|Japan and sumptuary laws:|
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"Japan under the shoguns
According to Britannica Online, "In feudal Japan sumptuary laws were passed with a frequency and minuteness of scope that had no parallel in the history of the Western world." During the Tokugawa period (1603–1868) in Japan, people of every class were subject to strict sumptuary laws that included regulation of the types of clothing that could be worn. In the second half of that period (the 18th and 19th centuries), the merchant class (chōnin) had grown far wealthier than the aristocratic samurai, and these laws sought to maintain the superiority of the samurai class despite the ability of the merchants to wear far more luxurious clothing and to own far more luxurious items. The shogunate eventually gave in and allowed certain concessions, including allowing merchants of a certain prestige to wear a single sword at their belt; samurai were required to wear a matched pair when on official duty."