Rinji (the Emperors command) (綸旨)

Rinji meant a document of decree issued by Kurodo (Chamberlain) in response to the Emperor's intention.

Rinji ("綸旨" in Chinese characters) originally stood for "Ringen no Mune" ("綸言の旨" in Chinese characters), and meant the Emperor's intention itself; however, in and after the mid Heian period, Rinji came to mean hosho (a document for informing lower rank people of the decision of upper people such as an emperor or shogun) which contained elements of an official document created and issued by Kurodo based on an imperial decree given orally by the Emperor.

Shosho (an imperial edict, decree) and chokusho (an official document issued by the Emperor) were issued by Dajokan (Grand Council of State) through official procedures after the imperial edict was informed to two or more government officials such as Kurodo, Shokei (court nobles who work at the Imperial Court as high rank post) and benkan (officials of the Dajokan), while rinji was issued by Kurodo through more simplified procedures, in the name of Kurodo as containing the phrase "The imperial edict is as follows" (the phrase "蒙綸旨云/被綸言云" (the following imperial edict is given) was stated at the front, and the phrase "綸言如此/天気如此" (the imperial edict is as stated above) was stated in the conclusion.). Rinji was originally a private document in comparison to official shochoku (imperial edict), but it contained many matters about politics and the military, and assumed the character of an official document. However, many important acts were still issued using Shosho or chokusho, and rinji was mainly issued for a decrees and extraordinary decrees given to a specified person. In the later age, usuzumi gami (gray paper) (shukushi (recycled paper) or sukigaeshi gami (paper made from dissolved paper), recycled paper made from used paper, which was inexpensive and easy to be stocked for urgent issuance of rinji, came to be used instead of white paper whose manufacturing cost was expensive because an advanced technique was required for manufacturing, and thereafter it became a custom to use usuzumi gami for rinji as a documentary format; therefore, in some cases, usuzumi gami was called 'rinji gami' (rinji paper), and rinji itself was called 'usuzumi rinji' (however, usuzumi gami was not used for rinji which was created and issued by the Emperor to government officials (esp. low to medium rank) (such as benkan, etc.) other than Kurodo no to (Head Chamberlain) and Kurodo).

The first rinji was given to Ningai from the Emperor Goichijo on April 12, 1028 (contained in "Kiu Nikki" (pray-for-rain diary) stored in Sanbo-in of Daigo-ji Temple). In particular, a significant number of rinji was issued during a period from the Kenmu era when Emperor Godaigo who abolished Insei (rule by the retired Emperor) specified rinji as a document replacing inzen (a decree from the retired Emperor) to the period of the Northern and Southern Courts (Japan), and many of them were important as historical data.
Meanwhile, forged rinji ran rampant as Nijo Kawara Rakusho (the Lampoon at Nijo Riverbed) contained information that 'what ran rampant in the city around this time was a night attack, robbery, premeditated rinji, etc.'

[Original Japanese]