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Statistical Data

Property and Buildings (As of April 1, 2018)


Site area: 31,120 m²


Building Name Area (in m²) Function
Total 18,739  
North Research Wing 2,113 Conference rooms, laboratories and faculty offices.
South Research Wing 1,721 Individual offices for faculty members, project rooms and graduate student rooms.
International Exchange Wing 797 Facilities for providing information and resources for individual researchers and research institutions in Japan and overseas and for holding seminars and other events.
Research Exchange Wing 837 Facility for the exchange of information among Center and outside researchers, featuring comfortable, homey atmosphere.
Information and Administrative Wing 3,043 Houses the offices for research support and for the administration and management of Nichibunken.
Conference Room I 442 Conference room with a capacity of 60 for large-scale team research projects and meetings.
Library 833 Library reading room holding approximately 60,000 volumes and audio visual room.
Library Annex I 1,398 Library stacks housing 200,000 volumes and an audiovisual collections with facilities for periodical browsing and research.
Library Annex II 1,051 Library stacks mainly foreign books with facilities for periodical browsing and research.
Library Annex III 1,548 Library housing various kinds of audiovisual materials and providing for perusal and research.
Auditorium 2,239 The auditorium is used for international conferences and symposiums, as well as for public lectures.
Nichibunken Houses 1,587 Residential facilities for visiting researchers from both Japan and overseas.
Services Wing 1,130 Houses a restaurant and other service facilities for the Nichibunken faculty and other staff.

Library Holdings (As of April 1, 2018)


Items Foreign language books Japanese language books Total
Total 181,515 362,918 544,433
Japanese studies and related books in foreign languages 66,464 5,463 71,927
Basic books for Japanese studies 111,779 348,627 460,406
Indexes, catalogues, etc. of literature related to Japanese studies 3,272 8,828 12,100


Items Number of titles Current subscriptions
Total 8,624 1,567
Japanese periodicals 7,145 1,354
Foreign periodicals 1,479 213

Audio-Visual Materials

Items Number of items Contents
DVDs 4,283 Japanese movies, Kabuki performances etc.
Videotapes 3,454 Japanese movies, traditional performing arts, etc.
CD-ROMs 357 Reference materials such as dictionaries
CDs 2,076 Traditional performing arts, etc.
LDs 48 Animations, etc.
LPs 7,712 Rōkyoku, etc.
Cassette tapes 80 Performing arts (Folk songs, enka), etc.
Antique photographs 5,639 Photographs taken in the late-Edo and early-Meiji era as souvenirs
Glass photographs 4,848 Glass photographic plates
Negatives of Japanese photographs 162,000 Negatives of Japanese photographs taken by ASANO Kiichi, TAKAHASHI Yoshiyuki and OKAZAKI Ayaakira


Western Books on Japan

Category Number Contents
Chirimen-bon (Crepe-paper Books) 77 items Database of high-resolution images of chirimen-bon (Japanese folktales written in other languages, printed on Japanese washi paper made for export in the Meiji and Taishō eras), held at Nichibunken.
Rare Books and Maps on Japan in European Languages 220 items Database of rare books and maps related to Japan in European languages (1550-1860s) in the Nichibunken Library. In addition to graphic images of all pages of these rare books, the database contains bibliographic information, tables of contents of the books, and captions for the illustrations.
Pre-1900 Western-language Publications
Related to Japan
1,057 items Digitization of a three-volume, indexed catalogue of pre-1900 published works in Western languages in the Nichibunken collection that contain material about Japan.

Overseas Images of Japan, Early Photographs

Category Number Contents
Overseas Images of Japan 56,913 items Nichibunken’s collection of photographs, illustrations, and other images (with source information) extracted from Japan-related publications from around the world.
Early Photographs 5,431 items Hand-colored photographs (with source information) of Japan from the late Edo period and the beginning of the Meiji era in the Nichibunken collection.

Strange Phenomena and Yōkai(Ghosts, Monsters, Spirits)Related Materials

Category Number Contents
Illustrations of Strange Phenomena and Yōkai (Ghosts, Monsters, Spirits) 27 items High-resolution digital images of picture scrolls depicting yōkai monsters in the Nichibunken collection.
Paintings of Strange Phenomena and Yōkai (Ghosts, Monsters, Spirits) 3,767 items Database of images of a wide variety of strange phenomena and yōkai depicted in paintings.
Folktales of Strange Phenomena and Yōkai (Ghosts, Monsters, Spirits) 35,826 items Bibliographic information on yōkai and mysterious phenomena reported in folklore studies and other fields research.
Namazu-e Collection 86 items Collections of namazu-e (catfish prints) owned by Nichibunken. Namazu-e are color prints depicting the myth of giant catfish living underground as the cause of earthquakes.

Ukiyo-e, Emakimono, Art

Category Number Contents
Ukiyo-e Geijutsu 169 items This database of Ukiyo-e geijutsu, the journal of the International Ukiyo-e Society (formerly the Japan Ukiyo-e Society), has been constructed for ukiyo-e specialists and art lovers around the world. It was produced through collaboration between the Society and Nichibunken. In accordance with an agreement between Nichibunken and the International Ukiyo-e Society, the database displays back issues with a three-year moving wall.
Emakimono (Picture Scrolls) 28 items Database of high-resolution digital images of emakimono (picture scrolls) held at Nichibunken.
Enpon (Ukiyo-e Shunga) 837 items Database of basic bibliographic data and digitized high resolution images of Edo period enpon (erotic ukiyo-e books) in the Nichibunken collection.
Dainichi Buddha in Emaki Scrolls 150 items Database of the Otake Dainichi Nyorai engi emaki, a series of three emaki scrolls preserved at the Kōtakuji Shōzen’in temple (Yamagata prefecture), the headquarters and training center of the Haguro Shugendō sect, depicting the provenance of the Otake Dainichi Hall at the same temple. Otake is the name of a woman considered to be an incarnation of the Dainichi (Sk. Mahavairocana) Buddha. This database, also including Otake-related resources in the temple’s collection, was created with the full support of Shōzen’in.
Japanese Art Overseas 8,673 items Contains images of and original source information on works of Japanese art (paintings, woodblock prints, netsuke, ceramics, lacquerware, sculpture, metalwork, etc.) in the collections of the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts and the State Hermitage Museum in Russia, the Ferenc Hopp Museum of East Asian Arts in Hungary, as well as other museums in Hungary and the Czech Republic.
Emaki Heiji Monogatari (Tale of Heiji)
Scroll Digital Restoration
1 item Digital reproduction of the emaki version of the Heiji monogatari chapter “Rokuhara kassen no maki” (Scroll of the Rokuhara Battle), based on the Tokyo National Museum-owned hakubyō (painting drawn only with ink lines) copy of the Emaki Heiji monogatari. The colors are based on the color coding inscribed on the copy and those used in extant warrior prints (musha-e).
in the Library of Congress Collection
2,741 items Images of ukiyo-e prints in the Library of Congress Collection in the United States, along with commentaries on the prints.
Genji Monogatari (1654 Version)
in the Library of Congress Collection
60 items Full image data of the Shōō-ban Genji monogatari, a 1654 version of the illustrated Tale of Genji (texts: 54 volumes, commentaries: 6 volumes) in the collection of the Library of Congress in the United States.
Nara Ehon
in the Library of Congress Collection
4 items Images of the Nara ehon (“Nara picture books”) in the Library of Congress Collection in the United States, along with commentaries.

Pictorial and Biographical Works

Category Number Contents
Early Modern Illustrated Encyclopedias 1,484 items A database of illustrated encyclopedias published in early modern Japan. Includes Kinmōzui (1666) and other “Kinmōzui”-type encylopedias as well as books with pictorial and diagramed information. Although described as “early modern,” this database covers the period up to and including the early Meiji era.
Ukiyo-e Prints of Miracles of Kannon 100 items A series of ukiyo-e prints depicting Kannon pilgrimage sites around the country were produced about 160 years ago and became popular. This database presents the vivid images from that series while at the same time transcribing the text that accompanies the images. This database also contains commentaries on each of pilgrimage sites, costumes worn by pilgrims, and the like.
Folklore Illustrations 447 items High resolution images of all pages of the ezōshi, or illustrated story books from the Edo period, in the Nichibunken collection.
Illustrations of Historic Places in Kyoto 24 items Database of digitized high-resolution images of Edo-period and Meiji-era meisho zue illustrated guidebooks of famous places in Kyoto held at Nichibunken. The database has been constructed to help researchers study the lifestyles and customs of old Kyoto through such guidebooks.
Heian Jinbutsu Shi (Who’s Who in Old Kyoto) 927 pages Images, complete text, and index to the Heian jinbutsu shi who’s who (collection of Nichibunken) published between 1768 and 1867.
Tanzaku, or Poems
by Noteworthy Kyoto Personages
947 items Images of rectangular poem cards (tanzaku) with verses brushed by the figures who appear in the Heian jinbutsu shi (held at Nichibunken), text versions of the verses and source data.
Kyoto Festivals and Customs 103 items Paintings on silk by Nakajima Sōyō and explanatory texts by Kyoto scholar Ema Tsutomu from Miyako nenjū gyōji gajō (1928; owned by Nichibunken), a picture album depicting annual festivals and customs of Kyoto.

Maps, GIS

Category Number Contents
GIS Archaeology 4,701 items GIS archaeology is a new field of archaeology using GIS (Geographical Information System) software to promote research of spatial information. This database includes information on the Heian-kyō Kyoto ruins, earthquake ruins, and the Saga-Yayoi ruins.(under construction)
Nichibunken Map Collection 979 items Contains information on the whereabouts of old maps, mainly urban maps made in early modern Japan. Images attached for maps in the Nichibunken collection.
Old Maps of Nagasaki 141 items Nichibunken’s database of 221 color photographs from among the old Nagasaki maps in the collection of the Nagasaki Municipal Museum, as well as a database of relevant information from the Nagasaki Shiritsu Hakubutsukan shiryō mokuroku: Tosho, chizu, shashin shiryō hen, (Catalogue of Materials in the Nagasaki Municipal Museum: Books, Maps, and Photographs), edited by the Museum.
Maps drawn by Mori Kōan 383 items This database collects maps drawn by Mori Kōan, a draftsman and map-maker active in the mid-Edo period. It allows viewing of some of the images published in the Zōho kaitei Mori Kōan no egaita chizu (Maps Drawn by Mori Kōan), published in the Nichibunken Japanese Studies Series (No. 54).


Category Number Contents
Kojiruien Full Text 12,416 pages Kojiruien is an exhaustive encyclopedia of Japanese culture of over 67,000 pages and more than 40,000 entries, launched as a national project by the Meiji government and published in the Meiji and Taishō eras. In collaboration with the National Institute of Japanese Literature and other organizations, Nichibunken has converted [been converting] the entire text of the Kojiruien into a database and been making it available in stages to the public.
Kojiruien Page Search System 51 items To make the Kojiruien more easily and widely available to Japan specialists in and outside Japan, this database has an easy-to-use search function, based on the 51-volume edition of the Kojiruien (bound in Western-book format) published in the Taishō era (1912–1926).

Records and Accounts

Category Number Contents
Letters Addressed to Inoue Tetsujirō 140 items Database containing letters addressed to philosopher Inoue Tetsujirō (1856-1944) from prominent figures in academia and other members of intellectual elite over the six decades from 1882 to 1941.
Overseas Japanese-language Newspapers 3,328 items Plans are under way to scan overseas Japanese-language newspapers for a digital file and then create a database with full text search capability. Currently available at Nichibunken are the prewar issues of Japanese-language newspapers published in Brazil, home to the largest community of Japanese immigrants in the world. Step by step the scope of the database will be broadened to include prewar newspapers published in other countries of South America, as well as North America and Hawai‘i.
Kinsei Kijinden
(Prominent Figures of Our Times)
97 items Digitized full text and illustrations of the Kinsei kijinden (parts 1 and 2, published in the 1790s),a collection of biographies of Edo-period figures(artists,poets,etc.).Chinese and kana characters in the old form have been replaced with present-day equivalents. Characters not in the JIS Code have been replaced with JIS Code characters having the same meaning and pronunciation.
Illustrated Record of the Iwakura
Embassy 1871-73
317 items The illustrations and the text that refers to them in the Bei-Ō kairan jikki (The Iwakura Embassy), compiled by Kume Kunitake and published in 1878.
Heian-Period Chronicles (Old
Diaries, Historical Documents)
11,784 items Database in kundoku (“Japanese” or explanatory reading) of the full texts of diaries and other old records from the middle part of the Heian period. Now available (as of February 2017) are the following: Shōyūki (diary of Fujiwara no Sanesuke, 16 parts; now available are parts 1-5, which covers the period 977 to 1011, some portions lost); Gonki (diary of Fujiwara no Yukinari); Midō Kanpakuki (diary of Fujiwara no Michinaga); Sakeiki (diary of Minamoto no Tsuneyori. 10 parts; now available are parts 1-4, which covers the period 1009 to 1025, some portions lost); Shunki (diary of Fujiwara no Sukefusa). This is scheduled to be followed by parts 6-16 of the Shōyūki and parts 5-10 of the Sakeiki. A digital reproduction of the Saikyūshō, a hand-written copy of the Heian book of rites Saikyūki, which contains numerous fragments of ancient records such as the Daigo tennō gyoki, Rihō ōki, and Kyūreki, is currently available.
Medieval Zen Texts 1,290 items The purpose of this database is to make available to the public complete digitalized text for Zen-related works of the medieval era. Currently it provides the full text of the priest Gidō Shūshin’s (1325–1388) Kūge rōshi nichiyō kufū ryakushū, a work in the Nichibunken collection consisting of excerpts from Gidō’s diary covering the period 64 years from his birth to death. The database will gradually be expanded mainly with quotations and poetry collections that have not been transcribed and published.
Korean Photo Picture Postcards 6,500 items Picture postcards of Korea published 1900-1940 (collection of Yamamoto Shunsuke, Kyoto; former researcher at the Koryo Museum of Art, Kyoto) are presented in digital format together with publication data and other details.
Civil Court Rulings Files 549,101 items Images of all the texts of the court rulings in civil cases from 1868 to 1890 (Meiji 1 to 23).

Waka, Renga, Haikai

Category Number Contents
Haikai 25,652 items The major haikai collections, including those of Bashō and Buson. This material, collected over many years by Seta Katsuhiro of the Nara National College of Technology, was donated to Nichibunken in support of Japanese studies.
Renga 197,228 items Contains all renga collections composed before the Eiroku era (up until the death of renga poet Sōyō in 1563) and the major works composed from the Eiroku era until the Bakumatsu period. This material, collected over many years by Professor Seta Katsuhiro of the Nara National College of Technology, has been donated to Nichibunken in support of Japanese studies.
Renga Association Examples - Database of renga-associated vocabulary, created by extracting, from the verses recorded in Nichibunken’s renga database, the lexical patterns that appear in the preceding stanza (maeku) and the linking stanza (tsukeku) that is added to it. Users of this database can search these lexical patterns either using the maeku/tsukeku or verse collection title. The database is linked a digitized version of “Rensō goi yōrei jiten” (Dictionary of Usage of Associated Vocabulary) included in Yamada Shōji and Iwai Shigeki, eds., Renga no hassō rensō goi yōrei jiten to sono nettowāku kaiseki,the Nichibunken Japanese Studies Series (No. 38).
Waka 190,423 items Contains all twenty-one imperial anthologies, including Man'yōshū, and major private waka collections such as Fuboku wakashū. This material, collected by Seta Katsuhiro over many years, was donated to Nichibunken in support of Japanese studies.

Bibliographic Databases

Category Number Contents
Bibliography of Family History and Historical Demography 8,154 items on Family History,
1,603 items on Historical Demography
Bibliographic information on studies in the areas of family history and historical demography in Japan.
Catalogue of the Research Center
for the History of Sino-Japanese Relations
27,805 items Catalogue information for the former collection of the Sino-Japanese Historical Research Center, divided into “Western-language works,” “Chinese-language works,” “Japanese-language works,” and “Maps.”

Medical History-related Materials

Category Number Contents
Noma Archives (Rare European Medical Books) 73 items Database of the Noma Collection, including sixteenth-century books on human anatomy, donated to Nichibunken by the Noma Research Archives for Science and Medicine (closed in 2003).
Sōda Archives: Pictorial and
Miscellaneous Materials
1,104 items Mainly illustrations from the Sōda Archives of books and illustrations relating to histories of medicine and pharmacy collected by the late Sōda Hajime (1921-1996), an authority on the history of medicine.

Other Search Engines / Databases

Category Number Contents
Kigo Keyword Search 35,811 items This database, which contains more than 35,000 kigo (seasonal words) entries, has been developed as a search tool for Nichibunken’s waka, renga, and haikai databases. It can be used separately to search for kigo words.
Time-Oriented Information System - Nichibunken has developed a system for searching and retrieving information on maps and historical figures on a chronological axis. The database may be accessed from the Internet.
Nichibunken Library Total Holdings: 566,293
Books and Magazines: 324,069
Bibliographic information on books and periodicals from around the world, held at Nichibunken, providing an almost complete picture of written materials and images in the Nichibunken collection.
Nichibunken Database Cross
Reference Search
- This search engine is designed for cross reference search of all Nichibunken’s Web pages, and is able to search and retrieve applicable data simultaneously. At the present stage this information retrieval system is valid only for Nichibunken Web pages; in the near future the cross reference system will expand through linkage to the sites of other institutions.
Overseas Japanese Studies
1,655 items Information on Japanese studies institutions around the world.
Z39.50 - Z39.50 is an international standard for communication between inter-linked library systems. Nichibunken’s Z39.50 is an enlarged version that not only searches bibliographic data but provides access to all the databases of the Nichibunken website.

Databases for Onsite Use Only

Category Number Contents
WebGIS Japanese Maps 1 item Current prefectural maps for online viewing.
Okazaki Ayaakira’s Garden Photographs 14,261 items Provides digital images of garden photographs in the collection of Nichibunken taken by Okazaki Ayaakira, landscape gardener, dendrologist and professor emeritus of Kyoto University, as well as their basic data (region, location, and data of the photo).
Overseas Japanese Newspapers 28,116 items Digital data of Japanese newspapers published outside of Japan. Ten newspapers published in San Francisco, Argentina, and Brazil are now available in digital format.
High-definition Geographical Information - High-resolution images including early maps, as well as maps prepared by the Geographical Survey Institute, are available to researchers through the internal Nichibunken network.
Japanese Art Overseas 13,705 items Contains images of and original source information on works of Japanese art (paintings, woodblock prints, netsuke, ceramics, lacquerware, sculpture, metalwork, etc.) in the collections of the British Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum in the UK, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the USA, as well as numerous other museums in North America and Europe.
CD-ROM Server system - Introduced in 1998, this system can be used to search the indexes to magazines and articles, headlines in the Asahi shinbun newspaper, and other resources.
Catalog of Old Photograph Collection 888 items This catalog lists the images and bibliographic information for hand-colored photographs in the Nichibunken collection from the late Edo period through the early Meiji era.
Television Commercials 4,411 items Database of TV commercial films produced between 1961 and 1997 that won ACC (All Japan Radio & Television Commercial Confederation) awards.
Collected Paintings of Night Parade Demons 67 items Database of paintings of hyakki yakō (night parade of demons) collected for research use as part of the “Database of Strange Phenomena and Yōkai Culture Resources Project” conducted at Nichibunken.
Histrical Laws 14,582 items Full text data and character data for the ofuregaki laws and regulations of the Edo bakufu.

Team Research Project Members (As of May 1, 2017)

Category Number Contents
Research Members 583 Members for the sixteen team research projects.

Use of Nichibunken by Outside Researchers (2017)

Library Use

Category Number
Attendance 23,073
Books Borrowed 8,284
Book Searches 1,223
Requests for Photocopies to Other Institutions 1,926
Requests for Photocopies from Other Institutions 1,793
Interlibrary Loan Requests to Other Institutions 1,172
Interlibrary Loan Requests from Other Institutions 809

Lectures, Etc.

Category Annual Occurrences Attendance
Public Lectures 2 1,021
Special Public Lectures 2 1,016
Nichibunken Forums 11 1,837

Nichibunken Open Day


Nichibunken Web Site

Number of visitors:2,241,980