The History of Imperial Japan Quiz!

By: Gavin Thagard
Estimated Completion Time
4 min
The History of Imperial Japan Quiz!
Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

Until 1868, Japan shut itself off from the rest of the world, but over the course of the next 70 years, the country went from an underdeveloped nation to an industrial and military powerhouse. Test your knowledge on Japan's growth and the people who made it possible.
What event signaled the start of the Empire of Japan?
Meiji Restoration
In 1868, Emperor Meiji was restored to power in an event known as the Meiji Restoration. With the guidance of his Council, Emperor Meiji helped modernize Japan until his death in 1912.
End of the Warring States
Annexation of Korea
Signing the Kanagawa Treaty

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Who ruled Japan before the Meiji Restoration?
Buddhist Monks
Imperial Diet
Tokugawa Shogunate
Before the Emperor was restored to power, the Tokugawa Shogunate ruled over Japan. The Tokugawa came to power after the Warring States period when Tokugawa Ieyasu unified Japan.
Council of State

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What was the name of the war between the ishin shishi and the Tokugawa Shogunate?
First Opium War
Boshin War
The Boshin War was fought in 1868 and 1869, as the Imperial forces under the ishin shishi fought against the Tokugawa Shogunate. The Imperial forces won and abolished any remnants​ of the Tokugawa Shogunate.
First Sino-Japanese War
Russo-Japanese War

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When did the Meiji Constitution go into effect?
1865
1703
1890
The Meiji Constitution went into effect on November 29, 1890. The Constitution placed the Emperor as the head of the state, and it would be the law of the land until after World War II.
2000

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What was the upper house of the Imperial Diet?
House of Representatives
House of Ministers
House of the State
House of Peers
When the Meiji Constitution was approved, two houses formed the Imperial Diet. The lower house was the House of Representatives, and the upper house was the House of Peers. The House of Peers consisted of members from the Imperial family.

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What was one of the purposes of the Iwakura Mission?
Renegotiate Treaties
The Tokugawa Shogunate signed treaties with foreign nations that the new Meiji government saw as unfair. Therefore, the new Japanese government sent diplomatic leaders to western countries to renegotiate the treaties.
Start a War with Korea
Take Control of Vietnam
Establish a Colony in South Africa

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What was a result of the samurai class being abolished?
The Tokugawa Shogunate regained power.
Emperor Meiji was removed from power.
The Satsuma Rebellion
After the Boshin War, the caste system was ended, which eliminated the samurai class. Unemployed samurai were disgruntled, and many joined a rebellion led by Saigo Takamori.
The Sino-Japanese War

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Which was NOT a reason for the Satsuma Rebellion?
Abolishment of the samurai class
Westernization of Japan
Samurai were unemployed
The restoration of the Emperor
The Satsuma samurai who fought in the Boshin War believed that the Tokugawa Shogunate was too weak when it came to foreign affairs. They supported the slogan "expel the barbarians." After the war, these samurai believed the new government was showing the same signs of weakness in foreign matters.

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Who was NOT one of the Three Great Nobles after the Meiji Restoration?
Ii Naosuke
Although many samurai helped lead Japan through the Meiji Restoration, the Three Great Nobles were some of the most influential during this turbulent time in Japanese history.
Okubo Toshimichi
Saigo Takamori
Kido Takayoshi

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How did Okubo Toshimichi die?
He was killed during battle.
He died of a heart attack.
He was executed for treason.
He was assassinated.
Okubo Toshimichi was extremely influential in modernizing Japan, but after the Satsuma Rebellion, he was seen as a traitor by many samurai. On May 14, 1878, he was assassinated.

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What was the First Sino-Japanese War primarily fought over?
Influence over Korea
With major instability, the Korean government under the Joseon Dynasty had a difficult time suppressing a peasant rebellion. Both China and Japan sent troops to help the Joseon Dynasty, which resulted in a war between China and Japan.
A port in Vietnam
Control over the East China Sea
China invaded Japan

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What did Japan gain after winning the Sino-Japanese War?
Control of the Yellow River
Shanghai
Taiwan
After the Empire of Japan defeated China in the Sino-Japanese War, mainly because Japan had modernized its military, Japan gained control of Taiwan and the Liaodong Peninsula. This gave Japan more influence over Korea.
Beijing

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Which country did NOT participate in the Gaselee Expedition during the Boxer Rebellion?
Japan
Spain
A Chinese uprising started in 1899 over foreign intervention in China. The Chinese rebels fought against foreigners and Chinese Christians, eventually gaining the support of the Qing Dynasty. This uprising forced foreign nations like Japan to get involved in the conflict.
Germany
Russia

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Which country gained control of the Liaodong Peninsula from Japan?
Germany
China
France
Russia
After the end of the Sino-Japanese War, Japan was forced to withdraw from the Liaodong Peninsula by Germany, Russia, and France. Russia took over control of the Peninsula when Japan was gone.

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What did Japan offer Russia in exchange for influence in Korea?
Manchuria
Japan wanted to expand its interest in Korea. In exchange, Japan was willing to give up control of Manchuria. However, Russia refused the offer, and war broke out between the two countries.
Taiwan
Control of the Yellow River
Control of Shanghai

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Where was the first battle of the Russo-Japanese War?
Mukden, Manchuria
Port Arthur
After negotiations broke down between Russia and Japan, Japan attacked Port Arthur which was controlled by Russia. The attack came before an official declaration of war was issued by Japan.
Vladivostok
Yalu River

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What did Japan demonstrate by winning the Russo-Japanese War?
The ability to combat a Western power
No country knew the extent of Japanese military power until Japan defeated Russia in the Russo-Japanese War. This victory increased Japan's influence in world affairs.
The ability to defeat China
The willingness to negotiate
The ability to defeat the United State

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What year was Korea fully annexed to Japan?
1900
1865
1910
After winning the war with Russia, Japan gained full influence over Korea. In 1910, Japan finally annexed Korea with the Japan-Korea Treaty of 1910, making the peninsula part of the Japanese territory.
1945

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Who mediated the negotiations between Japan and Russia at the end of the Russo-Japanese War?
Winston Churchill
Theodore Roosevelt
Both Russia and Japan agreed that Theodore Roosevelt would mediate the peace negotiations between the two countries. The result was the signing of the Treaty of Portsmouth, which ended the war.
Yuan Shikai
Empress Dowager Cixi

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Why did Japan side with Britain in WWI?
Britain promised Japan land in South Africa.
Britain promised Japan a colony in Germany.
Japan wanted to extend its influence by capturing German held bases around China.
When WWI broke out, Japan saw it as an opportunity to extend its influence over China. With the help of British troops, Japan occupied German territories throughout the Pacific.
Japan didn't want to start a war with the United States.

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What document did Japan submit to China in 1915 to gain greater control over China?
Japan-Korea Treaty
Twenty-One Demands
At the end of WWI, Japan submitted a list of demands to China, which would increase Japan's control of the country. If China did not sign the document, Japan threatened to attack, and China was extremely weak at the time. Although all of the demands were not met, China eventually agreed to most of them.
Treaty of Portsmouth
Boxer Protocol

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Who succeeded Emperor Meiji?
Taisho Yoshihito
Emperor Taisho succeeded Emperor Meiji on July 30, 1912, making him the 123rd Emperor of Japan. He reigned until his death on December 25, 1926.
Nakayama Tadayasu
Arisugawa Takehito
Takamatsu Nobuhito

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What was a result of the Mukden Incident?
Japan invaded Manchuria
The Japanese government staged an attack on a railway in south Manchuria. After the staged attack, Japan invaded Manchuria and established a puppet government under the last Qing emperor, Puyi.
Japan lost control of Korea
Japan attacked the United States
China invaded Japan

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What was the name of the puppet government Japan established in Manchuria?
Empire of Qing
East Turkestan Republic
Manchukuo
When Japan conquered Manchuria from China in 1932, they established a puppet government called Manchukuo. The government remained in place untill after WWII.
Reorganized National Government of China

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What is considered the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War?
Mukden Incident
Marco Polo Bridge Incident
In July of 1937, Japan attacked the Marco Polo Bridge, but the Chinese forces knew they needed to hold the bridge at all cost. With help from reinforcements, the Chinese forces were able to repel the Japanese attack.
Rape of Nanking
Invasion of Manchuria

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What helped Japan extend its influence over China?
Civil war in China
China was divided during the onset of the Second Sino-Japanese War. The Kuomintang government under the Nationalist party was being challenged for power by the Communist Party of China.
Large scale Russian attacks in west China
Direct U.S. intervention on the side of Japan
Communist support

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Who did Japan side with in the Tripartite Pact?
China and Korea
Russia and Britain
Germany and Italy
Japan knew that the country would need help from European nations as they continued to extend their influence in Asia, especially as tensions grew between Japan and the United States. Therefore, Japan signed the Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy.
The United States and Canada

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Why did Japan believe it had a right to imperialize Asia?
China was too cruel
India was extending its influence
Asians should rule Asians
For centuries, Asian countries were under direct or indirect control by Western nations. As Japan modernized, the country began to realize they were a world power and should take over imperial rule throughout Asia from these western countries.
Encouragement from the United States

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Where was the Rape of Nanking?
Korea
Japan
Taiwan
China
During the Second Sino-Japanese War, Japan captured Nanking, the capital of the Republic of China at the time, killing and raping Chinese citizens after capturing the city.

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What year did Japan and the USSR sign the Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact?
1930
1941
After open hostilities through much of the 1930s over land in Manchuria and Siberia, Japan and the USSR agreed to a nonaggression pact on April 13, 1941, as both countries prepared for a global war.
1922
1912

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What Japanese attack forced the United States to enter WWII?
Battle at the Java Sea
Attack on Pearl Harbor
The relationship between the United States and Japan had been deteriorating for years before the attack on Pearl Harbor. A war between the two coutries was inevitable. On December 7, 1941, Japan attacked the U.S. Pacific Fleet, forcing the U.S. into WWII.
Rape of Nanking
Doolittle Raid

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Who was Showa Hirohito?
Prime Minister of Japan
Emperor of Japan
Emperor Showa was the 124th Emperor of Japan. He reigned after his father, Emperor Taisho, who died in 1926. Emperor Showa led Japan through WWII and the nation's subsequent surrender after the war.
Foreign Minister of Japan
Army Minister

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Which was a decisive defeat for the Japanese Navy in WWII?
Battle at Yalu River
Battle of Port Arthur
Battle of Midway
In the Battle of Midway, the United States lost one carrier to Japan's four. The defeat of the Japanese Navy here was a turning point in the Pacific War that the Empire of Japan could not recover from.
Battle of the Yellow Sea

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What was the main reason the United States dropped the atomic bomb on Japan?
Save American lives
Even though defeat was imminent, Japan refused to surrender, hoping for a victory that would give them bargaining room during negotiations to end the war. To save American lives in a drawn out war, the United States decided to drop the atomic bomb, which they knew would force Japan to surrender.
Test the bomb
Beat Russia to dropping a bomb
Put fear into Germany

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Who occupied Japan after WWII?
Russia
Germany
The United States
The United States occupied Japan after the war to help demilitarize the country and transform Japan into a more democratic state, which was especially important to the U.S. with the fear of Communism spreading.
China

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