Zhao Zhi

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Zhào Zhì was a Ming dynasty court official who served as the third Ming envoy to travel to Japan to demand the suppression of the wakô and the beginning of formal tributary relations. His two predecessors, dispatched in 1368 and 1369, were unsuccessful; Zhào brought with him to Japan a list of other kingdoms which had already agreed to pay tribute to the newly-established Ming Empire, as well as a group of some fifteen Japanese Buddhist priests arrested by Chinese authorities and now being repatriated. Prince Kanenaga, head of the imperial court's Kyushu headquarters, the Seiseifu, agreed to take on the title of King of Japan himself and sent Zhao back to China with extensive tributary goods/gifts including a number of horses, as well as some seventy Chinese individuals who had previously been captured by wakô and were now being repatriated.


  • Gregory Smits, Maritime Ryukyu, University of Hawaii Press (2019), 63.