Viewing Archives of the Imperial House Library

The Imperial House Library holds classical and ancient archives, which have predominantly been passed down by members of the Imperial Family and members of the Imperial Court.

People wishing to view classical and ancient archives of the Imperial House Library are required to make an inquiry as detailed below.

  • Contact
    • The Preservation and Circulation Section of Classical/Ancient Archives, Archives Division, Archives and Mausolea Department, The Imperial Household Agency
    • 1-1 Chiyoda, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 100-8111, Japan
    • TEL: +81(0)3-3213-1111 (Ext. 3439)
    • Phone operating hours: 9:00 to 17:00 except on Saturdays, Sundays, holidays designated by national holiday’s law, and Year-end and New Year holidays (December 29 - January 3)
  • Qualifications for use of our archives
    • No particular qualifications are required.
  • How to use our archives
    • Researching begins with our catalog. Once you have found the archives you need, you can request to view them.

    • Archives and Mausolea Department Catalog and Image Disclosure System
      (The new browser window opens. This website is only available in Japanese.)

    • Please make an official viewing request so that it will arrive within 10 days prior to the date you desire to view the archives.
    • We will send you a permit after we receive your order. You will be required to present it on the day of your visit.
    • We limit the number of visitors per day. We are afraid that there are some cases where you will not be able to come on your preferred date.

    • There are two ways.
    • 1. If you would like to make a request by post, you can use any format you like for this request.
    • * Please send it to the above-mentioned point of contact.

      * Necessary items to include in your request

      • (1)Full name; (2) Address; (3) Telephone number; (4) List of each visitor’s name (up to 3 people); (5) Preferred viewing date (your first and second choices); (6) Title of the archives ; and (7) Call number of the archives.

      * Please make a request addressed to Director of the Archives and Mausolea Department.

      * You can use this format.

    • 2. If you would like to use the application form below to make a request, please fill in requirement of it.
    •   閲覧申請 入力フォーム
        (The new browser window opens.)

  • Information about viewing
    • 1. Limitation
      • You can view up to 12 titles in our catalog or 60 volumes in total per day.
      • If you make a request for the title including more than 60 volumes, you are required to view it within the limits.
    • 2. Viewing hours
      • 9:15-16:30 (The circulation desk is closed from 12:00 to 13:00 and from 16:00 to 16:30.)
    • 3. Access
      • Archives and Mausolea Department Building is located in the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace. All visitors are requested to use public transportation and enter through 北桔橋門(Kitahanebashi-mon Gate)because we have no parking lot. If you are a disabled visitor, please contact us so we can assist you.
    • 4. Reading Room
      • On the First floor of Archives and Mausolea Department Building.
    • 5. Closing
      • Saturdays and Sundays
      • Every 2nd and 4th Friday
      • Holidays designated by national holiday’s law
      • Year-end and New Year holidays (December 20 - January 10)
      • Days when the Reading Room is not available due to official ceremonies at the Imperial Palace.
    • 6. Other
      • Please note that there is some limitation regarding using our archives so that we can preserve them as cultural properties.
  • Copies
    • People wishing to make copies of our archives are required to make an inquiry to the above-mentioned point of contact.