On 1921 May 18, His Imperial Highness Crown Prince Hirohito of Japan visited Cambridge, as part of a 6-month tour of Europe.
After his arrival at the railway station, he went to Emmanuel College (of which the Master was then Vice-Chancellor), then on to the University Library (then at the Old Schools site), where he was shown a collection of Japanese books and maps. He then visited King’s and Queens’ Colleges.
On Wednesday May 18th, a glorious summer day, H.I.H. the Crown Prince of Japan visited Cambridge and our College. He was met at the Docket gate by the President, and conducted through the courts and the Lodge garden to the Lodge. He was accompanied by distinguished representatives of his own country, and of our Foreign Office. He passed though the gallery and the study and other chief rooms, and showed particular interest in the wig-room, the purpose of which was explained to him by one of his attendants. On passing out of the house, he expressed the sentiment, “Une très belle maison”. In the Cloister Court he was met by many members of the College with their cameras, and a similar welcome awaited him in the first court. As he left by the great gate he received a hearty send-off by the College.
[The Dial, No. 39, 1921 Easter, p. 6]
In this photograph, the Crown Prince is shown with President Thomas Cecil Fitzpatrick, leaving college through Old Court.
After leaving Queens’, he visited the Chemical Laboratories (then at Free School Lane), before returning to Emmanuel College to attend a lecture and have lunch. After lunch, he went in procession to the Senate House to receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws. He then visited Newnham College, after which he was driven to Ely Cathedral for tea with the Dean. He returned to Cambridge to view college rowing practice on the Cam, and attend a dinner party at Trinity College. He returned to London by train.