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ベイカー寮221B/Baker House 221B TOP  >  Taiga Drama  >  Idaten >  Jigorō Kanō

Jigorō Kanō

He was born to a family who was a wholesaler and ran a brewery in Kobe, 1860. The family supported KATSU Kaishū.

In 1870, his father started working for the Meiji Government so he studied in Tokyo and entered Tokyo University in 1877. But he was bullied by his classmates and tried to strengthen himself by practicing jūjutsu, the predecessor of judo. After that he founded judo and established Kōdō-kan, a gym to practice it. Later judo was adopted as a required subject in the high school under the old system that were only for boys. 

In 1891, he became a principal of Daigo Kōtō Gakkō (No.5 High School, one of the institutions of higher education) in Kumamoto, present Kumamoto University. He was also a deputy head of Gakushūin and a principal of Tōkyō Kōtō Shihan Gakkō, present Tsukuba University. He made efforts to spread sports in Japan and participated in establishing Nippon Joshi Daigaku, Japan Women's University.

In 1909, he became a first Asian member of the IOC and established Dai Nippon Taiiku Kyōkai, present Japan Sports Association to make Japanese athletes join the Olympic Games. In 1936, he succeeded in hosting the 1940 Olympics in Tokyo.

However he died of pneumonia on the way to Yokohama from Vancouver after taking part in the IOC session in Cairo, 1938. After the death, he was awarded the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun. 

The 1940 Olympics was cancelled due to the outbreak of the World War II and his dream realised in 1964.

He had seven children between his wife Sumako and was a member of the House of Peers.  Kanō Jigorō hai (Jigorō Kanō Cup) is named after him.

The image is Kōji Yakusho as Jigorō Kanō.
(From the official website of "Idaten")


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