Famous People Born In Kyoto

Vote for Your Favourite People Born In Kyoto

Right IconThis ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

 1 
Shinsuke Nakamura
(Professional Wrestler Known for His Time in New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW))
Shinsuke Nakamura
15
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 24, 1980
Sun Sign: Pisces

Shinsuke Nakamura is a Japanese wrestler best known for appearing in World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) where he has won several championships, such as the Intercontinental Championship, United States Championship, and SmackDown Tag Team Championship. In 2016, Pro Wrestling Illustrated magazine named him the Most Popular Wrestler of the Year. He is also known for his association with New Japan Pro-Wrestling

 2 
Tasuku Honjo
(Nobel Prize-Winning Japanese Immunologist Who Is Known for His Research on Cancer Immunotherapy)
Tasuku Honjo
31
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: January 27, 1942
Sun Sign: Aquarius

Nobel Prize-winning Japanese immunologist Tasuku Honjo is known identifying the programmed cell death protein 1 and for revolutionizing cancer immunotherapy. Initially part of the University of Tokyo's faculty of medicine, he later taught genetics, immunology, and medical chemistry at several institutes. He was a foreign associate of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.

 3 
Haruki Murakami
18
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 12, 1949
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Japanese writer Haruki Murakami has authored bestselling works such as Norwegian Wood and Kafka on the Shore, which explore the genres of surrealism and magic realism. He has also translated works by J. D. Salinger and Raymond Carver. He has been named to Time 100 and has won numerous awards.
 4 
Emperor Meiji
(Emperor of Japan from 1867 to 1912)
Emperor Meiji
5
Birthdate: November 3, 1852
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Died: July 30, 1912

Emperor Meiji of Japan presided over the all-round revolutionary transformation of his empire which emerged as a strong force on the global scene during his reign. His policies and actions led to Japan’s rapid growth and ended its isolation from the rest of the world. One of the noted changes during rule was the abolition of special privileges of samurais.

 5 
Fusajiro Yamauchi
(Japanese Entrepreneur Best Remembered as the Founder of 'Nintendo')
Fusajiro Yamauchi
0
Listed In: Business People
Birthdate: November 22, 1859
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Died: January 1, 1940

Fusajiro Yamauchi was a Japanese entrepreneur best remembered for founding Nintendo. He also served as the first president of the company. Yamauchi started the company as a hanafuda card-making unit. Nintendo Koppai cards were the only exception in a time when the Japanese government had banned other playing cards due to their association with gambling.  

 6 
Mineko Iwasaki
(Autobiographer, Geisha)
Mineko Iwasaki
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: November 2, 1949
Sun Sign: Scorpio
 7 
Gumpei Yokoi
(Video Game Designer)
Gumpei Yokoi
2
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: September 10, 1941
Sun Sign: Virgo
Died: October 4, 1997
 8 
Empress Go-Sakuramachi
(117th Monarch of Japan)
Empress Go-Sakuramachi
0
Birthdate: September 23, 1740
Sun Sign: Libra
Died: December 24, 1813
 9 
Dogen
(Writer)
Dogen
3
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 19, 1200
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Died: September 22, 1253
 10 
Emperor Komei
(Emperor)
Emperor Komei
2
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: July 22, 1831
Sun Sign: Cancer
Died: January 30, 1867

The 121st tennō, or emperor, of Japan, Emperor Kōmei, had a tumultuous reign, which witnessed Japan being pushed to open to the Western world. He was the last Japanese emperor with multiple nengō, or era names. He was known for imposing an order of killing and persecuting foreign traders and officials.

 11 
Prince Naruhiko Higashikuni
(Military Personnel and Prime Minister of Japan from August 1945 to October 1945)
Prince Naruhiko Higashikuni
2
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: December 3, 1887
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Died: January 20, 1990
 12 
Kōji Wada
(Singer-songwriter, Singer)
Kōji Wada
0
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: January 29, 1974
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Died: April 3, 2016

Kōji Wada was a Japanese pop singer best remembered for performing several theme songs for the popular anime television series, Digimon. He had contributed songs to six Digimon anime series, including his most famous single Butter-Fly. Kōji Wada went on to perform internationally before succumbing to cancer in 2016 at the age of 42.

 13 
Kumi Koda
(Japanese singer)
Kumi Koda
1
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: November 13, 1982
Sun Sign: Scorpio

Kumi Koda is a Japanese singer renowned for her R&B and urban pop songs. One of the top-selling artists of her generation, Koda has won some of the most prestigious awards like MTV Video Music Awards Japan and Mnet Asian Music Awards. Over the years, Koda has also established herself as a fashion icon, setting trends like the ero-kakkoii style.

 14 
Joi Ito
(Japanese Activist, Entrepreneur and Venture capitalist)
Joi Ito
1
Birthdate: June 19, 1966
Sun Sign: Gemini

Joi Ito is a Japanese venture capitalist and entrepreneur best known for his association with Internet and technology companies. He is credited with founding several companies like Infoseek Japan, Digital Garage, and PSINet Japan. Over the years, Joi Ito has been honored with several prestigious awards like the Golden Plate Award and the IRI Medal. 

 15 
Juzo Itami
(Actor)
Juzo Itami
2
Birthdate: May 15, 1933
Sun Sign: Taurus
Died: December 20, 1997
 16 
Hiroyoshi Tenzan
(Japanese Professional Wrestler)
Hiroyoshi Tenzan
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: March 23, 1971
Sun Sign: Aries
Height: 6'0" (183 cm)
 17 
Sugawara Michizane
(Scholar and statesman)
Sugawara Michizane
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 1, 0845
Sun Sign: Leo
Died: March 26, 0903

A court scholar, Sugawara Michizane had held various significant posts, such as the governor of Sanuki and the minister of the right. He redefined Chinese literature, particularly Kanshi poetry, but was later exiled to an island for suspected treason. He is revered as the deity of learning and literature, Tenman-Tenjin.

 18 
Emperor Go-Mizunoo
(Emperor of Japan)
Emperor Go-Mizunoo
0
Birthdate: June 29, 1596
Sun Sign: Cancer
Died: September 11, 1680

Emperor Go-Mizunoo made history by being the first Japanese emperor to rule throughout the Edo period. Before he acquired the Chrysanthemum Throne, he was known as Kotohito or Masahito. He eventually abdicated the throne for his daughter, Okiko. The Imperial Mausoleum in Kyoto is dedicated to him.

 19 
Haruka Kuroda
(singer)
Haruka Kuroda
2
Birthdate: 1977 AD
 20 
Emperor Go-Daigo
(Emperor of Japan)
Emperor Go-Daigo
2
Birthdate: November 26, 1288
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Died: September 19, 1339

Emperor Go-Daigo reigned as the emperor of Japan from 1318 to 1339. He is best remembered for toppling the Kamakura shogunate and establishing the Kenmu Restoration to restore the Imperial House of Japan back into power. The subsequent fall of the Kenmu Restoration, which was overthrown by Ashikaga Takauji, gave rise to the two opposing factions within the imperial family. 

 21 
Kunishige Kamamoto
(Former Japanese Football Player, Manager and Politician)
Kunishige Kamamoto
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 15, 1944
Sun Sign: Aries
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 22 
Emperor Sakuramachi
(Emperor)
Emperor Sakuramachi
1
Birthdate: February 8, 1720
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Died: May 28, 1750

The first son of Japanese emperor Nakamikado, Emperor Sakuramachi reigned during the Edo period. He was known as Teruhito before he took over the Chrysanthemum Throne. People also believed him to be the reincarnation of Prince Shōtoku, and he brought back imperial rites such as Daijōsai and Shinjōsai.

 23 
Emperor Momozono
(Emperor)
Emperor Momozono
1
Birthdate: April 14, 1741
Sun Sign: Aries

The first son of Emperor Sakuramachi, Emperor Momozono was known as Toohito before he took over the Chrysanthemum Throne. He witnessed the Hōreki Scandal, in which a lot of young nobles were punished for supporting the restoration of direct Imperial rule. He died at the tender age of 22.

 24 
Ashikaga Yoshimitsu
(samurai)
Ashikaga Yoshimitsu
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: September 25, 1358
Sun Sign: Libra
Died: May 31, 1408

Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, a shogun of the Ashikaga shogunate, unlike his predecessors, was associated with the imperial bureaucracy. His reign witnessed major revolts, while he successfully crushed the pirates and feudal lords who threatened China, thus rekindling Sino-Japanese trade relations. The Chinese recognized him as the King of Japan.

 25 
Takashi Usami
(Football Winger Who Plays for Gamba Osaka in the J1 League)
Takashi Usami
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 6, 1992
Sun Sign: Taurus
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 26 
Emperor Sutoku
(Emperor)
Emperor Sutoku
0
Birthdate: July 7, 1119
Sun Sign: Cancer
Died: September 14, 1164
 27 
Emperor Nakamikado
(Emperor of Japan)
Emperor Nakamikado
1
Birthdate: January 14, 1702
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Died: May 10, 1737
 28 
Emperor Go-Sai
(Emperor , Sovereign)
Emperor Go-Sai
1
Birthdate: January 1, 1638
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Died: March 22, 1685
 29 
Saionji Kinmochi
(Former Prime Minister of Japan (1906 - 1909, 1911 - 1912))
Saionji Kinmochi
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: December 7, 1849
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Died: November 24, 1940

Born into nobility, Saionji Kinmochi came to prominence early in his life when he took part in the Meiji Restoration. He later entered politics and eventually rose to become the Prime Minister of Japan. During his reign, he tried to curtail military expenditure and keep the cabinet under party control. He wielded a moderating influence in Japanese politics even after retirement.

 30 
Emperor Antoku
(Emperor)
Emperor Antoku
2
Birthdate: December 22, 1178
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Died: April 25, 1185
 31 
Manabu Nakanishi
(Japanese Retired Professional Wrestler)
Manabu Nakanishi
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 22, 1967
Sun Sign: Cancer
Height: 6'1" (185 cm)
 32 
Fumiaki Tanaka
(Japanese Rugby Union Footballer)
Fumiaki Tanaka
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 3, 1985
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 33 
Osamu Shimomura
(Nobel Prize-Winning Japanese Organic Chemist and Marine Biologist Known for Discovering GFP)
Osamu Shimomura
1
Birthdate: August 27, 1928
Sun Sign: Virgo

Nobel Prize-winning Japanese organic chemist and marine biologist Osamu Shimomura is remembered for discovering the green fluorescent protein, or GFP. He was also associated with Princeton University and the Marine Biological Laboratory as a researcher and faculty member. He was named to the US National Academy of Sciences, too.

 34 
Emperor Shirakawa
(Emperor of Japan)
Emperor Shirakawa
2
Birthdate: July 7, 1053
Sun Sign: Cancer
Died: July 24, 1129
 35 
Ashikaga Yoshimasa
(8th ShōGun of the Ashikaga Shogunate (1449 - 1474))
Ashikaga Yoshimasa
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: January 20, 1436
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Died: January 27, 1490

Ashikaga Yoshimasa, a significant figure of the Ashikaga shogunate, ushered in a cultural renaissance in Japan. While he later wished to pass on his authority to his younger brother, his wife demanded their son be made the successor, and the succession dispute eventually led to the Ōnin War.

 36 
Toshinari Takaoka
(Japanese Long-Distance Runner)
Toshinari Takaoka
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 24, 1970
Sun Sign: Libra
Height: 6'1" (185 cm)
 37 
Masako Chiba
(Japanese Long-Distance Runner)
Masako Chiba
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: July 18, 1976
Sun Sign: Cancer
Height: 5'1" (155 cm)
 38 
Ryota Morioka
(Japanese Professional Footballer Who Plays as a Midfielder)
Ryota Morioka
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 12, 1991
Sun Sign: Aries
Height: 5'11" (180 cm)
 39 
Noriyuki Abe
(Storyboard Artist, Sound Director, Director)
Noriyuki Abe
1
Birthdate: July 19, 1961
Sun Sign: Cancer
 40 
Kimiko Date
(Japanese Former Professional Tennis Player)
Kimiko Date
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 28, 1970
Sun Sign: Libra
Height: 5'4" (163 cm)
 41 
Emperor Go-Shirakawa
(Emperor)
Emperor Go-Shirakawa
3
Birthdate: October 18, 1127
Sun Sign: Libra
Died: April 26, 1192
 42 
Fujiwara no Michinaga
(Statesman)
Fujiwara no Michinaga
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: 0966 AD
Died: January 3, 1028

Fujiwara no Michinaga was one of the most influential regents of the Fujiwara clan. Awarded the title Nairan, he virtually took over the governing authority from the emperor and had a good grip over the royalty. His reign also witnessed the creation of some of the richest literary works.

 43 
Sōtatsu
(Artist)
Sōtatsu
1
Birthdate: 1570 AD
Died: 1640 AD

Sōtatsu is best remembered for mingling the Japanese scroll painting tradition, Yamato-e, with the screen painting of the Azuchi-Momoyama period. His works were known for their elaborate use of color, especially gold and silver. He is credited with pioneering the Rinpa school of art, along with Hon'ami Kōetsu.

 44 
Aya Sugimoto
(Actress, TV personality)
Aya Sugimoto
1
Birthdate: July 19, 1968
Sun Sign: Cancer
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 45 
Tatsuo Yoshida
(Animator)
Tatsuo Yoshida
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: March 6, 1933
Sun Sign: Pisces
Died: September 5, 1977
 46 
Saigyō
(Poet)
Saigyō
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: 1118 AD
Died: March 23, 1190
 47 
Kanō Eitoku
(Japanese Painter)
Kanō Eitoku
0
Birthdate: February 16, 1543
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Died: October 12, 1590

Japanese painter of the Azuchi–Momoyama period Kanō Eitoku was the grandson of Kanō Motonobu, the patriarch and founder of the Kanō school of Japanese painting. His works consisted of the signature gold-leaf ground, with birds, trees, and flowers as motifs. Chinese Lions remains one of his best-known folding-screen painting.

 48 
Fujiwara no Teika
(Writer, Literary Critic and the Greatest Master of the Waka Poetic Form)
Fujiwara no Teika
1
Birthdate: 1162 AD
Died: September 26, 1241

Fujiwara no Teika was a Japanese anthologist, literary critic, calligrapher, novelist, scribe, and poet. Widely regarded as one of the greatest Japanese poets of all time, Fujiwara no Teika was very influential during the late-Heian and early-Kamakura periods. Considered the greatest exponent of the waka form, Fujiwara no Teika's ideas dominated classical Japanese poetry for centuries after his death.

 49 
Kanō Motonobu
(Japanese Painter Known for His Chinese Monochromatic Style and Characteristic Brushwork)
Kanō Motonobu
0
Birthdate: August 28, 1476
Sun Sign: Virgo
Died: November 5, 1559

Son of Masanobu, who founded the Kanō school of painting, Kanō Motonobu, too served the Ashikaga shoguns and specialized in suiboku. He also included features of the yamato-e style of Japanese painting in his works. He mostly drew inspiration from landscapes and nature, and also excelled in calligraphy.

 50 
Sanjō Sanetomi
(Acting Prime Minister of Japan (October 1889 – December 1889))
Sanjō Sanetomi
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: March 13, 1837
Sun Sign: Pisces
Died: February 18, 1891

Sanjō Sanetomi was a 19th-century Japanese Imperial court noble. He served as a statesman during the time of the Meiji Restoration and held many high-ranking offices in the Meiji government.  He became Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal of Japan after the dajōkan system was abolished and the cabinet system was established.