The Ghost of Namamugi: Charles Lenox Richardson and the Anglo-Satsuma War

In 1862, a British merchant was killed by samurai at Namamugi, a quiet village near Yokohama. One year later, a British fleet bombarded Kagoshima to extract reparations, reducing much of this south-western city to ash. This captivating re-telling locates the story firmly within the wider context of British imperial expansion in East Asia.

The Ghost of Namamugi is both a valuable document and a gripping read. It recounts the bloody murder of English merchant Charles Lenox Richardson in pre-Meiji Restoration Japan with the depth and breadth it deserves, placing it in the context of British imperial policy, treaty port life and Japan’s tumultuous exit from isolation. Fletcher explores the event’s significance with clarity, insight and discernment.” —Dr. Nadine Willems, Lecturer in Japanese History, University of East Anglia


Renaissance Books, February 2019


Robert S. G. Fletcher is the Kinder Institute Professor of British History and Director of Graduate Studies at the University of Missouri’s Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy