Business: Great Imperialist

The word "tycoon" originated in Japan. Last week a bona fide tycoon, Takashi Masuda, died in Japan.

When Commodore Perry's "black ships" arrived in Japan in 1853, Takashi Masuda (pronounced ma'-su-da) was six years old, son of a mining official on the island of Sado. The family moved to Yedo before it was rechristened Tokyo, and at 13 Takashi Masuda went to work as office boy in the compound where the first U. S. Legation was located. Every day he walked ten miles to work, seized every opportunity to learn English and study the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!