Higashiyama Tennō (東山天皇) (October 21, 1675 - January 16, 1710) was the 113th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. He reigned from May 6, 1687 until his abdication on July 27, 1709, corresponding to the Genroku era.
The previous hundred years of peace and isolation in Japan had created relative economic stability. The arts, theater and architecture flourished.
Prior to Higashiyama's ascension to the Chrysanthemum Throne, his personal name (imina) was Asahito (朝 仁) or Tomohito. Tomohito was born on October 21, 1675 and was the fifth son of Emperor Reigen; his birth mother was a lady-in-waiting named Matsuki Muneko.
While Prince Tomohito was the son of a secondary consort, he was adopted by Empress Takatsukasa Fusako (chief consort or Chūgū). Tomohito's imperial family lived with him in the Dairi of the Heian Palace.
Events that took place before Tomohito became crown prince include a great flood that devastated Edo (present-day Tokyo), a great famine that devastated Kyoto, and the Great Tenna Fire in Edo.
The Buddhist temple Shingon Gokoku-ji was also founded in Edo, where it remains today as one of the few sites in Tokyo to survive World War II. Tomohito-shinnō was proclaimed crown prince in 1682 and received the pre-accession title of Go-no-miya (五 宮).
For the first time in more than 300 years, a ceremonial investiture was held for the occasion. A fire burned the Kyoto Imperial Palace to ashes in 1684, prompting a reconstruction that took a year to complete.
The effects of this fire on the imperial family, if any, are unknown. Emperor Reigen's brother, the exemperor Go-Sai, died on March 26, 1685, and a large comet was observed crossing the night sky.
Prince Tomohito acceded to the throne on May 2, 1687 as Emperor when his father abdicated in his favor, the era name was changed from Jōkyō to Genroku to mark this event.
While he held the political title of Emperor, it was in name only as the Shoguns of the Tokugawa family controlled Japan. Initially, Emperor Reigen continued to rule in Higashiyama's name as a cloistered emperor as had been done in the Heian period.
While this move caused problems by provoking the ruling shogunate, Higashiyama's gentle character helped improve relations with the Shōgun. This warm relationship led to the increase of imperial property and repairs were carried out on the imperial mausoleums.
Meanwhile, Reigen lived out his retirement in the Sentō-gosho (the palace for a former Emperor), and is now known to be the last "cloistered Emperor" of Japan.
On the 16th day of the 11th month of this year, he reestablished the Daijōsai (大嘗祭), the first ceremonial offering of rice by a newly enthroned emperor. On December 20, 1688, the esoteric Daijō-sai ceremony was revived due to the insistence of the shogunate.
This Shinto ritual had been in abeyance for more than a century, and the emperor performs it only once during the period of the enthronement ceremonies.
On July 27, 1709, Emperor Higashiyama abdicates his power and passes it to his son the crown prince, Emperor Nakamikado. The following year, on January 16, 1710, Higashiyama dies of smallpox.
Higashiyama is among those enshrined in the imperial mausoleum Tsuki no wa no misasagi, at Sennyū-ji in Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto.
Also enshrined at this location are this emperor's immediate imperial predecessors since Emperor Go-Mizunoo: Meishō, Go-Kōmyō, Go-Sai and Reigen.
Higashiyama's immediate imperial successors, including Nakamikado, Sakuramachi, Momozono, Go-Sakuramachi, and Go-Momozono, are also enshrined there.
The years of Higashiyama's reign are more specifically identified by more than one era name or nengō.
He was the fifth son of Reigen Tennō. He had at least ten children:Empress: Princess Yukiko (幸子女王), Empress Dowager SyōSyū (承秋門院), daughter of Arisugawa-no-miya Yukihito.