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Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

Science and technology in 19th century Japan: The Scottish

Alex D.D. Craik
Mathematical Institute, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Fife KY16 9SS, Scotland, UK
Received 28 July 2005; received in revised form 9 January 2006; accepted 15 April 2006
Communicated by T. Kambe

From 1853, Japans policy of isolation began to be eroded; and, following the Meiji restoration of 1868, the
country experienced an unprecedented phase of rapid Westernisation and industrialisation. Until the mid-1880s,
many Europeans and Americans worked as merchants, bankers, engineers, doctors and educators; but most were
soon replaced by the rst generation of well-trained Japanese experts. Many of these Westerners were from Scotland,
and this article reviews their contributions to the early development of modern Japan.
2006 The Japan Society of Fluid Mechanics and Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Keywords: Meiji Japan; Japan and Scotland; Physics education; Scottish scientists

1. Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2. Merchants, bankers and doctors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3. Early students in Britain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
4. Lighthouses, roads and railways . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
5. The University and the Engineering College . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
6. The scientists . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
7. Japanese researchers in Scotland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
8. Discussion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
9. Bibliographical note . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Acknowledgements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

E-mail address: addc@st-and.ac.uk.

0169-5983/$32.00 2006 The Japan Society of Fluid Mechanics and Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


1. Introduction
Between 1998 and 2003 I had the privilege of making several extended visits to Japan, when I held
temporary visiting appointments in Kyoto University. In common with all Western visitors who arrive
with little or no knowledge of the Japanese language, I was at rst struck more by the differences than
the similarities between Japan and Western Europe. But greater familiarity soon revealed the huge extent
of Japans present-day Westernisation, and I more gradually became aware of the major roles played
by Scottish merchants, engineers and educators in the early years of that process. Being myself Scottish,
I was intrigued to learn more about the experiences and contributions of my early predecessors in Japan.
Much has already been written about the early Western visitors to Japan, both in English and Japanese
(see bibliographical note at end). I have restricted myself to published sources in English, for, like most
(but not all) of the early visitors, my command of Japanese is very limited. Though Japanese scientists
may already know some of what I outline here, they may not have distinguished the Scots from other
igirisu-jin (Englishmen: a loose appellation then applied to all non-American English-speakers from
Britain and its Empire); and the material described will be unfamiliar to the wider scientic community.
Though this article does not concern uid dynamics, the usual theme of this journal, special circumstances perhaps justify a look at the early days of cooperation between Japan and the West. The late
Professor Imai was an international ambassador for Japanese science; and this international journal with
origins in Japan symbolises the many scientic fruits of seeds planted in the mid-to-late 19th century.
With the expulsion of all Portuguese traders by the Tokugawa government in 1638, Japan entered more
than 200 years of virtual isolation from foreign inuence: there remained only a small tightly controlled
Dutch trading settlement at Deshima (or Dejima), just off Nagasaki. The arrival in 1853 of the black
ships commanded by the American Commodore Matthew Perry nally brought an end to this isolation,
and the beginning of the end for the Tokugawa bakufu government. Sword-carrying samurai were no
match for modern naval repower, and trading concessions in Japanese ports were immediately granted
to ships from the US, so breaking the Dutch trading monopoly. Seeking similar rights, missions from
Britain and Russia soon followed.
The British mission to China and Japan in 18571859 was led by a Scottish aristocrat, James Bruce,
eighth Earl of Elgin and 12th Earl of Kincardine. He had a distinguished diplomatic career, including
posts as Governor of Jamaica, Governor-in-Chief of British North America (Canada), and lastly Viceroy
of India. Though his gunboat diplomacy in China was heavy handed, and involved a lengthy bombardment
of Canton, his negotiations in Japan were conducted peacefully and resulted in trading concessions similar
to those recently granted to the Americans. But these unequal treaties, exerted under military threat,
were resented by successive Japanese governments.
Lord Elgins personal secretary, Laurence Oliphant (18221888), was also a Scot. On their return,
Oliphants well-written and well-illustrated account of the missions travels was published in two volumes
in 1859 by the Scottish publisher Blackwood (Oliphant, 1859), and it proved a great success. It gave the
British people their rst reliable description of conditions in China and Japan, and it presented a favourable,
even romanticised, view of Japanese manners and culture.
The weakness of Tokugawa rule was by now apparent; and an alliance between the powerful Satsuma
and Choshu clans, with clandestine arms supply from Britain, led to its fall in 1868. The emperor was
restored as head of state, and moved from Kyoto to a new palace on the site of the demolished Tokugawa
one in Edo. The city was renamed Tokyo, and for his reign the emperor adopted the name Meiji,
meaning enlightenment-governing.


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

But even the insular Tokugawa bakufu had moved to acquire Western technology and scientic knowledge. It founded a naval school with Dutch staff in 1855, established shipyards in 18551856 to build to
Western models, and it started an iron foundry in Osaka in 1857. Meanwhile, the daimyo (local rulers) of
Mito and Satsuma manufactured their own cannons in the 1840s and built Western-style ships by 1858;
and the daimyo of Hizen ordered a shipbuilding plant from the Dutch in 1856. In 1864, the Satsuma
daimyo opened a school for Western learning in Kagoshima, that concentrated on naval and military
studies (Fox, 1969; Jones, 1980; Checkland, 1989).
Traditionally educated Japanese studied the Confucian classics, some astronomy, navigation, calendrical calculations, and wasan mathematics. The last, which developed from Chinese mathematics, reached
considerable sophistication in solving geometrical problems and in formulating its own system of algebra.
There was also a high level of prociency in arithmetical calculations using the soroban abacus. (For
early Japanese science and mathematics see Nakayama, 1990; Smith and Mikami, 1914; Horiuchi, 1994;
Sasaki, 1994.)
Some Western medical knowledge had reached Japan through the Portuguese and the Dutch, their
anatomy and surgery complementing traditional oriental kampo medicine. Among later Tokugawa contacts, the most inuential was the German Philip Franz von Siebold: he practised and taught in Nagasaki
in the 1820s until expelled as a threat to national security for exchanging information with Japanese
Of the several Japanese who before 1860 attempted to learn about rangaku (or Dutch science, then
equated with Western science), the most inuential was Fukuzawa Yukichi (18351901), who studied
the Dutch language and Western gunnery techniques in Nagasaki around 1854. In 1858, he started a
school in Edo to teach Dutch (in due course, this school became Keio University). But, on visiting
Yokohama, Fukuzawa was stunned to learn that the residents in the small foreign settlement there could
not understand a word of Dutch and that years of his study had been in vain (Koizumi, 1975, p. 17).
(Linguistic barriers had also hampered Lord Elgins mission: arriving in Nagasaki in 1857, they found
many Japanese interpreters who were uent in Dutch, which no member of their mission could speak,
but only one with a smattering of English.) Fukuzawa then learned English, took part in the rst Japanese
mission to the US in 1860, and then another to Europe in 1862. On his return, he wrote a best-selling
work describing conditions in the West, and became a prominent philosopher and advocate of scientic

2. Merchants, bankers and doctors

British merchants were quick to exploit the new opportunities offered by Elgins treaty negotiations.
Of 57 foreign companies in Nagasaki by the end of 1861, 37 were British. The rst merchant ashore in
1859 is said to have been William Keswick (18341912), a nephew of William Jardine, co-owner of the
Scottish-owned rm Jardine, Matheson & Co. which had major interests in India and China. (Much of the
Companys fortune had come from supplying the illegal trade of opium to China: it was the seizure of a
large shipment of that drug that led to the rst Opium War of 18391842 between Britain and China and
the British annexation of Hong Kong. By the mid-19th century, members of the Matheson family owned
large Scottish estates, including the entire Isle of Lewis, purchased with opium prots. The family homes
of the Jardines and Keswicks were in Dumfriesshire in the Scottish borders, and several generations were
associated with the company.)

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


Another to take advantage of the more open trading arrangements was the Scottish businessman and
entrepreneur Thomas Blake Glover (18381911), whose company soon became the largest in Nagasaki.
(Glovers name, unsuited to Japanese characters, is usually pronounced gu-ra-baa in Japan.) Glover,
who was born in Fraserburgh,Aberdeenshire, also arrived in Nagasaki in 1859 and rst worked as a general
commission agent, representing several companies that included Jardine, Matheson & Co. Another Scot,
Kenneth Ross Mackenzie, was the main JardineMatheson agent in Nagasaki, and later joined forces with
Glover. Meanwhile, Keswick set up the JardineMatheson operation in Yokohama. As early as 1861,
there was a Scottish shipwright, James Fowler Mitchell, working in Nagasaki: he was to remain in Japan
for 44 years and was buried in Kobe (Checkland, 1985, pp. 356, 266).
In 1862, Glover formed Glover & Co., originally to export Japanese tea; but he soon found more
protable (and not always legal) opportunities in the sale to Japan of ships and armaments manufactured
in Britain. The Company went on to operate its own bank, and to serve as agent for both the Hong Kong
and Shanghai Bank and the Oriental Bank. Orders of ships were placed through an Aberdeen company
owned by one of Glovers brothers, and funds were loaned by Jardine, Matheson & Co. A major purchaser
was the Satsuma daimyo, with domains in the south of Kyushu.
A British naval bombardment of the Satsuma capital of Kagoshima in 1863 reinforced the realisation
that Western-style steam vessels and armaments were necessary for defence. By 1868, many Western
ships (not always in good condition) were sold to the various clans: Satsuma and Choshu were the largest
purchasers, with 15 and eight, respectively (Checkland, 1989, p. 246; Milne, 1964). Glover also helped
to arm the Satsuma and Choshu clans in their successful bid to overthrow the Tokugawa bakufu. In 1865,
with Satsuma consent, he sold a warship and 7300 ries to the Choshu clan. A related initiative was the
clandestine transport in 1865 of several young Choshu and Satsuma samurai for study in Britain: the need
to study Western learning was now apparent, and many of these students later became leaders of the
pro-Western Meiji government.
Following the restoration of 1868, the Meiji Government immediately established a radical modernisation programme. During 18711873, it sent the 50-strong Iwakura diplomatic mission to visit the US,
Britain, France, Germany, Holland, Belgium and Russia. Its aims were to establish the credentials of
the new government with these overseas powers; to try to renegotiate treaties regarded as unfair; and
to familiarise themselves with the industrial advances of the West. They took with them about 50 students, who were placed in various colleges and universities en route. The mission was treated royally
(and exhaustingly) in each country, with organised tours and demonstrations of factories, lighthouses and
technological processes, as well as civic receptions and cultural events. But their hopes of renegotiating
trade treaties were disappointed.
In the early Meiji years, Glover pursued many business ventures that included shipbuilding in Nagasaki
and coalmining in Takashima: but under-funding led to bankruptcy in 1870. He then became a consultant
for the Mitsubishi Company that took over the ownership of the Nagasaki shipbuilding and the Takashima
mine, and he helped to found the precursor of the Kirin Brewing Company. (The rst brewery for beer in
Japan was established inYokohama in 1872 by an Englishman, William Copeland.) Glover also negotiated
on behalf of the Meiji Government for the purchase of the Hong Kong Mint (which had proved surplus to
requirements): this was installed in Osaka and enabled the Government to unify the currency by issuing
its own silver coins.
Glovers role in helping to topple the shogunate may have been exaggerated; but he was certainly among
the rst to introduce Western-style technology to Japan and to assist inuential Japanese to gain a Western
education. Glover and his Japanese wife, Tsuru Awajiya, had two children and the family remained in


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

Japan, where their Nagasaki house is now a museum. (Though the couple have been linked to the story
behind Puccinis opera Madame Buttery, Tsuru was no geisha and Glover no runaway Pinkerton.)
Another early business venture was that of the Englishman Thomas Wright Blakiston (18321891), who,
with Scottish nancial backers, in 1863 set up the West Pacic Company Ltd. to exploit the rich timber
resources of the undeveloped northern island Hokkaido. Though the company failed in 1869, Blakiston
stayed on in Hakodate and became the leading authority on the birds of Hokkaido. The discontinuity in
ora and fauna between Honshu and Hokkaido is still known as the Blakiston line.
Soon, roads, railways, lighthouses, harbours and public buildings were built with input from Western
engineers and architects, and paid for by loans from Western banks. Several of these banks were Scottishowned, including that of the JardineMatheson Company. Prominent Scottish bankers in the early Meiji
years were John Robertson, who managed the Oriental Bank in Yokohama, and Alexander Allan Shand
(18441930), who rst worked for the Chartered Mercantile Bank in Yokohama. Shand, who was born in
Turriff, Aberdeenshire, was later employed by the Meiji governments Ministry of Finance to introduce
sound procedures into Japanese banking. Long after his return to London in 1878, where he held a senior
banking position, he was a trusted nancial adviser to the Japanese government.
William Walter Cargill (18131894), perhaps also a Scot, was rst an administrator for the Oriental
Banking Corporation and then railway director to the Meiji Government during 18721877 (until Inoue
Masaru, one of the Choshu ve, took over). As director, Cargill received the largest salary of any
foreigner, an astonishing $2000 per month, several times that of the Prime Minister. In comparison,
foreign engineers were typically paid between 400 and 800 (Mexican silver) dollars per month; while
Henry Dyer, as Principal and professor of the Imperial College of Engineering, received 660 yen per
month, and most of the professors 350 yen per month. Later, the salaries of Japanese-born professors
were about one third of this. (The exchange rate between yen and dollar was variable, but they were
probably of roughly equal value.)
Japans rst newspapers were begun by a Scot, a former naval ofcer John Reddie Black, who edited
an English-language weekly, the Japan Herald, briey in Nagasaki and from 1861 in Yokohama. In
1867, Black then launched a daily, the Japan Gazette, soon rivalled by the (still-existing) Japan Times.
Meanwhile, the lighter side of expatriate life in Japan was captured by an English artist and retired Army
captain, Charles Wirgman, who published and illustrated Japan Punch during 18621887.
With the large inux of foreigners after 1868, Western medicine became more widespread (though
even now this coexists with traditional oriental medicine). Western-style hospitals were opened, often in
association with Christian missions: these catered for foreigners and Japanese alike, but typically made
few Christian converts.
Among the medical men who came to Japan was Henry Faulds (18431930) who rst arrived in 1873
as a missionary of the United Presbyterian Church. Faulds was born in Beith, Ayrshire. From a poor
family, he took an Arts degree at Glasgow University and then trained in medicine at Andersons College,
Glasgow. After working in India with a Church of Scotland mission, he returned to Scotland to marry and
then sail to Japan to work in the foreign concession at Tsukiji (then just outside, but now in, Tokyo), where
there was a large mission hospital. Faulds was soon appointed honorary surgeon superintendent; and he
founded a medical school in 1876, where he lectured (in Japanese) and introduced the new antiseptic
technique of Joseph Lister. He established a school for the blind in 1878 and published a Bible with raised
letters. On returning to Britain, he wrote an account of his Nine Years in Nipon (Faulds, 1885), including
vivid observations of Japanese life and Japans natural history. Another claim to fame was his pioneering
work on ngerprints, suggested by his observation of ngermarks on Japanese pottery: he was the rst

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


to propose that these might be used for identication, but his ideas were not adopted at the time. Back
in England, he worked as a rather poorly paid doctor for another 30 years, until the age of 80, while
maintaining wide cultural interests that continued to embrace the Far East.
Other Scottish medical missionaries included Theobald A. Palm and his wife, who in 1874 set up
a small hospital and dispensary in Niigata on behalf of the Edinburgh Medical Missionary Society.
Other medical graduates of Scottish universities were William Willis, Joseph Bower Siddall and William
Renwick. Willis was an Edinburgh-trained Irishman who was in Japan during 18611877. He is credited
with establishing Japans rst surgical hospital, with fearlessly treating war casualties of both sides during
the Satsuma rebellion of 18761877, and with founding a smallpox hospital in Yokohama. Siddall, an
Aberdeen graduate who gained further experience at St Thomas Hospital in London, was appointed
surgeon to the British legation in Japan in 1868. He helped prevent a smallpox epidemic in 1871 by
administering a scheme of compulsory inoculation. Renwick, an Edinburgh graduate of 1870, worked as
a medical practitioner in several Japanese cities, including Yokohama, Osaka and Nagasaki: his corporate
employers included the Japanese Mint, the Imperial Railway and the Takashima coalmine.

3. Early students in Britain

A few years before the Meiji restoration, the Choshu ve, Ito Hirobumi, Inoue Kaoru, Inoue Masaru
(also known as Nomura Yakichi), Endo Kinsuke and Yamao Yozo, left Japan secretly in 1863. Their
voyage was arranged by William Keswick of Jardine, Matheson & Co., and they were met in London
by Hugh Mackay Matheson (18211898) of Matheson & Co. in London. A devout Presbyterian, Hugh
Matheson had refused to take part in the overseas companys opium activities. In London, he helped many
Japanese students, arranging college places and accommodation, and entertaining them in his home. Long
afterwards, Ito Hirobumi recalled that: I was one of Mr Mathesons boys. I owe him a great deal and I shall
never forget his home at Hampstead... (quoted in Checkland, 1989, p. 292, from Westminster Gazette, 4
March 1895). The Choshu ve all attended University College, London (or the school attached to it),
and later became distinguished national gures.
A friend of Mathesons, Alexander William Williamson, was the professor of chemistry at the College,
and acted as the students guardian there: he even arranged for three (Ito, Inoue K. and Yamao) to live in
his own home. These three stayed for just a year, but the others remained in England until 1868 to study
industrial techniques, Yamao going to Glasgow to study shipbuilding. Ito was a prominent member of the
Iwakura mission, later a government minister and eventually Prime Minister; Inoue K. and Yamao held
senior government posts; Inoue M. became chief of Japanese Railways; and Endo was responsible for
the Mint.
In 1865, Glover, in collusion with their daimyo, helped 14 young Choshu and Satsuma samurai to get
to Britain and France. Those who attended University College, London, were Kikuchi Dairoku and his
brother Mitsukuri Keigo, Terajima Munenori, Mori Arinori and Yoshida Kiyonari. The Satsuma students
were part of a delegation led by Godai Tomoatsu and Terajima Munenori, and were accompanied by
Ryle Holme, an English associate of Thomas Glover. (Mitsukuri became professor of Zoology at Tokyo
University; Terajima became a diplomat and served as Foreign Minister; both Mori and Kikuchi Dairoku
became Minister of Education.) During 18651870, over 20 Japanese enrolled at University College,
London, where Williamson exerted a benevolent inuence; and about 150 had come to Britain by August


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The youngest of the Satsuma group who surreptitiously left Kagoshima in 1865 was Nagasawa Kanaye,
then aged only 13. (Nagasawas true name was Isonaga Hikosuke: all of the group concealed their identities
on leaving Japan.) Perhaps because so young, he did not attend University College like the others. Instead,
after a brief stay in London, he was sent to Aberdeen in north-east Scotland. There, he lived in the home
of Thomas Glovers parents like an adopted son, attending the same school as their youngest son Alfred.
It is said that, for the rest of his life, he spoke English with a Scottish accent.
In 1867, Nagasawa visited the US with several other Japanese students under the patronage of Thomas
Lake Harris, the charismatic and autocratic leader of an exclusive religious sect, the Brotherhood of New
Life. Laurence Oliphant and his wealthy mother were adherents of this sect, and Oliphant seems to have
recruited the Japanese students, among them Nagasawa and Mori Arinori. In 1871, Nagasawa joined
Harris Brotherhood at Brocton in upper New York State, where he learned about viniculture. In 1875,
Harris expanded his activities to the better climate of Santa Rosa, California. A lavish settlement named
Fountaingrove was built, and Nagasawa was put in charge of establishing new vineyards. Soon, these
were among the most productive in California, and Fountaingrove wine was exported to Great Britain
and Japan as well as sold in the US.
Nagasawa served as Harris private secretary until, following adverse publicity in the local press, Harris
left Fountaingrove in 1892, when Nagasawa took command of all business activities. On Harris death in
1906, Nagasawa succeeded as master of Fountaingrove until his own death in 1934. Though he visited
Japan only rarely, Nagasawa assisted Japanese immigrants to the US, and he advised on exhibits at
international and domestic trade exhibitions. He was proud to receive two honours, in 1924 and 1928,
from the Emperor and Government of Japan (Kadota and Jones, 1990; Black 18801883; Sugiyama,
Kikuchi Dairoku (18551917), who attended University College school in 18671868, returned to the
college in 18711873, and was at St Johns College, Cambridge University during 18731877. There, he
graduated as 19th wrangler (i.e. 19th in order of merit, among the rst-class honours graduates). He was
Professor of Mathematics at the Imperial University (18771898), its President (18981901), Minister
of Education (19011903), and second President of Kyoto Imperial University (founded in 1897) during
Relatively few Japanese students of this time studied at Cambridge University, and most who did
so, like Kikuchi, were from aristocratic families, training to govern rather than become technologists.
Cambridge was an expensive place in which to study, and it then offered little or no practical instruction in
experimental science or engineering. Its primary aim was to provide future clergymen, schoolmasters and
gentlemen with a liberal education centring on the Greek and Roman classics, theology and, especially,
mathematics. In contrast, University College, London had been planned on the model of the Scottish
universities: it and the Scottish universities and colleges themselves were more appropriate choices for
those wishing to study science and technology. It has been argued that Kikuchis aristocratic background
and Cambridge training proved a disadvantage to him as Minister of Education, as these gave him little
sympathy for the idea of upward social mobility through education (Batholomew, 1989, pp. 147148).
Among other early students at Cambridge was Murakami Keijiro, son of Kuniyasu from Hiroshima
(called Moorakami in Cambridge records). He was admitted to Trinity College in August 1873 and so
was in the same year as Kikuchi Dairoku. He is recorded as A very promising mathematician. Recalled
to Japan by his Government after two years (Venn, 18521900). The reason for his recall is unknown.
The high costs at Cambridge may have been a factor, as some other students were recalled from Europe
around that time; or perhaps some complaint was made against him. His tutor at Trinity was the Scot,

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


James Stuart, who became professor of Mechanism and Applied Mechanics. In his Reminiscences, Stuart
describes the situation more fully:
One of the most remarkable pupils whom I came across in Trinity College was a Japanese, named
Murakami. He came to Cambridge, and coached for a year with one of the chaplains, who told me that
when he came to him he knew hardly any English, and absolutely nothing of Latin or mathematics.
When he entered for his entrance examination... he came out at the top, excluding those who had
already been abstracted by the scholarship examination. I long kept his mathematical papers because
they were so well done. He studied for the Mathematical Tripos, and there can be little doubt... that
he would have been one of the rst four or ve wranglers, but he was recalled by his Government
about the end of his second year. (Stuart, 1912, pp. 198199).
Stuart writes of Murakamis great distress at his recall, and even suggests that Murakami believed that
he would be expected to commit suicide on his return. But Stuarts Reminiscences were prepared in his
anecdotage and contain occasional exaggerations.
Murakami did not pursue a scientic career, but served as an administrator in the Imperial Navy,
becoming its chief nancial ofcer. In 1906, he was awarded the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising
Sun (probably for his role in the Russo-Japan war), and a year later was elected to the title of Baronthe
rank also held by Kikuchi. In 1919, Murakami was promoted to Vice Admiral (chujo) (Koyama, 1990,
pp. 8283).
Kikuchis 19th place at Cambridge was worthy rather than brilliant; and the fact that he published
no mathematical research reinforces this judgment. As he and Murakami belonged to rival Cambridge
colleges, they were probably not close friends. It is pertinent to ask whether Kikuchi would have been
appointed Professor of Mathematics at Tokyo if Murakami had come ahead of him.
Nevertheless, Kikuchi was a competent professor of mathematics before his elevation to still higher
positions. He wrote several textbooks in Japanese, mainly on geometry. One of these, The Elements of
Geometry, also appeared in English (Kikuchi, 1891). He was much inuenced by his Cambridge tutor,
the systematic but pedantic Isaac Todhunter, whose own textbooks were read in schools and universities
around the world. Some of Kikuchis notes from Todhunters classes are preserved in the archives of the
University of Tokyo (Barrow-Green, 2001).
Perhaps, the rst Japanese to receive an honorary degree from any British university was Hamao Arata,
who received an honorary LL.D. from Cambridge in 1887. He was the Superintendent, and later VicePresident and then President (18931897) of Tokyos Imperial University. The typically grandiloquent
Cambridge citation described him as one of the most enlightened among the leading inhabitants of the
land of the rising sun, and foremost among those who have endeavoured to introduce into Japan some of
the best elements of the civilization of the West (quoted from Venn, 19221954, the original being in

4. Lighthouses, roads and railways

Western experts in engineering and science were recruited to advise the Government, to lead major
construction projects and to train a generation of Japanese students who would become the new leaders
of their elds. For these European and American visitors, the experiences of traditional Japan must
have been vivid; and their legacy helped to shape modern Japan as a leading power in science and


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

technology. Known collectively as o-yatoi gaikokujin (honourable foreign employees), they were very
well paid but held only temporary contracts: the Meiji Governments intention was to dispense with
them as soon as they could be replaced by Japanese, but many formed a deep affection for Japan. It is
estimated that around 2400 foreigners were employed by the Meiji Government between 1868 and 1900,
the greatest numbers per year being during 18711879. Of these, nearly half were British, and nearly all
the remainder were from France, the US and Germany. Of the 360 employed in education, 105 were from
the US, 93 from Germany, 86 from Britain, and 39 from France. Below, we discuss only some of those
o-yatoi who came from Scotland or had close Scottish connections.
In the last year of the bakufu government, the British Board of Trade invited the famous Edinburgh
lighthouse engineers David and Thomas Stevenson to undertake the planning and installation of lighthouses, buoys and beacons to protect the shipping approaches to the various new treaty ports. In February
1868, the Stevensons appointed Richard Henry Brunton (18411901) as the project engineer. Brunton,
who came from Aberdeenshire, was an engineer with railway experience but had no previous familiarity
with lighthouse construction; accordingly, he and his two assistants, named Blundell and McVean, rst
undertook several months training with the Stevensons. They reached Japan in August 1868, with the
Meiji government newly in power and the lighthouse project thrown into doubt. After some delay, it was
approved following representations from Sir Harry Parkes, the inuential British Minister to Japan.
Brunton surveyed the coasts, decided on sites, and ordered through the Stevensons those materials that
were locally unavailable. These included cast metal frames, prisms, lenses, burners and lantern glass for the
lights; but good stone and wood were found nearby. (Later, more components were manufactured locally
in the workshops of the lighthouse authority.) With time to spare in the foreigners enclave of Yokohama
before his plans were approved by the Government and his supplies had arrived from Edinburgh, Brunton
embarked on several other enterprises. These included the drainage and macadamizing of Yokohamas
streets. (Macadamizing, invented around 1815 by the Scot, John Loudon McAdam, is a process of road
building that lays down successive layers of stones and gravel of gradually reducing size. The method is
still employed, as tar-macadam by adding tar to the upper layer.) Brunton was the rst to employ clay
pipes for drainage in Japan, the usual custom being to use lengths of bamboo. Unfortunately, his rst
pipes made by Japanese potters broke under the load of the roadway; but Brunton succeeded at the second
attempt. To make the roads, he had to order the manufacture of a heavy road roller, as none previously
existed in Japan. Brunton was also one of the guides in Britain of the Iwakura mission, being briey back
on furlough.
In all, Brunton and his team constructed 34 lighthouses, installed two lightships, 13 buoys and three
beacons, so making safe much of the previously perilous Japanese coastline. He was also responsible
for Japans rst telegraph lines, from Yokohama to Edo, from Osaka to Kyoto, and from the government
ofces to the Imperial Palace. He and his team were involved in surveying and preparing a new map of
Japan (1876), on the scale of 20 miles to one inch, which was published with Romanised script (preferred
by foreigners); he built the rst iron bridge in Japan, and was involved with the construction of about 40
public buildings. Brunton also submitted plans for many other improvements, including a piped water
supply, but most were ignored or misunderstood.
Bruntons great energy was matched by an impatient manner that did not endear him to those Japanese
ofcials whom he believed were obstructing his plans. But he had many obstacles to overcome, and
frustration was inevitable. (The differing cultural attitudes and expectations of foreign workers and
Japanese administrators are sensitively addressed by Checkland, 1985.) His two assistants resigned
after just a year, nding their salaries inadequate due to the high cost of European food and goods

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


(Checkland, 19811982). He complained to Sir Harry Parkes about the difculties of being an engineer
in Japan:
The nature of the duties disappoint him. He is required, owing to his being the only engineer, to do
triing pieces of work which perhaps years before had been given over to the juniors in the ofce.
On account of the want of many skilled foremen, he is often required personally to supervise work
and to explain the minutest details to men unwilling to execute them and to whom the work they are
engaged is perfectly new and uninteresting.
... a man who exchanges say, 300 a year at home for 800 a year here with the prospect of bettering
himself is grievously disappointed. (Fox, 1969, pp. 374375).
Though some may have been glad to see him leave Japan in 1875, Brunton had made a huge contribution.
Later, he continued his engineering work in India, where he died at the age of 60.
Bruntons own memoirs of Japan remained unpublished until recently. His characteristically downto-earth opinions included an uncomplimentary view of traditional Japanese houses: both a model of
simplicity and a pattern for discomfort in all seasons (Brunton, 1991, p. 11). But others disagreed.
For instance, when J.A. Ewing (see below) returned to his native Dundee in 1882 after a period in
Japan, he soon became involved with improving the sanitary conditions of the tenement homes of factory
workers, which provided a humiliating contrast to the clean and airy houses of the workers in Tokyo
(Hilken, 1967, p. 111).
Brunton was much helped by Captain Albert Richard Brown (18391913), the master of his rst
lighthouse tender, the Tabor. After some years as a ships captain, Brown taught in one of the Japanese
merchant navy schools that were set up in 1875. These hired mainly British staff, of whom many seem
to have been Scots: Checkland (1989, p. 66) gives the most inuential British names as G. Ramsay, A.F.
McNab, J. Ellerton, A.R. Brown, A. MacMillan, T.H. James, E.W. Haswell, H. Frazer, F.E. Cope, and J.
Blair. In 1885, Brown became the rst general manager of the Japan Mail Steamship Company [Nippon
Yusen Kaisha]; and, acting for the Mitsubishi company, he placed orders and supervised ship construction
in Britain. Back in Glasgow, Brown served as Honorary Japanese Consul from 1890 until his death in
1913, assisting and befriending many Japanese students who later held important posts in Japan, and
aiding visiting Japanese shipping agents and businessmen.
Another practising engineer with Scottish connections was Richard Vickers Boyle, an Irishman whose
forebears came fromAyrshire. He was in Japan from 1872 to 1877 with some English assistants, overseeing
the construction of railways. Previously, he had worked on other railway projects in Ireland, England,
Spain and India. Another Irish engineer, Edward Hazlitt Hunter, had a longer-term association with Japan.
He founded the Osaka Iron Works in the 1880s to build and repair ships; and he remained for over 50
years, with his Japanese wife, Ai. Their house in Kobe still survives as a museum, though not on its
original site.
Many more British engineers were recruited to work in Japan during the 1870s. Checkland (1989,
p. 49) observes that In 1874 there may have been ninety-four British railway engineers working in
Japan, out of a total of 104 foreigners. The best known of these is Edmund Morell (18411871), the
engineer of the rst railway from Shimbashi (Tokyo) to Yokohama begun in 1870. But Morell did not
survive to see it in operation, a victim to tuberculosis at the age of 30. A later Scottish engineer in Japan
was Charles Scott Meik (18531923), recruited in 1887 as Chief Engineer for Harbours and Rivers. Much
of his work was in the northern island of Hokkaido, formerly inhabited only by the primitive Ainu people,
but then being rapidly developed for agriculture (Checkland, 1985, p. 265).


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

Less visible in surviving records are the large numbers of British (including Scottish) workers recruited
in mundane capacities, such as lighthouse keepers, technicians, railwaymen, shipwrights and telegraph
operators: many are recorded only in the foreigners graveyards of Nagasaki, Yokohama and Kobe.
5. The University and the Engineering College
The University of Tokyo, later renamed the Imperial University, was founded in 1877, incorporating
some older establishments and with a miscellany of professors. Many of the initial appointments were
made haphazardly, as a result of chance contacts and encounters, and not all were well chosen. The rst
list of 15 professors of the Faculty of Science contains ve from the US, three from France, and two each
from Britain and Germany: several had previously worked for the colleges assimilated by the University.
There were also three Japanese professors: the London- and Cambridge-educated Kikuchi Dairoku in
Pure and Applied Mathematics, Yatabe Ryokichi in Botany, and Imai Iwao in metallurgy and German.
Another Japanese, Ito Keisuke, was an extraordinary professor of Botany. In addition, there were four
assistant professors and one lecturer, all Japanese.
The two British professors were Robert Henry Smith (18511914), professor of mechanical engineering from 1874 to 1878, and Robert W. Atkinson, professor of analytic and applied chemistry during
18741881. The Englishman Atkinson had been an outstanding student at University College, London
under A.W. Williamson. Both R.H. Smith and his successor J.A. Ewing studied engineering at Edinburgh
University under Fleeming Jenkin, who supported both appointments. On Smiths return to Britain he
became Professor of Engineering at Mason College, Birmingham, and in 1890 he was an unsuccessful
applicant for the Cambridge professorship that Ewing secured. (Early American science teachers in Japan
are discussed in Watanabe, 1996.)
The Imperial College of Engineering in Tokyo began earlier, in 1873, as an institution separate from the
University of Tokyo; but the two merged in 1886, when the College became the Faculty of Engineering
of the renamed Imperial University. The Engineering Colleges origins perhaps derive from a 1872
conversation between Ito Hirobumi and Glasgows Professor of Engineering, W.J. McQuorn Rankine,
during the Iwakura missions travels. In response to Itos request for a key person to give assistance to
Japan to build a steel works where weapons could be manufactured, Rankine advised that Japan rst
needed to train specialists in several elds, and so should have an institute which would train these men
(Checkland, 1989, p. 294). Within a year, the College had begun, and all its main staff were British.
Its Principal was the remarkable Henry Dyer (18481918). Born in Bothwell, Lanarkshire, the son
of an Irish iron-foundry labourer, Dyer had studied at evening classes at Andersons College, Glasgow,
while working as an engineering apprentice. He then gained a scholarship to Glasgow University, where
he completed a science degree. On graduating at the age of 25, he was immediately appointed by the
Iwakura mission as Professor of Engineering and Principal of the new college in Tokyo. He had been
recommended to Ito Hirobumi by W.J.M. Rankine. Arriving in Tokyo in 1873, Dyer received helpful
advice from the Minister of Public Works, Yamao Yozo, who was in overall charge of the project. In 1866,
Yamao had spent a year in Glasgow, working in a Clyde shipyard and taking evening courses along with
Dyer at Andersons College. With advice from Hugh Matheson (who had studied at Freiburg and the Ecole
Polytechnique in Paris) and probably from Ito Hirobumi, Dyer andYamao devised the six-year theoretical
and practical training course of the Imperial College, with all classes to be conducted in English. There
were two years of elementary foundational instruction, two years of scientic training, and two gaining
practical engineering experience.

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


Dyer appointed his staff wisely: they included William Edward Ayrton (natural philosophy and telegraphy), David Henry Marshall (mathematics, and later natural philosophy), Edward Divers (chemistry),
Edmund Mundy ([technical] drawing), and William Craigie (English language and literature, and Secretary to the College). These were later joined or replaced by John Perry (civil engineering, 18751878),
Thomas Alexander (civil engineering, 18781885), Arthur Watson Thomson (assistant in civil engineering, 18781881), Thomas Lomar Gray (assistant in telegraphy, 18781881), John Milne (geology,
18761885), and the brothers William Gray Dixon and James Main Dixon (English language and literature, 18761879 and 18801885: their names spelt Dickson in some sources). In the late 1880s, the
Edinburgh-born William Kinninmond Burton was a civil engineer at the Imperial University and a keen
Marshall, Craigie and J.M. Dixon had studied at the Scottish universities of Edinburgh, Aberdeen
and St Andrews, respectively; while W.G. Dixon, Alexander, Thomson and Gray all studied at Glasgow
University. Of the others, Ayrton studied at University College, London; Mundy at the Royal School of
Mines, London; Divers and Perry at Queens College, Belfast; Milne at Liverpool, then at Kings College
and the Royal School of Mines, London.
W.G. Dixons book, The Land of the Morning (1882), describes his time in Japan, including information
about the Imperial College of Engineering, and it is dedicated to present and former students of the College.
He later became a Presbyterian minister, serving in Australia and New Zealand. J.M. Dixon (18561933)
remained in Tokyo for 13 years, working for the Faculty of Literature of the University of Tokyo during
18861892. He later taught in universities in America and adopted US nationality. Their predecessor
as English professor, W. Craigie, suffered poor health and died in Scotland soon after leaving Japan. In
contrast, T. Alexander served for 34 years as Professor of Civil Engineering at Trinity College, Dublin;
and A.W. Thomson became Professor of Engineering at the Glasgow and West of Scotland College (the
successor of Andersons College). These two collaborated in writing several textbooks, and Thomson
later moved to become Professor of Engineering at Poona, India. Following unsuccessful applications for
chairs at Leeds in England, Galway in Ireland, and Auckland in New Zealand, T. Gray served as Professor
of Dynamic Engineering at the Rose Polytechnic Institute, Terre Haute, Indiana from 1888 until his death
in 1908 (Checkland, 1989, pp. 265266; Davidson, 1927, p. 180).
One of the students who studied English literature with J.M. Dixon at the Imperial University was
Natsume Soseki (18671916), who became Japans rst great novelist of modern times (and who had
harsh words about Dixons examinations: see Checkland, 1989, p. 267). During 19001903, Soseki spent
a not altogether happy time in London: for a change, he escaped to Scotland to visit a friend, John Henry
Dixon, probably a relative of his former teacher, at Pitlochry, Perthshire. (The Dixon familys large home,
Dundarrach House, is now a hotel and has a small display of Sosekis works. Sosekis visit inspired an
evocative essay, Old Days, describing the history and landscape of the surrounding area. Together with
professor Tatsumi Tomomasa, the present writer and his wife enjoyed attempting to translate this work.)
Cultural adjustment to the new pro-Western rgime was difcult for many of the early students; and
coping with their difculties must have challenged the British staff. Nearly all the students were from the
samurai lite, many from the Choshu and Satsuma clans. They had to cope with instruction conducted entirely in English, aimed at a precise scientic and practical training; and they had to perform experimental
tasks that they considered too menial for their status. Until sword wearing was banned in 1877 following
the unsuccessful Satsuma revolt, all samurai wore two swords, as it would have been dishonourable not to
do so. Disagreements between rival students could turn violent. It is said (on perhaps dubious authority:
see OxDNB Ayrton article) that, during Ayrtons rst term, there were two suicides and one killing, and

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


Ayrton had to discourage sword wielding by ring a large revolver into the ceiling (OxDNB, 2004). But,
within a few years, Ayrton reported that the students were much quieter in their manner, more earnest
in their studies and have greater application than those in the West (quoted in Checkland, 1989, p. 89).
The College was well equipped with laboratories (see below). Even more remarkable were the Colleges
engineering workshops at Akabane that provided the students with valuable practical experience. By 1881,
the Akabane Engineering Works issued a catalogue describing its large range of specialist equipment
and products: these included steam and marine engines, pumps, cranes, locomotive boilers, ornamental
ironwork, and even mills for crushing sugar cane. Some of these could be reproduced to order for
sale. During 18801881, the Akabane Works were removed from College control and transferred to the
Ordnance Department of the Navy, thereby fullling Itos earlier wish for a steel works where weapons
could be manufactured.

6. The scientists
Henry Dyer remained in Tokyo until July 1882, when he was succeeded as Principal by Edward Divers.
In recognition of his work, the Japanese government awarded Dyer the order of the Rising Sun (third class)
and made him honorary principal of the college. Dyers talents were less appreciated back in Scotland. He
twice failed to secure the chair of naval architecture at Glasgow University (perhaps unsurprisingly, for
he had little formal training and was not abreast of the latest advances); more surprisingly, he also failed
to be appointed rst Principal of the new Heriot-Watt College in Edinburgh, a post for which he was well
qualied (Checkland, 1989, pp. 183184). But he was an adviser to Andersons College, and he served,
unpaid, on the Glasgow School Board (Fig. 1). He remained a staunch supporter of Japan, and he helped
and befriended many Japanese students who came to Glasgow to study engineering and shipbuilding. He
also wrote works on international politics, in which he frequently expressed pro-Japanese sentiments.
William Edward Ayrton (18471908) and John Perry (18501920) were colleagues and close collaborators. Ayrton was born in London, where he studied mathematics and physics at University College. Perry
was born in Ireland, at Garvagh, co. Londonderry, to an Irish father and Scottish mother. He worked for
four years as a drawing-ofce apprentice before securing an exhibition (scholarship) to study engineering
under James Thomson at Queens College, Belfast. Both Ayrton and Perry were interested in telegraphy,
and both briey worked as assistants in Glasgow to Professor William Thomson (later Lord Kelvin and
brother of James Thomson). Though neither were Scots, the Scottish inuence on their scientic careers
was strong.
Ayrton described his year with Thomson as the inspiration of his life (OxDNB). Between 1868
and 1872, Ayrton spent time in India with the Indian Telegraph Service, then again worked briey
for W. Thomson and Fleeming Jenkin on a new transatlantic telegraph cable (the rst, to Thomsons
specications, having been triumphantly laid in 1866). Both Thomson and W.J.M. Rankine recommended
Ayrton for his Tokyo appointment. Ayrton was a demanding and critical teacher, who enthused the best
of his students by involving them in group research projects. Soon, he
secured unprecedentedly lavish nance from the Meiji exchequer for a palatial new laboratory,
although the execution of his designs brought him into considerable conict with government ofcials and workmen. When it opened in 1877 its facilities and equipment compared favourably with
contemporary laboratories in Britain and served as a model for several later institutions. (OxDNB).

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


Fig. 1. Engraving of Henry Dyer as Chairman of Glasgow School Board in 1914. From The Bailie, 84 (no. 2166); also reproduced
in Checkland (1989), facing p. 170.

Ayrtons wife, Matilda, also worked to benet the community, teaching midwifery to Japanese women.
(Later, she completed a medical doctorate at the Sorbonne in Paris; but she died from tuberculosis in July
1883.) At odds with the Meiji authorities, Ayrton left Japan in 1878, his wife having done so the year
before because of ill-health. In 1879, he became City and Guilds professor of physics (later of electrical
engineering) at Finsbury, London, rst operating in borrowed premises. In 1883, these were transformed
into the well-equipped Finsbury Technical College. In 1885, Ayrton moved to the new City and Guilds
Central Institution at South Kensington (later incorporated into Imperial College, London); and in the
same year he married his second wife Hertha Marks. She had been one of the rst women to study
mathematics at Cambridge and she collaborated with her husband on electrical researches.
During 18711873, John Perry taught mathematics and physics at Clifton College, Bristol, where he
seems to have had trouble in imposing discipline on his classes. He then worked for a year in Glasgow as
William Thomsons assistant, when Thomson recommended him for the professorship in civil engineering
at the Imperial Engineering College in Tokyo. Perry enthused that: When I arrived in Japan in 1875, I
found a marvellous laboratory, such as the world had not seen before (Checkland, 1989, p. 85, quoting
1910 art. by Perry). There, he and Ayrton undertook collaborative research, mainly on electricity, that
resulted in a stream of publications. Ayrton and his students installed the rst electric light in Japan,
in 1878 at Tokyos central telegraph station; and Henry Dyer introduced the rst telephone, though its
scope was very limited. Though James Clerk Maxwell, another Scot then professor in Cambridge and
the originator of modern electromagnetic theory, did not always agree with Ayrton and Perrys ndings,


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

he was impressed enough by their energy and prolic output to say that they threatened to displace the
centre of electrical development... quite out of Europe and America to a point much nearer to Japan
(OxDNB, Perry art., quoting Electrician 2 (1879), 271272).
On his return to London in 1879, Perry rst worked for a telegraphic company, then in 1882 was
appointed professor of mechanical engineering at Finsbury Technical College in north London, where
Ayrton was already professor of applied physics. There, the two resumed their research collaboration,
producing numerous electrically powered inventions (including a tricycle) and designing widely used
instruments such as ammeters, voltmeters, and domestic power-meters (but the two missed a fortune by
failing to patent this last invention). They were also involved in one of the rst big projects to install electric
lighting, at the Grand Hotel at Londons Charing Cross. Perry also joined Fleeming Jenkin, Edinburghs
professor of engineering, in setting up a Telepherage Company, to promote a system for transporting
goods over short distances by wires: this was widely adopted in the USA but less so in Great Britain.
Later, it was much used for ski-lifts.
During 18961913, Perry served as professor of mathematics and mechanics at the Royal College
of Science and the School of Mines in London (which became part of Imperial College). There, he
controversially campaigned for the reform of mathematics teaching, arguing against the prevailing view
that Euclids geometry should remain the cornerstone of mathematics instruction. He maintained that
non-specialists should instead be taught in a way that emphasised the usefulness of mathematics. This
approach was successfully followed in his popular textbook Calculus for Engineers (1896 and later
editions). He had already promoted these ideas in Japan, where he is still remembered as a pioneer in
mathematics education.
Perry was elected a fellow of the Royal Society in 1885, and he was awarded several honorary degrees.
He supported the Institution of Electrical Engineers, the Physical Society, and the British Association for
the Advancement of Science: he held the presidency of the rst two societies for a year, and served for a
time as treasurer of the last.
The rst mathematics professor, David Henry Marshall (18481932), published relatively little, and his
few scientic papers were on physics rather than mathematics. Three of these appeared in the Proceedings
of the Royal Society of Edinburgh during 18721873, one in collaboration with Cargill Knott. These
describe experiments on the effects of heat on magnetism and on electrical conductivity, carried out in
P.G. Taits Edinburgh laboratory. From Japan, he returned briey to Edinburgh in 1881. In the next year,
he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and he was appointed Professor of Physics
at Queens University, Kingston, Ontario in Canada, a post that he held until his retirement in 1907.
An 1882 joint paper (with C.M. Smith and R.T. Omond) in the Edinburgh Proceedings dealt with the
inuence of increased pressure in lowering the point of maximum density of water; and a nal joint paper
(with W.L. Goodwin), on the physical constants of solutions appeared in the 1884 Report of the British
Association. In Kingston, he published an Introduction to the Science of Dynamics (1898).
According to Marshalls obituarist: He enjoyed life to the full; he gloried in his walking powers.
He saw the most attractive parts of Japan, speaking the language uently (R.T.S., 19311932). His
notes of journeys in 1876 and 1878 were later reprinted, in edited form, in the Asiatic Society of Japan
Transactions (Marshall, 1888, 1889). He also accompanied his colleague W.G. Dixon on the travels
described in the latters The Land of the Morning (Dixon, 1882). For the rest of his life, he remained
an indefatigable traveller, who sailed round the world four times. On one of these journeys, he landed
in Samoa, to be greeted warmly by the ailing writer Robert Louis Stevenson, whom he had tutored in
Edinburgh. During his 25-year retirement, he lived by the shore of Lake Ontario.

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


James Alfred Ewing (18551935) was the youngest of three sons of a Free Church of Scotland minister in Dundee. He received his early education in that city, before gaining a scholarship to Edinburgh
University. There, he studied engineering with H.C. Fleeming Jenkin and natural philosophy with Peter
Guthrie Tait, who both recognized his talent. Both Jenkin and Tait were close research collaborators of
William Thomson of Glasgow. Jenkin and Thomson were involved with laying submarine telegraph cables for the Great Western Telegraph Company, and Ewing was recruited to assist with this work, joining
cable-laying expeditions to South America and so delaying the completion of his Edinburgh degree till
1878. He briey taught engineering at the Watt Institute in Edinburgh; but, at Fleeming Jenkins home,
Ewing was introduced to a Japanese ofcial who was looking for a professor of mechanical engineering
and physics at the Imperial University in Tokyo. On Jenkins recommendation, Ewing was appointed,
with a three-year contract (later extended to ve), starting in 1878.
In 1883, Ewing returned to his native city as the rst professor of engineering at the new University
College, Dundee. In 1889, he failed to gain the professorship of engineering at Glasgow, following the
resignation of Rankines successor, James Thomson. But in the next year he was appointed professor of
mechanism and applied mechanics at Cambridge University, in succession to another Scot, James Stuart.
There, he was also a fellow of Kings College. Emphasising, like Stuart, the importance of laboratory
work, he succeeded where Stuart had failed in persuading a reluctant Senate to institute a mechanical
sciences tripos (essentially a degree in engineering) in 1892, and a new laboratory was founded two years
later. The new tripos was a great success, and student numbers grew rapidly. In contrast to his periods in
Tokyo and Dundee, Ewing then had little time for research, but he wrote textbooks on The Steam Engine
and The Strength of Materials. His course of public lectures on refrigeration at the Royal Institution in
London in 1897 eventually led to a 1908 work on The Mechanical Production of Cold.
In 1899, he turned down an offer of the prestigious post of director of the National Physical Laboratory.
But, in 1903, he was recruited by the Admiralty as director of naval education, responsible for implementing a new scheme for training of naval ofcers, with greater emphasis on science and engineering.
From 1906, he also served on the Ordnance Board, involved with improving explosives. Following the
outbreak of war with Germany in 1914, Ewing led a group of codebreakers, that was instrumental in
deciphering much valuable military intelligence. Appointment as Principal of Edinburgh University followed in 1916: there, until his retirement in 1929, he led an expansion of the University, creating 13 new
professorships and instituting the Ph.D. degree for postgraduate research. Ewings many public honours
included a knighthood, the freedom of the cities of Edinburgh and Dundee, honorary degrees from seven
British universities, medals from the Royal Society and the Royal Society of Arts, and the Japanese order
of the Precious Treasure.
While in Japan, in 1881 Ewing made one of the earliest discoveries of hysteresis (an expression which
he coined from the Greek verb meaning to be late), in experiments on the thermoelectric effect in metals
under applied stress; and, in the next year, he observed that the area of the hysteresis loop during repeated
magnetization and demagnetization of iron gave a measure of the work done during each cycle. Back in
Dundee, Ewing continued his experimental work on magnetic hysteresis, and in 1885 published a long
paper Experimental researches in Magnetism in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society
(Ewing, 1885). This work on hysteresis was profoundly important for physics and for many applications
in electrical engineering.
In Japan, Ewing, like Perry, also investigated the earthquakes that were a regular occurrence. He joined
his nearby colleagues at the Imperial College of Engineering, the Englishman John Milne (18501913,
Professor of Mineralogy, Geology and Mining, 18761895) and the Glasgow-trained Thomas Gray (In-


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

structor in Telegraph Engineering, 18781881), to build a seismological observatory. There, they installed
a novel seismograph that could make a continuous record of the earths movements. These researches
were rst published in the Memoirs of the Science Department of the University of Tokyo in 1883.
Ewings students included Tanakadate Aikitsu, Fujisawa Rikitaro, Sakai Saho, Nomura Rintaro, Godai
Ryusaku, Tsuchida Tetsuo and Tanaka Shohei, who all went on to become distinguished scientists or
After Ewings departure, the seismological work was ably continued by Milne and Ewings successor,
Cargill Gilston Knott, along with some other outstanding students, notably Sekiya Seikei and Omori
Fusakichi. Sekiya Seikei (18551896) became the worlds rst professor of seismology when appointed
to a newly created chair in the Imperial University in 1889. Omori Fusakichi was his assistant during
18911895, then spent some years, 18951897, in Italy and Germany, before succeeding Sekiya in 1897
on the latters early death (Davidson, 1927, pp. 208210).
The Liverpool-born John Milne has rightly been called the father of modern seismology. He wrote
many papers on his work in Japan, and a textbook on Earthquakes and other Earth Movements (1886); and
he did much to encourage others to study seismology. On returning to England in 1895 with his Japanese
wife, Milne built a seismological observatory near their home on the Isle of Wight, where he continued
his work. By 1896, Milne had rened the apparatus to be able to detect and record major earthquakes
anywhere in the world. On Milnes departure from Japan, the Emperor awarded him the Order of the
Rising Sun (third class).
In his History of Seismology, Charles Davidson (1927, p. 177) wrote that
For the introduction of new methods of study and of a new spirit infused into seismology, we are
indebted to the small band of early British teachers in Japan, to J.A. Ewing,... T. Gray... and above
all, to J. Milne... It is not too much to claim that Milne lifted the science to an altogether different
and higher plane.
Cargill Gilston Knott (18561922) was born in Valleyeld, Midlothian. On graduating from Edinburgh
University in 1876, he became a research assistant to Peter Guthrie Tait, Edinburghs professor of natural
philosophy. There, he worked in an ill-equipped attic, receiving in 1879 a D.Sc. for his researches
on contact electricity. As a student, he knew both J.A. Ewing and D.H. Marshall, who also worked in
Taits attic laboratory and went to Tokyo. In 1883, Knott played a leading part in the establishment of the
Edinburgh Mathematical Society, becoming its rst secretary and treasurer. On Ewings return to Scotland
in that same year, the Rector of Tokyo University asked William Thomson of Glasgow to nominate for
appointment one of as high scientic talent and standing as possible (Checkland, 1989, p. 181). Both
Thomson and Ewing unhesitatingly recommended Knott as professor of physics.
Knott held the post during 18831891, and in 1885 married Mary Dixon, a sister of the professor of
English at the Imperial College of Engineering.A few years before Knotts arrival, the Tokyo Mathematical
Society had been founded in 1877, some six years before its Edinburgh counterpart. At rst, this was
supported equally by Western-style mathematicians and wasan practitioners. But, in 1884, the society was
renamed the Tokyo Mathematico-Physical Society, and the part played by wasan mathematicians soon
declined (Sasaki, 1994).The change of emphasis was led by Kikuchi; but it is surely no coincidence that
Knott had recently arrived as the new professor of physics, having just set up the Edinburgh Mathematical
On returning to Edinburgh, Knott was immediately appointed by Tait to a newly created lectureship, and
he was later promoted to reader but never to professor. He had probably hoped to become Taits successor

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


in 1901; but the job went instead to another of Taits former students and collaborators, Canadian-born
James MacGregor, who had been professor of physics at Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia.
Knotts main teaching duties at Edinburgh were in applied mathematics, on which he gave a regular 50-lecture course. (This was separate from the courses taught by the Department of Mathematics
headed by George Chrystal until 1912 and then by Edmund Whittaker. After Knotts time, this course
developed into one on mathematical physics.) From 1906, he was also put in charge of new teaching
laboratories; and he gave valuable service as an advisor to students. He was an active member of the
Royal Society of Edinburgh, which he served for many years as Council member and General Secretary;
he twice served years as President of the Edinburgh Mathematical Society; and he was President of the
Scottish Meteorological Society. In 1916, he was awarded an honorary LL.D. by the University of St
Andrews, and he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 1920, just two years before his
In Japan, Knott was immediately attracted to the researches on seismology already in progress, and
he gave these a sounder physical and theoretical basis that included Fourier analysis of earthquake
records. His analyses, which were continued on his return to Edinburgh, led to useful results on the
internal composition of the earths interior, and inspired later theoretical studies of seismological importance. A major paper was his The Propagation of Earthquake Vibrations through the Earth, and
Connected Problems (Knott, 1900). He also wrote a more general work, The Physics of Earthquake
Phenomena (1908), based on a lecture course delivered, rather surprisingly, at the United Free Church
College in Aberdeen. (But Knott had close Free Church afliations, and some of his family had served as
A 1950s monograph (Ewing et al., 1957, p. 74) credits Knott with the rst statement of the correct
equations for reection and refraction of elastic waves at a plane interface between differing media (though
there is an earlier analogy in optics). By then Knotts achievement had become a historical note; and not
one of the other founders of seismology is even mentioned in this monograph!
But Knotts major research was undoubtedly that on magnetism. As well as P.G. Tait, an early inuence
had been George Chrystal, Edinburghs Professor of Mathematics; and Knotts interest was reinforced
by Ewings legacy in Tokyo, where several young Japanese were working in this area. Knott provided
leadership and support for this group, and much good research was done on the relationship between
magnetism and applied strains in metals. In 1887, he organised a major magnetic survey of Japan,
supported by a group of students. Together with his outstanding student Nagaoka Hantaro, Knott covered
the area north of Tokyo, and he delegated that south of Tokyo to his equally brilliant assistant Tanakadate
Aikitsu. The results of the three-month survey were published in the Journal of the College of Science of
the Imperial University (Knott and Tanakadate, 1889).
Knott was also an advocate of quaternions, the mathematical system invented by William Rowan
Hamilton and popularised by P.G. Tait as a natural notation for much of mathematical physics. Knott
inherited Taits mantle as the main proponent of this system, arguing against the supporters of vector
calculus who eventually prevailed after major controversy (Crowe, 1967).
Knott was a prolic author of scientic papers, mainly on magnetism, earthquakes and quaternions,
articles for the Encyclopaedia Britannica and Chambers Encyclopaedia, and some magazine articles
on Japanese themes. The last include the abacus, the early surveyor and cartographer Ino Chukei (Ino
Tadataka), Japanese musical scales, and The Highways and Homes of Japan. (A list of Knotts publications, and the photograph reproduced in Fig. 2, are given in his obituary notice for the Royal Society of
Edinburgh (Whittaker 19221923).


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

Fig. 2. A late photograph of C.G. Knott, from Whittaker (19221923) facing p. 237, courtesy of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

In addition to his book on earthquake phenomena already mentioned, Knott wrote two other textbooks,
Electricity and Magnetism (1893) and Physics (Elementary) (1897); he prepared a revised (third) edition
of Kelland and Taits Quaternions (1904); and he edited a booklet of Four-gure Mathematical Tables
much used in Scottish schools until the 1960s. His Memoir of Professor P.G. Tait (Knott, 1911) is the
standard biographical source, prepared as a supplement to Taits collected scientic papers; and he edited
the Collected Scientic Papers of the Late Dr John Aitken, F.R.S. (1922) and Edinburghs Place in
Scientic Progress (Knott, 1921).
In 1914 Knott was a leading light in organising a meeting to mark the 300th anniversary of the publication of John Napiers revolutionary work on logarithms, Mirici Logarithmorum Canonis Descriptio.
Napier had lived at Merchiston Castle, near (now in) Edinburgh, and his book had been printed in the city.
At this meeting, Knott tried hard, but unsuccessfully, to revive plans to publish the mammoth logarithmic
and other tables constructed by another former Edinburgh citizen, Edward Sang (18051890), and he
edited the resulting Napier Tercentenary Memorial Volume (Knott, 1915).
Knotts scientic output and services to education surpassed those of many university professors. His
relative lack of advancement must have been associated with a desire to remain in Edinburgh: there was
then only one professor for each subject, competitively contested. The irony of J.A. Ewings appointment
as Principal of Edinburgh University in 1916, when Knott was still a lecturer, would not have escaped

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


7. Japanese researchers in Scotland

After the Imperial College of Engineering and the University of Tokyo had functioned for a few years,
some of the best graduates went abroad for further advanced study and research, and later returned to
important positions in Japan. It is not surprising that many went to Glasgow, for several of their teachers
had close Glasgow connections, and Glasgow was then a major centre for engineering and physics. During
the celebrations for his 80th birthday in 1904, William Thomson, by now Lord Kelvin, received a telegram
signed by six Japanese who had all worked with him: Masuda, Taniguchi, Watanabe, Mano, Goto and
Tanakadate. These six had also visited Germany, as also did Nagaoka Hantaro, who attended lectures by
Hermann von Helmholtz, Ludwig Boltzmann and Max Planck.
Watanabe Kaichi (18581932) graduated from the Imperial College of Engineering in 1883, attended
Glasgow University in 1884, then worked for the company of Benjamin Baker, designers of the Forth
Bridge near Edinburgh. Its famous pioneering cantilever construction is modelled in a photograph from
the time (Fig. 3): the person in the centre is Watanabe. His later engineering work in Japan concerned
public works and railways. Few Japanese students went to Edinburgh University: but one, Sugi Koichiro,
certainly studied engineering there in the early 1870s.
Between 1878 and 1882, Tanakadate Aikitsu (18561952) was a student of Ewing and of the American
Professor of Physics, Thomas Mendenhall, and Mendenhalls successor, Yamakawa Kenjiro. Tanakadate

Fig. 3. Photograph (circa 1887; from Mackay, 1993, p. 16, courtesy of H.M.S.O.) illustrating the cantilever principle of the Forth
Bridge. The central gure is Watanabe Kaichi, who worked for the designers Benjamin Baker & Co. The arms and sticks held
by the seated men act as main structural members, supporting the central load of Watanabe. The actual bridge is pictured above


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

was then appointed rst as lecturer and later as assistant professor; and in 18871988 he collaborated
with Knott on the magnetic survey of Japan. In 1888, he went to Glasgow to work for two years with
William Thomson, and then on to Berlin for a further year. On his return to Tokyo, he became Professor
of Physics and later Director of the Physical Institute at the Imperial University. His time with Thomson
was the most crucial of his career. A great admirer of Thomson (later Lord Kelvin), his interests similarly
combined science and practical applications, and he soon became the best-known Japanese physicist of
his day. (So much did he model himself on Kelvin that his students are said to have nicknamed him Lord
Kelvin.) And Kelvins respect for Tanakadate ensured that all the latters students who visited Kelvins
laboratory received a warm welcome.
Knotts former student, Nagaoka Hantaro (18651950), chose instead to study in Berlin, Munich and
Vienna (when he was unimpressed by the elderly Helmholtz and the young Planck). And Ewings student,
Tanaka Shohei, also received funding to study musical acoustics in Germany, presumably with Helmholtz.
The young and brash Nagaoka wrote to Tanakadate: There is no reason why the whites should be so
supreme at everything... I hope we shall be able to beat those (pompous) people in the course of 10 or 20
years... (quoted in Checkland, 1989, pp. 220221). He duly became a Professor of Physics at the Imperial
University (19011925). Much later, in 1903, he proposed an original model of atomic structure with
electrons moving in a circular path around a central positive charge: though few in Japan or elsewhere
took much notice, Ernest Rutherford later admitted that this partly anticipated his own acclaimed work.
One of the rst and ablest graduates of the Imperial College of Engineering was Shida Rinzaburo
(18551892), who was taught by Ayrton and Dyer. After graduating in 1879, he carried out electrical
researches with William Thomson in Glasgow, and he too visited Germany. In 1883 he returned to the
Imperial College of Engineering as Professor of Natural Philosophy and did much to establish electrical
engineering in Japan. Sadly, he died of tuberculosis at the early age of 36.
8. Discussion
Within a remarkably short time, the Meiji governments objective of replacing the o-yatoi gaikokujin
with its own nationals was successfully accomplished. Yamakawa, Shida, Tanakadate, Nagaoka, Sekiya
and Omori were research-oriented professors of physics, engineering and seismology; and Kikuchi a welltrained mathematician destined for a high political role. Likewise, Sakurai Joji, a student of Williamson
at University College, London, who became professor of chemistry at the University of Tokyo in 1882,
later became a Privy Councillor. By the late 1880s, few foreign teachers of science remained.
Japanese engineering has been a great success, driving the country to its present position as a major
economic and manufacturing power. It is ironic, but perhaps inevitable, that Japans advance in large measure led to the demise of heavy industry and ship building in Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom,
from where so many of the o-yatoi came. Once the engineering heart of the British Empire, Glasgow and
its ports are now minor players. Economic forces have played a dominant part; and Japanese economists
ably learned from another Scot, Adam Smith, whose Wealth of Nations (1776) laid the foundations of
modern economics. (This was one of several works by Scottish authors available from Maruzens Tokyo
bookshop in 1876: see Checkland, 2003, p. 63.)
Another reason for Japans continuing engineering successes is the high prestige that still attaches to
the subject at university. While Faculties of Engineering in Britain struggle to recruit good students, those
in Japan continue to attract many of the best. The reasons are partly historical and cultural. Engineering
came late to British universities, particularly at Oxford and Cambridge where it was long considered

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


an unsuitable activity for a gentleman. Even today, the subject still suffers from intellectual snobbery in
some quarters. It is signicant that many of the early British engineers (including several who went to
Japan) were self-made men from humble backgrounds.
In contrast, in Japan, engineering was a key component of higher education from the beginning of the
Meiji period, and the rst students came from the social lite of samurai. Once they had overcome their
initial aversion to manual labour, the profession of engineer attained high prestige. This was enhanced
by the strong links between pure science and practical engineering that were pioneered by the early
teachers and researchers. Another cultural factor was the early acceptance in Japan that higher education
should be used to benet the nation, rather than simply provide a pathway to personal satisfaction.
Nowadays, it is hard to credit that during the Meiji period Japans major export was its decorative arts
and crafts, and that it was largely through these artifacts that Japan became known in the West. Sometimes
simple science and technology were combined with artistic skill to create distinctive objects of beauty,
which impressed early visitors to Japan much as they do today. Some of the early scientists, doctors and
engineers who visited Japan were collectors and connoisseurs of Japanese and Chinese art. Western artists
were soon inuenced by those of Japan, and vice versa (Bowring and Kornicki, 1993; Livingstone and
Parry, 2005; Lambourne, 2005).
The major contributions of Scots in Japan are apparent from the above. The merchants of the Jardine
Matheson company, the wheeling-and-dealing Thomas Blake Glover and the early bankers John Robertson
and Alexander Allan Shand were motivated in part by nancial gain for themselves and their companies;
but there is no doubt that they took pains (and in Glovers case, risks) to secure advantages for the Japanese
whom they helped. Glover was deeply involved in the dangerous game of Japanese politics, and he settled
in Japan with a Japanese wife. Hugh Matheson in London (who never visited Japan) took a real personal
interest in the Japanese students entrusted to his care; and A.R. Brown, former ships captain and teacher
in Japans merchant navy schools, assisted many Japanese when Honorary Consul in Glasgow.
Some, like Brunton, who went to Japan as engineers to design and build modern facilities, were well
paid for their hard labours, but had little affection for the country and people (and were disliked in return);
others left Japan with broken health, or died there, often of tuberculosis (e.g. W. Craigie, E. Morell, Matilda
Ayrton; but this disease ravaged northern Europe as well). Some developed an appreciation for traditional
Japanese arts and crafts and a regard for the Japanese way of life, and a few learned the language to a
high level.
The early teachers at the University and the Engineering College in Tokyo were in a unique position
to dene the course of Japanese science and technology. And they, in turn, had been inuenced by others
who did not set foot in Japan. Dyer, Ayrton, Perry, Marshall, Ewing and Knott were all products of
the Glasgow and Edinburgh scientic network: at its centre was the remarkable William Thomson in
Glasgow, comfortably straddling natural philosophy, engineering and mathematics. The engineers were
W.J.M. Rankine and then James Thomson in Glasgow, and Fleeming Jenkin in Edinburgh; while P.G.
Tait and George Chrystal were Edinburghs professors of Natural Philosophy and Mathematics.
The fundamental research interests of W. Thomson and Tait lay mainly in electricity and magnetism,
uid dynamics, thermodynamics and energy, the aether theory of light, and the related theory of vortex
atoms. And W. Thomsons electrical interests, in collaboration with Fleeming Jenkin, made him the
world expert on telegraphy. Thomsons laboratory designed many sensitive electromagnetic measuring
instruments and acquired many patents. Rankine and James Thomson also had theoretical interests in
aether theory, thermodynamics and uid dynamics, as well as practical involvement in shipbuilding and
turbines. Chrystal, apart from his interest in algebra, had trained in physics in Clerk Maxwells Cambridge


A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48

laboratory, where he studied electricity and magnetism. And he later designed instruments to measure
and analyse long standing waves (seiches) on the Scottish lochs [lakes].
W. Thomsons and Taits emphasis on laboratory work was quite unusual at this time, with facilities
made available only to their ablest students; and Thomsons combination of theory and technological
application was even rarer. This is precisely the outlook that Dyer and Ayrton took to Tokyo, that led
to the building of their splendid laboratory at the College of Engineering, to the importance placed
on telegraphy, and to the Akabane works where real engineering production took place. The research
topics studied by Ayrton, Perry, Ewing, Marshall and Knott also derived from their Scottish experience:
it is no accident that they investigated electricity and magnetism, and constructed their own measuring
instruments. Even the development of the new subject of seismology owes something to this background:
designing new measuring instruments was a familiar part of their training, and elastic waves are closely
connected to light waves in an elastic aether (then familiar to students of optics) and to surface waves
on water.
It is also noteworthy that Ayrton, Perry, Ewing, Milne and Knott all involved their students in research
projects, at a time when others considered that Japanese youth were uninterested in, or incapable of,
such activities. In doing so, they were following the excellent example set by William Thomson and
Peter Guthrie Tait. Such projects doubtless did much to benet staff-student relations at a time when
resentment of the foreign incomers must have run deep.
Of the above, only Ewing can be said to have had an illustrious career on returning to Britain. The
key turning point was his move to Cambridge; and much credit is due to his diplomacy and persistence
in developing there a viable engineering course in the face of reactionary opposition. The careers of
Ayrton and Perry were also fairly successful; they too fought to change outmoded educational attitudes
and emphasised the importance of experimental science. T. Alexander and A.W. Thomson, respectively,
became professors of engineering in Dublin and Glasgow (later Poona, India). J. Milne seems to have
been happy to retire to the Isle of Wight as a private scholar with his private laboratory; and Knott was
apparently content to lecture in Edinburgh for many years, unpromoted and perhaps undervalued. Others,
including Gray, Marshall, and both Dixons, obtained posts abroad. Henry Dyers failure to nd suitable
employment remains puzzling, following his success as college head in Tokyo. It has been suggested that
William Thomsons support for him was less than wholehearted; and his original mentor, Rankine, had
died young. If Dyer wished to remain in Scotland, there were few suitable openings, and he seems to
have been wealthy enough by then happily to accept unpaid advisory appointments, and to ll his spare
time with writing.
One of the most able of students, and also one of the most nationalistic, was Nagaoka Hantaro. But
even he would surely have admitted that it was largely due to the efforts of those early teachers that his
hope to be able to beat those (pompous) people in the course of 10 or 20 years... was not a forlorn one.
Around the beginning of the 20th century, a commonly held Japanese opinion was that Western civilisation was materialistic and mechanistic, whereas Eastern civilisation was metaphysical and spiritual,
with greater humanity and sense of duty. But Tanakadate, in a 1915 lecture to the House of Peers, dissented from this categorisation, rightly questioning whether it is all right to interpret Eastern and Western
civilizations in such an elementary manner (quoted in Koizumi, 1975, p. 81). Tanakadate commanded
widespread respect for his open-mindedness as well as for his many scientic achievements. His advocacy
of the Romanisation of written Japanese did not nd favour. But, as the father of Aeronautical Science
in Japan, he founded a strong tradition that extended through the generations to the late Professor Imai,
honoured in this volume, and down to the present day.

A.D.D. Craik / Fluid Dynamics Research 39 (2007) 24 48


9. Bibliographical note
The scholarly literature on interactions between Japan and the West is huge, and this article is a mere
selection and summary, based on secondary sources in English rather than on original documents. I have
not attempted to identify in the text the source of every piece of information; but all direct quotations
are referenced. All the evidence can be found in the references cited below, much of it in the works of
Fox, Jones, Brock and Checkland and easily tracked down from their indexes: these works in turn list
many other primary and secondary sources. Only the publications of Checkland (who was herself based
in Glasgow, with ready access to many original documents there) concentrate on Scottish contributions
per se. Another useful source is the recent Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (OxDNB for short,
also available on-line to subscribers): articles on various individuals, with their authors, are listed together
I thank Professors Kambe and Kida for inviting me to contribute this article to the present commemorative volume in honour of the late Professor Imai. I am most grateful to Kyoto University for its welcome,
during 19982003, when my wife was Professor of Classics there. Particular thanks are due to Professor
H. Okamoto of R.I.M.S. and Professor M. Funakoshi of the Graduate School of Informatics and Complex
Dynamical Systems for arranging my visits. Professor Okamoto also commented most helpfully on a draft
of this paper, and provided additional information on Cargill Knott and on the early students Murakami
and Nagasawa. Useful comments were also received from Emeritus Professor T. Tatsumi, Professor T.
Nakatsukasa, Professor C. Latimer and the referees, to whom I am most grateful.
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Press and Cambridge University Library, Cambridge, UK.
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