|Empress Masako Quick Info|
|Height||5 ft 6 in|
|Date of Birth||December 9, 1963|
Empress Masako is the Empress of Japan and the consort of Emperor Naruhito, who ascended to the Chrysanthemum Throne in 2019.
Toranomon Hospital, Toranomon, Tokyo, Japan
Empress Masako attended Detskiy Sad (kindergarten in Russian) No. 1127 daycare in Moscow as well as New York City public kindergarten No. 81.
Later, she studied at Futaba Gakuen, a private Roman Catholic girls’ school in Den-en-chōfu, Tokyo. Her mother and maternal grandmother had also graduated from the same school. During her time at Futaba Gakuen, Masako learned to play piano and tennis, joined a handicrafts club, and became interested in animals, tending many after school and eventually deciding to become a veterinarian. She studied her 4thy and 5th languages i.e. French and German.
Afterward, she got enrolled at Belmont High School located in Belmont, Massachusetts, where she served as the president of the National Honor Society as well as participated in the school’s math team and French club. She joined the school’s softball team, won a Goethe Society award for her German poetry, and graduated in 1981.
In 1981, she enrolled in the Economics Department of Harvard University/Radcliffe College, where she became chair of the school’s Japan Society, “became quite close friends with the then Japanese consul in Boston, and volunteered as a kind of self-appointed diplomat and cultural ambassador” in the wake of mounting Japan–United States trade tension. She studied at Goethe-Institut in Germany as well as attended University Center for French Studies at Université Grenoble Alpes in France.
She worked with Jeffrey Sachs to obtain a B.A. magna cum laude in economics in March 1985. Masako also studied law at the University of Tokyo.
Empress of Japan, Consort of Emperor Naruhito
- Father – Hisashi Owada (Former Jurist, Diplomat, Law Professor, Served as a Judge on the International Court of Justice from 2003 until June 7, 2018, and was President of the Court from 2009 to 2012)
- Mother – Yumiko Egashira
- Siblings – Setsuko (Younger Sister), Reiko (Younger Sister)
- Others – Yutaka Egashira (Maternal Grandfather), Akihito (Father-In-Law) (Member of the Imperial House of Japan who reigned as the 125th emperor of Japan), Empress Michiko (Mother-In-Law) (Member of the Imperial House of Japan who served as the Empress consort of Japan as the wife of Akihito), Fumihito, Prince Akishino (Brother-In-Law), Sayako Kuroda (Sister-In-Law) (Imperial Shinto priestess of the Ise Grand Shrine who has served as the Supreme Priestess)
Note – Setsuko and Reiko are twins.
5 ft 6 in or 167.5 cm
57 kg or 125.5 lbs
Boyfriend / Spouse
Empress Masako has dated –
- Naruhito (1992-Present) – After initially refusing to marry the prince because it would force her to give up her promising career in diplomacy and severely restrict her independence and freedoms, Masako accepted the 3rd proposal by Naruhito on December 9, 1992. Reportedly, he had argued that serving as Crown Princess of Japan would only be “another form of diplomacy”. On January 19, 1993, the Imperial Household Council formally announced the engagement and the ceremony was held on April 12, 1993. On June 9, 1993, she married Crown Prince Naruhito in a traditional wedding ceremony and assumed the formal style “Her Imperial Highness The Crown Princess of Japan”. The orchid flower Dendrobium Masako Kotaishi Hidenka was named in her honor to celebrate the wedding.
In December 1999, her first pregnancy was announced but she miscarried. The couple was blessed with a daughter named Aiko, Princess Toshi on December 1, 2001.
Race / Ethnicity
Empress Masako Facts
- She was 2 years old when she started living in Moscow with her parents. The family shifted to New York City when she was 5 years old.
- The family moved to the United States and settled in the Boston suburb of Belmont, Massachusetts in 1979.
- After her mother-in-law and her sister-in-law, Princess Kiko, Masako became the 3rd commoner to marry into the imperial family.
Featured Image by TICAD7 Photographs / Flickr / Public Domain