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JAPANESE COURT SCANDAL.

SPHB lITFIPBUTT OFJ A COUST, A scandal of the gravest and most pathetic character, affecting the head of one of the oldest and most exalted families in Japan, has just come to light at Toklo. - The Japanese capital is Iβ a ferment over the discovery of tbe secret wedding ot the young Count Todo In London to an Englishwoman, whom hie has since discarded, with a view to marriage with a princess of the Boyal House. Ills beartlees desertion hap brought down upon him the severest displeasure of the Emperor, who has revoked his consent to the projected betbrotha), deprived the count of hie rank, and banished him from Court, and requested tbe resignations of a number of officials who were privy to the affair.

The story is full of the romance and pathos inseparable from international marriage*; Some two yean ago Count Todo B-ae sent to England to complete hig education, and, against the rules of the ancient nobility to which be belongs, he contracted a marriag* with an English lady. The wedding took place at St. George's, Han-over-sqnare, the bride being Vim Elena Grace Addison.

The count was a young man of twentyfour, iUort end dark, after the type of his countrymen. Leavlngr his private tutor in Cambridge, he went to london, and for a time lived in Pathfleld-road, Streatham He met Mj« Addison at the house of a friend. She was then twenty-nine, a woman o' great personal charm, darjt and tall with a masg ot hair ~„„ ob]i(lne eyes H<jr eocial. posidon WB e excellent, her father haying been a Hungarian baron, and eb.e lived in Victoria-.treet, Westminster. (main"* COUllt proposed «f*« » ehon acquaintance, and the marriage took dace by .peoial Hcense „ September, the count's deslre , t wa secret, owing to the posslble ob^ne of Wβ people. The count explained that if it became known he might lose his rank and eetates. Two friend, only W pT + sent, Mr and Mrs Jemmett-Browne. After a short honeymoon the count and countess returned to a flat In Carllije Ataniloni Victoria-street, SUMMONED TO JAjPAIJ. Exaptly three months after hig marriage Count Todo announced hie return to Japan It appeared th,at his family had heard some hint of the marriage, and peremptorily coini manfied him to return. "You (ball follow mc out," he sold to hi* wife. On his arrival iv Japan he found that the family had been revolving ambitious echemee for hie future, and were Hopeful of winning for him the band of the Prtncese Take, of the House of Kitasblrakawa, one of the numerous branches of the Imperial family. But for the English marriage there would have been no serious obstacle to the realisation of this project. The Todos were in. high, favour at Court, and, Iα point of Un£ age, were equal to other families who had been honoured by an alliance with, the Imperial House.

A divorce must be obtained, but it was necessary that the proceeding should be as secret us the qrlglaal icarriugo. decree could pot b« obtalneo" to England, except ou the usual grounds, and in flpy case the resuit would be c publicity fataL to the schemes of the faniUy. Out the Jananese law lends itself more es.eily to the digßolqtlon of marriage, aua, despite the r!*k of detection, the family ietioiv«d to avail themselves of its aid. It vu decided ,to have the marriage registered, according to statutory form, in a Japanese police offlcq, and then hare .a divorce immediately eitected and placed on record.

Tho Japanese law treats marriage as an entirely secular matter, end the only requirement of the law in registration. Provided the wife has no objeotlon to the dissolution of marriage, the marriage entry -In the police register may be cancelled on the application of the hnsbaud. In the case of Count ToSo no legal objection could be raised, as tbe wife was in London. The divorce was according!; obtained,' and the count transferred hjs residence to a new police district so as to have a clean record on tbe books whet) registering bin next marriage. EMPEROR INDIGNAXTTbe plane for the Imperial alliance were then preesed forward.' Tbe young nobleman made formal application for the baad of tbe Princess Take, one of whose rety tives is shortly to marry the daughter of the Emperor. ■Hie Majesty gave his assent to the match,..and congratulations were etlU being showered on tbe Todo family, when suddenly the whole- affair 'became public. The editor of one of the Toklo papers had heard -ruinoun of tba-.'.yonng count'b conduct in England, and the steps t» conceal his marriage; he satisfied himself of tbe truth of' the story, and tfiea took the bold step of publishing the fact*. | The report was at first but a searching Inquiry proved it to be correct, and brought on the Xodo family the full weight o* the Emperor's displeasure. The young count's ruin, is believed to be final and complete. A new head will probably have to.*e |«B|i4',for tee house he represents. ' T All who areiat all concerned in the matter are to suiter appropriate penalties, and all the Imperial officials concerned in the negotiations for the marriage have sent 4a their rwtenatlona,

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JAPANESE COURT SCANDAL. Auckland Star, Volume XL, Issue 62, 13 March 1909

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