Chart of the Japanese Embassies to the Ming Court
|Voyage number||Year arrived in China||Chief Ambassador||Number of vessels||Comments|
|1||1401 (Jianwen 3; Ōei 8)||Soa 祖阿||Returned to Japan in 1402 with Ming ambassadors Tianlun Daoyi 天倫道彝 and Yian Yiru 一庵一如|
|2||1403 (Yongle 1; Ōei 10)||Kenchū Keimitsu 堅中圭密||Returned to Japan in 1404 with Ming with Ming ambassadors Zhao Juren 趙居任, Zhang Hong 張洪, and monk Daocheng 道成; brought “Yongle tallies”|
|3||1404 (Yongle 2; Ōei 11)||Myōshitsu Bonryō 明室梵亮||First tally vessel, returned to Japan in 1405 with Ming ambassador Yu Shiji 俞士吉|
|4||1405 (Yongle 3; Ōei 12)||(Minamoto no Michikata 源通賢)||On orders of Ming emperor, repatriated captured Chinese pirates; returned to Japan in 1406 with Ming ambassadors Pan Ci 潘賜 and Wang Jin 王進 (eunuch)|
|5||1406 (Yongle 4; Ōei 13)||Kenchū Keimitsu 堅中圭密||Tribute mission of gratitude to the Ming; returned to Japan in 1407 with Ming ambassador|
|6||1407 (Yongle 5; Ōei 14)||Kenchū Keimitsu 堅中圭密||With a embassy of 73, Keimitsu paid tribute and returned captured pirates|
|7||1408 (Yongle 6; Ōei 15)||Kenchū Keimitsu 堅中圭密||With an embassy of over 100, Keimitsu paid tribute, offered captured pirates, and returned to Japan in 1409 with Ming ambassor Zhou Quanyu 周全渝 due to Yoshimitsu’s death|
|8||1410 (Yongle 8; Ōei 17)||Kenchū Keimitsu 堅中圭密||Mission of thanks for installation of new shogun Yoshimochi 義持; returned to Japan in 1411 with Ming ambassador Wang Jin, who was presented from reaching the capital|
|9||1433 (Xuande 8; Eikyō 5)||Ryūshitsu Dōen 龍室道淵||5||Emassay of 220; returned to Japan in 1434 with “Xuande tallies”; accompanied by Ming ambassadors Pan Ci and Lei Chun 雷春|
|10||1435 (Xuande 10; Eikyō 7)||Jochū Chūsei 恕中中誓||6||Returned to Japan in 1436 with remaining “Yongle tallies”|
|11||1453 (Jingtai 4; Kyōtoku 2)||Tōyō Inpō 東洋允澎||9||Embassy of 1200 (of whom over 350 reached the capital; returned to Japan in 1454 with “Jingtai tallies”|
|12||1468 (Chenghua 4; Ōnin 2)||Tenyo Seikei 天與清啓||3||Returned left over “Jingtai tallies” to Ming and returned to Japan in 1469 with “Chenghua tallies”;|
|13||1477 (Chenghua 13; Bunmei 9)||Jikuhō Myōbō 竺芳妙茂||3||Embassy of 300, returned to Japan in 1478|
|14||1484 (Chenghua 20; Bunmei 16)||Ryōhaku Shūi 了璞周瑋||3||Returned to Japan in 1485|
|15||1495 (Hongzhi 8; Meiō 4)||Gyōbu Jumei 堯夫壽蓂||3||Returned to Japan in 1496 with “Hongzhi tallies”|
|16||1509 (Zhengde 4; Eishō 6)||(Song Suqing 宋素卿)||1||Solo Hosokawa mission|
|17||1511 (Zhengde 6 Eishō 8)||Ryōan Keigo 了庵桂悟||3 (2 Ōuchi; 1 Hosokawa)||Party of 600; returned to Japan in 1513 with “Zhengde tallies”; returned leftover tallies from the Jingtai and Chenghua eras|
|18||1523 (Jiajing 2 Daiei 3)||Sōsetsu Kendō
Rankō Zuisa 鸞岡瑞佐
|3 Ōuchi 1 Hosokawa||Ōuchi had over 100 in party; Hosokawa had over 100; each domain sent own chief ambassador; parties clashed at Ningbo|
|19||1539 (Jiajing 18; Tenmon 8)||Koshin Sekitei 湖心碩鼎||3||Party of 456; solo Ōuchi mission; returned to Japan in 1541; vice-ambassador was Sakugen Shūryō|
|20||1547 (Jiajing 26; Tenmon 16)||Sakugen Shūryō 策彥周良||4||Party of 637; Ōuchi vessels; returned Hongzhi and Zhengde tallies; returned to Japan in 1549|
1) Sakuma Shigeo 佐久間重男, “Chūsei: Sō Gen Min jidai no Nit-Chū bunka kōryū,” 中世：宋元明時代の日中文化交流 (Medieval era: Sino-Japanese cultural exchange during the Song-Yuan-Ming dynasties), pp. 220-21. . In Nit-Chū bunka kōryū shi sōsho, vol. 1: Rekishi 日中文化交流史叢書１：歴史 (Compendium of the history of Sino-Japanese cultural exchange, vol. 1: History), ed. Ōba Osamu 大庭修 and Wang Xiaoqiu 王曉秋, pp. 164-253 (Tokyo: Taishūkan shoten, 1995).
2) Yamane Yukio 山根幸夫, Chūgoku no rekishi 7: Min Teikoku to Nihon 中国の歴史７：明帝国と日本 (History of China, vol. 7: The Ming empire and Japan) (Tokyo: Kōdansha, 1977), p. 56.
3) Tanaka Takeo 田中健夫, Wakō to kangō bōeki 倭冦と勘合貿易 (The "Japanese" pirates and the tally trade) (Tokyo: Shibundō, 1961, rpt. 1966).
4) Tanaka Takeo 田中健夫, “Ken-Min shi,” 遣明使 (Embassies to the Ming court). In Kokushi dai jiten 国史大辞典 (Encyclopedia of Japanese history), 5:225-26 (Tokyo: Yoshikawa kōbunkan, 1985).
5) Sakuma Shigeo 佐久間重男, Nichi-Min kankei shi no kenkyū, 日明関係史の研究 (Studies in the history of Ming-Japan relations), pp. 154-55 (Tokyo: oshikawa kōbunkan, 1992).
6) Zheng Liangsheng 鄭樑生, Min-Nichi kankei shi no kenkyū 明・日関係史の研究 (Studies in the history of Ming-Japanese relations) (Tokyo: Yūzankaku shuppan, 1985), pp. 68-69.
7) Kobata Atsushi 小葉田淳, Chūsei Nis-Shi tsūkō bōeki no kenkyū 中世日支通行貿易史の研究 (Studies in the history of Sino-Japanese diplomacy and trade in the medieval era) (Tokyo: Tōkō shoin, 1941).
Reprinted by permission of the publisher from Articulating the Sinosphere: Sino-Japanese Relations in Space and Time by Joshua A. Fogel, pp. 102-107, 110-113, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, Copyright © 2009 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College.