Kenrei (県令)

Kenrei refers to:
a post equivalent to a prefectural governor in ancient China. Kenrei is the chief of Ken (a prefecture) assigned from 1871 to 1886.

Kenrei in ancient China.

According to the stipulation established in the Qin and Han Dynasties, the chief of Ken (a unit of local administration) with over one million houses was called Kenrei. The chief with less houses was called Hsien cheng (the head of Districts in the Han and Qin Dynasties). In general, the rank of Kenrei is considered higher than that of Hsien cheng. Gun (a unit of local administration, the head of which was taishu [governor-general]) comprised more than one Ken, and Gun was a subarea of Shu (an administrative division, the head of which was shishi [Provincial Governor] or maki). Go (a unit of local administration) was a subarea of Ken, and Sato (a unit of local administration) was a subarea of GO. While Kenrei managed all administration, they only dealt with civil administration. The head of Go was Sanro, and the head of Sato was Risei. Ken in China was equivalent to Gun (county) in Japan. Keni (commandants of the military affairs) were in charge of the military and the police administration of Ken.

Kenrei in Japan

In Haihan-chiken (abolition of feudal domains and establishment of prefectures) conducted in July 1871, the local system of Fu-han-ken sanchisei (fu-han-ken tripartite governance system) was unified into Ken and Fu (prefectures), and also in the ordinance of prefectural affairs issued in November of the same year, the name of the head of Ken was changed from Chikenji to Kenrei while that of three Fu, Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, remained as Chiji. The duty of Kenrei was to handle all administrative affairs within their jurisdiction. The Local Bureaucratic System effectuated in 1886 changed Kenri to Chiji.

[Original Japanese]