The Imperial Household of Japan announced the date for the wedding of Her Imperial Highness Princess Mako of Akishino to Kei Komuro on Wednesday. The pair will wed on 4 November 2018 at the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo.
Her Imperial Highness’s grandparents, the Emperor and Empress of Japan, are expected to attend.
As part of Japanese tradition, the couple will become fully engaged through ‘Nosai no Gi’ – a traditional rite of betrothal and formal engagement ceremony- on 4 March 2018. The Imperial Household said that this would take place on a Sunday due to Komuro’s job as a paralegal.
The ceremony will include Komuro sending a messenger to visit Mako’s home bringing gifts of sake, sea bream and textiles, according to the Japanese Times.
This will be the first imperial marriage since the wedding of then Princess Noriko to Kunimaro Senge in 2014. Noriko lost her title and ceased to be a member of the Imperial House upon the union.
Princess Mako’s engagement to Kei Komuro was officially announced by the Imperial Household of Japan in September of this year. As a result of her marriage, the Princess will lose her royal status and since Kei is a commoner.
The pair appeared together on public broadcaster NHK to announce their pending nuptials. Her Imperial Highness works as a researcher at the University of Tokyo Museum while her fiancée works in a Tokyo law office. They first met as students at the International Christian University five years ago.
The 26-year-old is the eldest grandchild of Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko and the older child of Fumihito, Prince Akishino and Kiko, Princess Akishino. Her younger brother, Prince Hisahito, 11, is one of only four heirs to the throne, as women are not permitted to reign in their own right.
The Emperor expressed his desire to abdicate last year in a televised address; it is expected to take place by the end of 2018 in a one-off law written by the Japanese parliament. Crown Prince Naruhito will succeed his father who is only followed in the line of succession by his younger brother and nephew.