Konin-shiki (Supplementary laws) (弘仁式)

The Konin-shiki was a compilation of laws that were compiled and enforced from the early Heian Period. It was a total of 40 volumes.

The compilation process

The idea of compiling the various laws had been explored since the time of Emperor Kanmu, but only began during the rein of Emperor Saga when a "Kyakushiki (law) compilation office" was established. The compilation project was formally launched with FUJIWARA no Fuyutsugu as a president, and responsibilities distributed between FUJIWARA no Kadonomaro, AKISHINO no Yasuhito, FUJIWARA no Mimori, TACHIBANA no Tsunenushi, and OKIHARA no Miniku.

On June 9, 820, both the Konin-kyaku Code and the Konin-shiki Code were submitted. After revisions and corrections were made to it, it was resubmitted 10 years later on October 30, 830, and put into effect on December 9 of the same year. As flaws were found in the finalized edition, it was amended and the revised version was distributed on May 28, 840 under the new title, "Kaisei Irohibyu Kyakushiki" (Revised and improved edition of the law). The existing copies of the Konin-Kyaku and Konin-Shiki are believed to be from after the final revision.

The contents

Regulations and codes were created by either the Grand or government officials and included such laws as the "Hachijyu-hachi-rei" (the 88 Regulations), the "Shikibu-sho-rei" (regulations for the Ministry of Ceremonies), and "Minbu-sho-shiki" (codes for the Ministry of Popular Affairs). The codes and their precedents were gathered and chosen from, then filed by the appropriate official. If a suitable official could not be found, the document would be included in the miscellaneous section at the end of the volume. Even after the "Jogan-shiki code" was established, the "Konin-shiki Code" was still referred to for matters that were not specified in the "Jogan-shiki", and it was the source of much confusion. A unified "Engi-shiki" was created, and the "Konin-shiki" and "Jogan-shiki" were discarded.

The original "Konin-shiki" volumes were since lost, but some of it's texts were on the back of the pages in the Kujo family's copy of the "Engi-shiki" (which was declared a national treasure and is currently stored at the Tokyo National Museum). Only fragments from the second part of the "Shikibu-sho" (the Ministry of Ceremonial) in Volume 19, and the first part of the "Shuzeiryo" (Bureau of Taxation) in volume 25 remain, along with quotations mentioned in various books. There is a 30 volume set that claims to be a copy of the original, but which is actually a fake.

[Original Japanese]