• 日本
  • Nippon or Nihon
Anthem: Kimigayo "君が代"
"His Imperial Majesty's Reign"[3][4]
Government Seal of Japan
Seal of the Office of the Prime Minister and the Government of Japan
Go-Shichi no Kiri
Projection of Asia with Japan's Area coloured green
Japanese territory in dark green; claimed, but uncontrolled land shown in light green
and largest city
35°41′N 139°46′E / 35°41′N 139°46′E / 35.683; 139.767
National languageJapanese
Ethnic groups
GovernmentUnitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy
• Emperor
Shinzō Abe
Tadamori Oshima
Akiko Santō
Naoto Ōtani
LegislatureNational Diet
House of Councillors
House of Representatives
February 11, 660 BC[8]
November 29, 1890
May 3, 1947
April 28, 1952
• Total
377,973[9] km2 (145,936 sq mi)[10] (61st)
• Water (%)
• January 2019 census
126,317,000[11] (11th)
• Density
334/km2 (865.1/sq mi) (41st)
GDP (PPP)2019 estimate
• Total
Increase $5.747 trillion[12] (4th)
• Per capita
Increase $45,546[12] (31st)
GDP (nominal)2019 estimate
• Total
Increase $5.154 trillion[12] (3rd)
• Per capita
Increase $40,847[12] (26th)
Gini (2011)37.9[13]
medium · 76th
HDI (2017)Increase 0.909[14]
very high · 19th
CurrencyYen (¥) / En (JPY)
Time zoneUTC+09:00 (JST)
Date format
  • yyyy-mm-dd
  • yyyy年m月d日
  • Era yy年m月d日 (CE−2018)
Mains electricity100 V–50 and 60 Hz
Driving sideleft
Calling code+81
ISO 3166 codeJP
Internet TLDwww.japan.go.jp
Japanese name

Japan (Japanese: 日本, Nippon [ɲippoꜜɴ] (About this soundlisten) or Nihon [ɲihoꜜɴ] (About this soundlisten); formally 日本国, About this soundNippon-koku or Nihon-koku, lit. 'State of Japan') is an island country in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies off the eastern coast of the Asian continent and stretches from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and the Philippine Sea in the south.

The kanji that make up Japan's name mean 'sun origin', and it is often called the "Land of the Rising Sun". Japan is the world's 4th largest island country and encompasses about 6,852 islands. The stratovolcanic archipelago has five main islands: Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, Shikoku and Okinawa which make up about 97% percent of Japan's land area.[15] The country is divided into 47 prefectures and unofficially into eight regions, with Hokkaido being the northernmost prefecture and Okinawa being the southernmost prefecture. Japan is the 2nd most populous island country. The population of approximately 126 million is the world's eleventh largest, of which 98.5% are ethnic Japanese. 90.7% of people live in cities, while 9.3% live in the countryside.[16] About 13.8 million people live in Tokyo,[17] the capital of Japan. The Greater Tokyo Area is the most populous metropolitan area in the world with over 38 million people.[18]

Archaeological research indicates that Japan was inhabited as early as the Upper Paleolithic period. The first written mention of Japan is in Chinese history texts from the 1st century AD. Influence from other regions, mainly China, followed by periods of isolation, particularly from Western Europe, has characterized Japan's history.

From the 12th century until 1868, Japan was ruled in the name of the Emperor by successive feudal military shōguns. Japan entered into a long period of isolation in the early 17th century, which was ended in 1853 when a United States fleet pressured Japan to open to the West. After nearly two decades of internal conflict and insurrection, the Imperial Court regained its political power in 1868 through the help of several clans from Chōshū and Satsuma – and the Empire of Japan was established. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, victories in the First Sino-Japanese War, the Russo-Japanese War and World War I allowed Japan to expand its empire during a period of increasing militarism. The Second Sino-Japanese War of 1937 expanded into part of World War II in 1941, which came to an end in 1945 following the Japanese surrender. Since adopting its revised constitution on May 3, 1947, during the occupation led by SCAP, the sovereign state of Japan has maintained a unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy with an Emperor and an elected legislature called the National Diet.

Japan is a member of the ASEAN Plus mechanism, UN, the OECD, the G7, the G8, and the G20, and is considered a great power.[19][20][21] Its economy is the world's third-largest by nominal GDP and the fourth-largest by purchasing power parity. It is also the world's fourth-largest exporter and fourth-largest importer.

Japan benefits from a highly skilled and educated workforce; it has among the world's largest proportion of citizens holding a tertiary education degree.[22] Although it has officially renounced its right to declare war, Japan maintains a modern military with the world's eighth-largest military budget,[23] used for self-defense and peacekeeping roles; it ranked as the world's fourth-most powerful military in 2015.[24] Japan is a highly developed country with a very high standard of living and Human Development Index. Its population enjoys one of the highest life expectancy and the third lowest infant mortality rate in the world[25][26], but is experiencing issues due to an aging population and low birthrate. As of 2019, Japanese citizens had visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 189 countries and territories, ranking the Japanese passport 1st in the world, tied with Singapore.[27]


The Japanese word for Japan is 日本, which is pronounced Nihon or Nippon and literally means "the origin of the sun". The character nichi () means "sun" or "day"; hon () means "base" or "origin".[28] The compound therefore means "origin of the sun" and is the source of the popular Western epithet "Land of the Rising Sun".[29]

The earliest record of the name Nihon appears in the Chinese historical records of the Tang dynasty, the Old Book of Tang. At the end of the seventh century, a delegation from Japan requested that Nihon be used as the name of their country. This name may have its origin in a letter sent in 607 and recorded in the official history of the Sui dynasty. Prince Shōtoku, the Regent of Japan, sent a mission to China with a letter in which he called himself "the Emperor of the Land where the Sun rises" (日出處天子). The message said: "Here, I, the emperor of the country where the sun rises, send a letter to the emperor of the country where the sunsets. How are you[?]".[30]

The "King of Na gold seal", said to have been granted to Na king of Wa (Japan) by Emperor Guangwu of Han in 57 CE. The seal reads "漢委奴國王". Tokyo National Museum

Prior to the adoption of Nihon, other terms such as Yamato (大和, or "Great Wa") and Wakoku (倭国) were used. The term Wa () is a homophone of Wo (pronounced "Wa" by the Japanese), which has been used by the Chinese as a designation for the Japanese as early as the third century Three Kingdoms period. Another form of Wa (), Wei in Chinese) was used for an early state in Japan called Nakoku during the Han dynasty.[31] However, the Japanese disliked some connotation of Wa (which has been associated in China with concepts like "dwarf" or "pygmy"), and it was therefore replaced with the substitute character Wa (), meaning "togetherness, harmony".[30][32]

The English word Japan possibly derives from the historical Chinese pronunciation of 日本. Japan was recorded by Marco Polo as Cipangu.[33] In modern Shanghainese, a Wu dialect, the pronunciation of characters 日本 Japan is Zeppen [zəʔpən]. The old Malay word for Japan, Japun or Japang, was borrowed from a southern coastal Chinese dialect, probably Fukienese or Ningpo[34] – and this Malay word was encountered by Portuguese traders in Southeast Asia in the 16th century.[35] These Early Portuguese traders then brought the word to Europe.[36] The first record of this name in English is in a book published in 1577 and spelled Giapan, in a translation of a 1565 letter written by a Portuguese Jesuit Luís Fróis.[37][38]

From the Meiji Restoration until the end of World War II, the full title of Japan was Dai Nippon Teikoku (大日本帝國), meaning "the Empire of Great Japan".[39] Today, the name Nihon-koku/Nippon-koku (日本国) is used as a formal modern-day equivalent with the meaning of "the State of Japan". Countries like Japan whose long form does not contain a descriptive designation are generally given a name appended by the character koku (), meaning "country", "nation" or "state".

Other Languages
Acèh: Jeupun
Адыгэбзэ: Япон
адыгабзэ: Японие
Afrikaans: Japan
Akan: Japan
Alemannisch: Japan
አማርኛ: ጃፓን
Ænglisc: Iapan
Аҧсшәа: Иапониа
العربية: اليابان
aragonés: Chapón
ܐܪܡܝܐ: ܝܦܢ
armãneashti: Japonia
arpetan: J·apon
অসমীয়া: জাপান
asturianu: Xapón
Atikamekw: Japan
Avañe'ẽ: Hapõ
авар: Япония
Aymar aru: Nihun
azərbaycanca: Yaponiya
تۆرکجه: ژاپون
Bali: Jepang
bamanankan: Japan
বাংলা: জাপান
Banjar: Japang
Bân-lâm-gú: Ji̍t-pún
Basa Banyumasan: Jepang
башҡортса: Япония
беларуская: Японія
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Японія
भोजपुरी: जापान
Bikol Central: Hapon
Bislama: Japan
български: Япония
Boarisch: Japan
བོད་ཡིག: ཉི་ཧོང་།
bosanski: Japan
brezhoneg: Japan
буряад: Япон Улас
català: Japó
Чӑвашла: Япони
Cebuano: Hapon
čeština: Japonsko
Chamoru: Chapan
Chavacano de Zamboanga: Japón
Chi-Chewa: Japan
chiShona: Japan
chiTumbuka: Japan
corsu: Giapponu
Cymraeg: Japan
dansk: Japan
davvisámegiella: Jáhpan
Deitsch: Japan
Deutsch: Japan
ދިވެހިބަސް: ޖަޕާނު
dolnoserbski: Japańska
डोटेली: जापान
ཇོང་ཁ: ཇ་པཱན
eesti: Jaapan
Ελληνικά: Ιαπωνία
emiliàn e rumagnòl: Giapòṅ
español: Japón
Esperanto: Japanio
estremeñu: Japón
euskara: Japonia
eʋegbe: Japan
فارسی: ژاپن
Fiji Hindi: Japan
føroyskt: Japan
français: Japon
Frysk: Japan
Fulfulde: Japan
furlan: Gjapon
Gaeilge: An tSeapáin
Gagauz: Yaponiya
Gàidhlig: An Iapan
galego: Xapón
ГӀалгӀай: Япони
贛語: 日本
Gĩkũyũ: Japan
گیلکی: ژاپؤن
ગુજરાતી: જાપાન
𐌲𐌿𐍄𐌹𐍃𐌺: 𐌾𐌰𐍀𐌰𐌽
गोंयची कोंकणी / Gõychi Konknni: जपान
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Ngi̍t-pún
한국어: 일본
Hausa: Japan
Hawaiʻi: Iāpana
հայերեն: Ճապոնիա
Արեւմտահայերէն: Ճափոն
हिन्दी: जापान
hornjoserbsce: Japanska
hrvatski: Japan
Bahasa Hulontalo: Japangi
Ido: Japonia
Igbo: Japan
Ilokano: Hapon
বিষ্ণুপ্রিয়া মণিপুরী: জাপান
Bahasa Indonesia: Jepang
interlingua: Japon
Interlingue: Japan
ᐃᓄᒃᑎᑐᑦ/inuktitut: ᓃᑉᐊᓐ
Iñupiak: Japan
Ирон: Япон
isiXhosa: IJapani
isiZulu: IJaphani
íslenska: Japan
italiano: Giappone
עברית: יפן
Jawa: Jepang
Kabɩyɛ: Sapɔŋ
kalaallisut: Japani
ಕನ್ನಡ: ಜಪಾನ್
Kapampangan: Hapon
къарачай-малкъар: Япония
ქართული: იაპონია
कॉशुर / کٲشُر: Japan
kaszëbsczi: Japòńskô
қазақша: Жапония
kernowek: Nihon
Kinyarwanda: Ubuyapani
Kirundi: Yapon
Kiswahili: Japani
коми: Япония
Kongo: Japan
Kreyòl ayisyen: Japon
kurdî: Japon
Кыргызча: Япония
кырык мары: Япони
Ladino: Japon
лакку: Япония
لۊری شومالی: جاپوݩ
latgaļu: Japoneja
Latina: Iaponia
latviešu: Japāna
Lëtzebuergesch: Japan
лезги: Япония
lietuvių: Japonija
Ligure: Giappon
Limburgs: Japan
lingála: Zapɔ́
Lingua Franca Nova: Nion
Livvinkarjala: Japounii
la .lojban.: pongu'e
Luganda: Japan
lumbaart: Giapun
magyar: Japán
मैथिली: जापान
македонски: Јапонија
Malagasy: Japana
മലയാളം: ജപ്പാൻ
Malti: Ġappun
Māori: Nipono
मराठी: जपान
მარგალური: იაპონია
مصرى: اليابان
مازِرونی: جاپون
Bahasa Melayu: Jepun
Minangkabau: Japang
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Nĭk-buōng
Mirandés: Japon
мокшень: Японмастор
монгол: Япон
မြန်မာဘာသာ: ဂျပန်နိုင်ငံ
Nāhuatl: Xapon
Dorerin Naoero: Djapan
Na Vosa Vakaviti: Japani
Nederlands: Japan
Nedersaksies: Japan
Nēhiyawēwin / ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐍᐏᐣ: ᔭᐊᐸᐊᐣ
नेपाली: जापान
नेपाल भाषा: जापान
日本語: 日本
Napulitano: Giappone
нохчийн: Япон
Nordfriisk: Jaapan
Norfuk / Pitkern: Japan
norsk: Japan
norsk nynorsk: Japan
Nouormand: Japon
Novial: Japan
occitan: Japon
олык марий: Японий
ଓଡ଼ିଆ: ଜାପାନ
Oromoo: Jaappaan
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Yaponiya
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਜਪਾਨ
पालि: जापान
Pälzisch: Japan
Pangasinan: Hapon
پنجابی: جپان
Papiamentu: Hapon
پښتو: جاپان
Patois: Japan
Перем Коми: Ниппон
ភាសាខ្មែរ: ជប៉ុន
Picard: Japon
Piemontèis: Giapon
Tok Pisin: Siapan
Plattdüütsch: Japan
polski: Japonia
Ποντιακά: Ιαπωνία
português: Japão
Qaraqalpaqsha: Yaponiya
qırımtatarca: Yaponiya
reo tahiti: Tāpōnē
Ripoarisch: Japan
română: Japonia
romani čhib: Japan
rumantsch: Giapun
Runa Simi: Nihun
русиньскый: Японія
русский: Япония
саха тыла: Дьоппуон
ᱥᱟᱱᱛᱟᱲᱤ: ᱡᱟᱯᱟᱱ
Gagana Samoa: Iapani
संस्कृतम्: जपान्
Sängö: Zapöo
sardu: Giappone
Scots: Japan
Seeltersk: Japan
Sesotho: Japane
Sesotho sa Leboa: Japane
Setswana: Japan
shqip: Japonia
sicilianu: Giappuni
සිංහල: ජපානය
Simple English: Japan
سنڌي: جاپان
SiSwati: IJaphani
slovenčina: Japonsko
slovenščina: Japonska
словѣньскъ / ⰔⰎⰑⰂⰡⰐⰠⰔⰍⰟ: Ꙗпѡнїꙗ
ślůnski: Japůńijo
Soomaaliga: Jabaan
کوردی: ژاپۆن
Sranantongo: Japan
српски / srpski: Јапан
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Japan
ၽႃႇသႃႇတႆး : မိူင်းၵျပၢၼ်ႇ
Sunda: Jepang
suomi: Japani
svenska: Japan
Tagalog: Hapon
தமிழ்: யப்பான்
Taqbaylit: Yapan
tarandíne: Giappone
татарча/tatarça: Япония
తెలుగు: జపాన్
tetun: Japaun
ትግርኛ: ጃፓን
тоҷикӣ: Ҷопон
lea faka-Tonga: Siapani
Tsetsêhestâhese: Japan
Tshivenda: Japan
ತುಳು: ಜಪಾನ್
Türkçe: Japonya
Türkmençe: Ýaponiýa
Twi: Yapan
тыва дыл: Япония
Thuɔŋjäŋ: Japan
удмурт: Япония
ᨅᨔ ᨕᨘᨁᨗ: Jepang
українська: Японія
اردو: جاپان
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: ياپونىيە
Vahcuengh: Nditbonj
vèneto: Giapòn
vepsän kel’: Japonii
Tiếng Việt: Nhật Bản
Volapük: Yapän
Võro: Jaapan
walon: Djapon
文言: 日本
West-Vlams: Japan
Winaray: Hapon
Wolof: Sapoŋ
吴语: 日本
Xitsonga: Japani
ייִדיש: יאפאן
Yorùbá: Japan
粵語: 日本
Zazaki: Japonya
Zeêuws: Japan
žemaitėška: Japuonėjė
中文: 日本