Saga Prefecture

Saga Prefecture

Japanese transcription(s)
 • Japanese佐賀県
 • RōmajiSaga-ken
Flag of Saga Prefecture
Official logo of Saga Prefecture
Location of Saga Prefecture
 • GovernorYoshinori Yamaguchi
 • Total2,439.58 km2 (941.93 sq mi)
Area rank42nd
(December 1, 2013)
 • Total839,458
 • Rank42nd
 • Density344.10/km2 (891.2/sq mi)
ISO 3166 codeJP-41
FlowerCamphor blossom (Cinnamomum camphora)
TreeCamphor tree (Cinnamomum camphora)
The seal of Saga Prefecture
The flag of Saga Prefecture

Saga Prefecture (佐賀県, Saga-ken) is a prefecture in the northwest part of the island of Kyushu, Japan.[1] It touches both the Sea of Japan and the Ariake Sea. The western part of the prefecture is a region famous for producing ceramics and porcelain, particularly the towns of Karatsu, Imari, and Arita. The capital is the city of Saga.[1]


A reconstruction of a Yayoi period building at the Yoshinogari site

-In ancient times, the area composed by Nagasaki Prefecture and Saga Prefecture was called Hizen Province.[2] The current name dates from the Meiji Restoration. Rice farming culture has prospered here since ancient times, and vestiges can be seen at the ruins of Nabatake in Karatsu and the Yoshinogari site in Yoshinogari.

Feudal period

Saga Castle (Shachi gate)

-From the Kamakura period to the Muromachi period, it is thought that over 100 feudal clans existed. Also exerting great influence during this time was a samurai clan operating along the Genkai Sea called the Matsuratō. Upon entering the Sengoku period, the Ryūzōji clan expanded their control to include all of Hizen and Chikugo Provinces, and part of Higo and Chikuzen Provinces. After the death of daimyō Takanobu Ryūzōji, Naoshige Nabeshima took control of the political situation, and by 1607 all of the Ryūzōji clan's domain was under the control of the Nabeshima clan.

-In the Edo period this area was called the Saga Domain (佐賀藩 Saga-han), and it included three sub-domains: the Hasunoike, Ogi and Kashima Domains. Also within the current borders of Saga Prefecture during this time were the Karatsu Domain (唐津藩 Karatsu-han) and two territories of the Tsushima-Fuchū Domain (対馬府中藩 Tsushimafuchū-han). Saga Domain and its sub-domains continued to be ruled by the Nabeshima clan, its various illegitimate family lineages and members of the former Ryūzōji clan, and politically the area was relatively stable. However, the cost of defending Nagasaki was increasing and, difficult from the start, the financial situation was worsened by the great Kyōhō famine and the Siebold Typhoon of 1828. Nevertheless, due to the large area of reclaimed land from the Ariake Sea arable land was able to increase significantly and by the 1840s the annual koku of Saga Domain increased to about 670,000, twice that of 200 years before.

Around the middle of the 19th century, Naomasa Nabeshima strove to set right the domain's financial affairs, reduce the number of government officials, and encourage local industry such as Arita porcelain, green tea, and coal. Also, thanks to the proximity of the international port of Nagasaki, new technologies were introduced from overseas, such as the reverberatory furnace and models of steam locomotives.

After the Boshin War, many people from Saga Domain assisted in the Meiji Restoration. In the Meiji era the modernization of coal mines in Kishima and Higashimatsuura districts, among others, progressed bolstered by the construction of railroads.


Eto Shimpei in Saga. Woodblock print from Tokyo Nichinichi Shimbun, 1874.
Other Languages
Afrikaans: Saga-prefektuur
العربية: ساغا (محافظة)
azərbaycanca: Saqa prefekturası
Bân-lâm-gú: Saga-koān
Cebuano: Saga-ken
čeština: Prefektura Saga
davvisámegiella: Saga prefektuvra
Esperanto: Gubernio Saga
Gaeilge: Maoracht Saga
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Saga-yen
한국어: 사가현
Bahasa Indonesia: Prefektur Saga
Kiswahili: Mkoa wa Saga
македонски: Сага (префектура)
Bahasa Melayu: Wilayah Saga
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Saga-gâing
Nederlands: Saga (prefectuur)
日本語: 佐賀県
پنجابی: ضلع ساگا
português: Saga (prefeitura)
română: Prefectura Saga
Simple English: Saga Prefecture
slovenčina: Saga (prefektúra)
српски / srpski: Префектура Сага
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Prefektura Saga
Basa Sunda: Préféktur Saga
українська: Префектура Саґа
Tiếng Việt: Saga (tỉnh)
文言: 佐賀縣
吴语: 佐贺县
粵語: 佐賀縣
中文: 佐贺县