chapter  1
10 Pages

The Birth of Edo and the Tokugawa Shoguns

TOKYO LIES AT the mouth of a small river which was of great importance in former times, and on the shores of a bay in the Pacific Ocean. This bay has thrust itself deep inland and its waters are quite shallow. A large part of the modem city has been developed on land gradually recovered from the sea, either as a result of the natural rising of the ground or as a result of long-term reclamation schemes. On the opposite side, Tokyo lies at the end of a wide plain - one of the few but also one of the largest in Japan - called the Musashi plain, which for a long time was swamp-land and is a name which appears in the poems of the Manyoshu, an eighth-century anthology.