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ByJames A. Clapp

The first contact between Japan and the West took place there in 1543, when Portuguese ships landed on the nearby island of Tanegashima. Over the next three hundred years, Nagasaki would be the conduit for all Western technology coming into Japan. In 1590 Portuguese Jesuits set up East Asia's first metal printing press in Nagasaki. Forty-six years later, the Jesuits were kicked out for their political meddling and religious proselytizing and were replaced by the Dutch East India Company, which would never let such matters get in the way of a profitable trading opportunity. No city or landscape is truly rich unless it has been given the quality of myth by writer, painter, or by its association with great events. The city of the future will no longer be a place to earn money, but to play in. From time out of mind, cities have played an important part in the propagation of spiritual ideas.