Machiyakunin (Municipal Official) (町役人)

"Machiyakunin," also pronounced as "choyakunin," refers to an administrative organization in urban areas which existed during the Edo period.

Names for this position and their organizations differed from region to region; in fact, they had chonanushi (town headman) as well as machiyakunin in Edo, and in Osaka, they had similar positions called sodoshiyori and machidoshiyori. In addition, a representative of a town was called chodai, kendan, or such in some regions. Also, each city had its own rule about the number of officials and their term of office, and as for the term of office, they were replaced every few years in some regions or cities while the position was hereditary in some other cities. The duty of a machiyakunin included informing town people of furegaki (bakufu [Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun] orders) from a magistrate's office and submitting people's appeals to the office. They were townsmen and they were not in the samurai class.

[Original Japanese]