remembered by the locals as the people who wrote the poignant letters which were smuggled across the sea to their homeland. Today, Nagasaki has a prominent Chinatown and Catholic churches.

During the Meiji Restoration, Nagasaki and Sasebo became major ports for foreign trade, and eventually major naval bases and shipbuilding centers up to World War II. On August 9, 1945, a United States bomber dropped an atomic bomb on Nagasaki, which was reconstructed after the war.


Nagasaki borders Saga Prefecture on the east, and is otherwise surrounded by water, including Ariake Bay, the Tsushima Straits, and the East China Sea. It also includes a large number of islands such as Tsushima and Iki. Most of the prefecture is near the coast and there are a number of ports such as Nagasaki and the United States naval base at Sasebo.


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Castle in Shimabara
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The island of Hirado boasts a fine castle
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Sofukuji Obaku Zen temple in Nagasaki

Nagoya was located in the prefecture before.

Towns and villages

These are the towns and villages in each district.


Mergers and changes of municipalities

Merger: Tsushima (1 March 2004)

The Towns of Izuhara, Mitsushima, Toyotama, Mine, Kamiagata and Kamitsushima were merged to form the Tsushima.

Merger: Iki (1 March 2004)

The Towns of Gonoura, Katsumoto, Ashibe and Ishida were merged to form the City of Iki.

Merger: Shimo-Goto (1 August 2004)

The City of Fukue and the Towns of Tomie, Tamanoura, Miiraku, Kishiku and Naru were merged to form the City of Goto.

The Merger Council of the One City and Five Towns in Shimo-Goto (in Japanese) (

Merger: Kami-Goto (1 August 2004)

The Towns of Wakamatsu, Kamigoto, Shin'uonome, Arikawa and Narao were merged to form the Town of Shinkamigoto.

Absorption: Nagasaki Area (4 January 2005)

The Towns of Koyagi, Iojima, Takashima, Nomozaki, Sanwa and Sotome were absorbed into the City of Nagasaki.

The Merger Council of Nagasaki Area (in Japanese) (

Merger: Isahaya (1 March 2005)

The City of Isahaya and the Towns of Tarami, Moriyama, Iimori, Takaki and Konagai were merged to form the new City of Isahaya. The District of Kitatakaki was dissolved due to this merger.

Merger: Northern Area of Seihi (1 April 2005)

The Towns of Saikai, Seihi, Oshima, Sakito and Oseto were merged to form the City of Saikai.

The Merger Council of the Northern Area of Seihi (in Japanese) (

Absorption: Sasebo, Yoshii and Sechibaru (1 April 2005)

The Towns of Yoshii and Sechibaru were absorbed into the of City Sasebo.

The Merger Council of Sasebo, Yoshii and Sechibaru (in Japanese) (




Nagasaki is the most christianized area in Japan. As of 2002, there are 68,617 Catholics in Nagasaki Prefecture, accounting for 4.52 percent of the total population of the prefecture.


Prefectural symbols

Miscellaneous topics

External links


de:Prfektur Nagasaki

eo:Nagasaki (prefektujo) es:Prefectura de Nagasaki fr:Prfecture de Nagasaki ja:長崎県 ko:나가사키 현 pt:Nagasaki sv:Nagasaki prefektur zh:长崎县


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