Republic of Ezo

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Ezo Kyòwakoku
Republic of Ezo
Ezo-Snorist flag.png
Official National Japanese
Official Local Russian
Official Religion Officially Atheist
Other religions Xintò, Buddhism, Christianity (Russian Orthodox)
Capital さっぽろ
Government Type Democratic Republic (officially)
Dictatorship (in practice)
First Citizen (last) Nixicawa Çurayuqui
Establishment 1942
Dissolution Saisei 41, Gogaçu 8
June 12, 1992
Currency Atarasii ryò (ari) = 100 atarasii sen (ase)
Supranational Organizations
Major Subdivisions 19 provinces (ken)

Note on language: Ezo rejected candji and katakana (candji were, in fact, illegal), using a purely hiragana orthography, with the word separator dot. They also used a more phonemic-based romanization, which used k for the entire c-row (e.g., ka ki ku ke ko instead of ca qui cu que co), t for the entire t-row, etc., and y and w for the /j/ and /w/ sounds in all contexts, and the length mark for all monomorphemic long vowels. In the early 50's, there had been a brief experiment with cyrillicization. The Republic's currency was, before inflation all but destroyed its value, decimalized, one ryò (りょー) being divided into 100 sen (せん) or 1000 rin (りん). Also, the republic used the metric system, and a modification of the French Revolutionary Calendar (the Ezoan version used 5-day weeks, and added a leap week every 20 years. It also began at the same time as the Meidjirequi's year).

The Republic of Ezo was founded in 1942 with Russian help, during the Japanese Civil War. It officially ended in 1992, when it was reunified with Japan.

The Republic was, for most of its history, isolated from the rest of the world, what little trade it did being mostly with Russia.


The Republic started life as a fairly genuine democratic republic. It was headed by a First Citizen elected by the People's Assembly (Zinminkai). The ruling party in the beginning was known as the Republican Party (Kyòwatò - 共和党). Russia gave them aid in their struggle to establish themselves, and to keep Japan from attempting reconquest. Russian troops remained in the Republic to ensure that it remained a Russian ally. In 1953, the ruling Republican Party split into two groups, the People's Party and the Rational-Progressive Party. As the People's Party favored reunification with Japan, Russia sided with the Rational-Progressive Party (Goli-tequi Xinpo-to, ごうり-てき しんぽ とう), despite misgivings about their goals. By 1955, through fraud, voter intimidation, and judicious use of the Peace Preservation Law, the People's Party and other minor parties had been effectively eliminated. Ryu Ota, a former communist, became the leader of the Rational Progressive Party. The Rational-Progressive Party began their program of "rational progress". The first step was rationalizing such areas as time-keeping (the new calendar, as well as a metric division of the day), currency (decimalization of the currency), and language (elimination of kanji, brief cyrillic experiment). They continued onward in their goal of "bringing reason and order to the Japanese culture", attacking "superstition" (as they referred to religions). They also encouraged the revival of Ainu culture, mainly to secure their loyalty; Xigeru Caiano, an Ainu Ezo activist, became Second Citizen in 1982. During the 60's and 70's, they became increasingly isolationist, pursuing a policy of "self-sufficiency", an economically ruinous policy, but one based on fears of "contamination" by the outside world. As Russia began to falter in the 80's, the Republic's last link with the outside world began to crumble, and the economy went into a complete tail-spin. Finally, in 1991, the underground Imperial Restoration Party rose up and led a march on the People's Assembly, overthrowing the government and establishing a Provisional Governing Council, which immediately began negotiations with the Imperial government towards reintegration.


Old Ryò

When the Republic was founded, the ryò was equal to the Japanese lò (old pre-Civil War value of 440 gr silver), subdivided into 100 sen or 1000 rin. Originally, coins were:

Value Metal Equivalent in Old Lò Approximate Equivalent in New Lò
10 Ryò gold 10L 11L 15x 7½f
5 Ryò 5L 5L 15x 16¼f
2 Ryò 2L 2L 6x 7½f
1 Ryò silver 1L 1L 3x 3¼f
50 sen 8x 9x 14f
20 sen 3x 5f 3x 20¾f
10 sen 1x 15f 1x 22¾f
5 sen copper-nickel 32 f 23½f
2 sen 12.8 f 9.57 f
1 sen copper-nickel 6.4 f 4.78 f
5 rin 3.2 f 2.39f
2 rin 1.28 f .957f
1 rin .64 f .478f

With banknotes of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, and 200 Ryò.

The gold coins had very little production to begin with, and were soon dropped altogether. Inflation became a problem in the 50's, and by the early 60's, cupronickle was used for 10 and 20 sen with the 1 and 2 rin coins abolished, low-grade silver alloy for 50 sen, and banknotes for higher denominations. By this point, the Ezoan ryò was worth around 3x 20f Imperial. Inflation remained moderate during the 60's, 70's and early 80's, with the Ezoan ryò being about 25 fun Imperial in 1983 (by this point, coins of various non-precious metals were 5, 10, 20 sen, and bills were 50 sen, 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000 ryò. That's when inflation started hitting hard.

New Ryò

The New Ryò (Ari, short for atarasii ryò) was released in 1988 at a rate of 10,000 old ryò = 1 New Ryò (with subdivions of "New Sen", AKA Ase, from atarasii sen), using coins of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 sen, and banknotes of 50 sen, 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 ryò. This new ryò was only about 5x 20f Imperial, and continued to suffer hyperinflation. By the end of the Republic, the ari was around 500,000 to the Imperial lò, and lacked coins all together, with bills of 5 000, 10 000, 20 000, 50 000, 100 000, 500 000, 1 000 000, and 5 000 000 ari in general circulation (1,000 and 2,000 were still found sometimes as well). The Empire redeemed the bills at the rate of 500,000 ari = 1 lò, making the 5,000 worth 4 fun, the 10,000 worth 8 fun, 20,000 worth 16 fun, the 50,000 worth 1 xu 15 fun, the 100,000 worth 3 xu 5 fun, the 500,000 worth 1 lò, the 1,000,000 worth 2 lò, and the 5,000,000 worth 10 lò. Legal tender status was removed on Saisei 41, Hatxigaçu 30 (September 29, 1992) but the bills remain redeemable at any Ezoan bank indefinitely.


Provinces by region, with capitals. Regions had no administrative function

  • Asian Mainland
  • Karahuto (Sakhalin)
    • Toyohara (Toyohara)
    • Maoka (Maoka)
    • Esutoru (Esutoru)
    • Sikuku (Sikuka)
  • Ezo Island (Hokkaido)
    • Abasiri (Abasiri)
    • Kamikawa (Asahikawa)
    • Kusiro (Kusiro)
    • Hidaka (Urakawa Town)
    • Hiyama (Esasi Town)
    • Iburi (Muroran)
    • Isicari (Sapporo)
    • Nemuro (Nemuro Town) <-- Note: Includes Tisima (Kuriles)
    • Osima (Hakodate)
    • Rumoi (Rumoi)
    • Sorati (Iwamizawa)
    • Sòya (Wakkanai)
    • Tokati (Obihiro)
    • Siribesi (Kuttyan Town)