See also: ryo, Ryō, and -ryō

English edit

Keichō-period koban with value of one ryō

Etymology edit

From Japanese (ryō).

Noun edit

ryō (plural ryō)

  1. A gold currency unit in the shakkanhō system in pre-Meiji Japan.
    • 2001, Monumenta Nipponica, volume 56, Sophia University, page 35:
      He pulled three gold ryō out of his pocket, made a hole in one of them with a short sword, and gave it to the child to play with.
    • 2011 [1962], A[rthur] L[indsay] Sadler, The Japanese Tea Ceremony: Cha-No-Yu, Tuttle Publishing, →ISBN:
      When he started off to go anywhere, which he frequently did quite casually, he always had two ryō in his pocket, which he explained, was for burial fee.
      The 1962 edition uses ryo.
    • 2014, Cecilia Segawa Seigle, Linda H. Chance, Ōoku: The Secret World of the Shogun’s Women, Amherst, N.Y.: Cambria Press, →ISBN:
      In the early seventeenth century, an ordinary town maid’s wage was 1.5 ryō a year; in the 1740s, it was 2 ryō a year. By the second decade of the nineteenth century, a maid generally received two to three ryō or, at most, three and a half ryō per year.

Further reading edit

Japanese edit

Romanization edit


  1. Rōmaji transcription of りょう