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Taking advantage of his diplomatic privilege in Japan to travel further and inquire deeper than other foreigners, Swiss envoy Aimé Humbert (1819–1900) brought back stories of life under the Tokugawa shogunate in its final years. First published in the journal Le Tour du monde in 1866, his account of Japanese history and daily life was republished as Le Japon illustré in 1870. This 1874 English translation brought readers up to date by including additional chapters on the 1868 revolution and its aftermath. Humbert focused his narrative on the history and culture of four locations: Benten, the foreign settlement at Yokohama; Kyoto, where emperors had resided for centuries; Kamakura, the old centre of political power; and Yeddo, now Tokyo, the new capital of Japan. Featuring almost 200 illustrations taken from Humbert's collection of prints and photographs, this book captures descriptively and pictorially a country on the verge of dramatic political and social change.