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History of Nagasaki



Nagasaki was founded aproximately in 1500 and was not very famous until the europeans came to its port with their big ships and this occured in 1542, Omura Sumitada - who was a follower of the Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier - was one of the men who obtain a good deal from the trade of portugueses ships in Nagasaki port.

Since then the port was very frequented by portuguese ships, the main product of trade was the tobacco but also textiles and bread, and despite of its religion in 1580 Nagasaki converted into a Jesuit Colony and a refuge for the christians, because they were persecuted in other cities of Japan, but in 1587 Nagasaki became one of them, with the arrival of Toyotomi Hideyoshi the christianity was punished and everyone who practiced christianity was killed, he began killing 26 people on February 05 of 1596 and crucified them on Nishizaka Hill, other hundreds of people more died after this fact.

Finally in 1614 the Catholicism was forbidden and all the misionaries left japanese territory, those who didn't want to leave were persecuted, tortured and many times were killed just for their religion, definitively this was not a good period in the Christianity history.

In 1637 occured the Shimabara rebellion, which tried to convince politicians to avoid foreign influences because they were not good enough for the city's development, thus the portuguese and dutch were taken prisoners and carried to Deshima and Hirado prisons respectively. In 1720 japanese people were showing interest in dutch learning known as 'rangaku', they could see medicine books and instruments from dutch people, after that many people demonstrate the same interest and japanese medicine was getting better since then.

Nagasaki converted into an important international trade port in 1859 and the modern era began in the city in 1868, when the city was getting more and more beautiful, the main economic activity was the ship-building, so many of the japanese ships used to fight in World War II were made in Nagasaki.

Maybe this was the fact that supported to the United States to attack this city, anyway, on August 09 of 1945, Nagasaki was the second city to be attacked by the atom bomb at 11:02 am killing 73,000 people inmediatly and 75,000 were injured.

The Nagasaki Peace Park is now the main place to commemorate those deaths, japanese and non japanese people have lost their lives that day and with this fact Nagasaki became the second and last city which suffered a bomb attack.

Nowadays, the city looks completely reconstructed and very modern, has new buildings and churches, as well as interesting Museums and gardens, Nagasaki knew how to overcome its problems and now is one of the principal cities in Japan.






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