chapter  2
18 Pages

THE MUTSU PERIOD, 1884-96

Mutsu entered government service after the Restoration. Though he came from outside the favoured four Western clans, he was appointed governor of various prefectures in 1869 and was able to fit in a visit to London in the following year. After his resignation in 1874, he was nominated as a member of the genroin but he grew dissatisfied with the government dominated by the major clans and joined the conspiracy to overthrow it three years later. He was captured and cast into prison for five years. Mutsu spent the time in writing and, among other things, translating Jeremy Bentham's 'Introduction to the principles of morals and legislation' into Japanese (1883). In the following year he went abroad, staying mainly in London but with journeys to Berlin and Vienna. This was a time of study, mainly in the field of constitutional law.