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Prince Mikasa, Brother of Emperor Hirohito of Japan, Dies at 100


Prince Mikasa around 1930. He was the first Japanese royal to become a professor, and to get a driver’s license.

Imagno, via Getty Images

Prince Mikasa, an Imperial Army veteran who turned pacifist and the independent-minded younger brother of Emperor Hirohito of Japan, who reigned during World War II, died in Tokyo on Thursday. He was 100.

The Imperial Household Agency announced his death. Japanese news reports said he had been hospitalized since May, initially because of pneumonia.

Prince Takahito Mikasa was born in Tokyo on Dec. 2, 1915. He was the uncle of the current emperor, Akihito, and fifth in line to the throne.

“Ever since he was a child he has made it a habit to confound the imperial household,” Time magazine said of the prince in 1955.

He was the first…

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