This Institute was established by the late Father Johannes Laures on February 5, 1939, the anniversary of the martyrdom of 26 Japanese saints, for the purpose of research on the history of Christian missions in Japan, cultural exchange between Japan and Europe in conjunction with missionary work, and for wide range diffusion of such knowledge and results.


Kirishitan Bunko is a world-famous center for the collection, study, and publication of materials on early East-West relations and Christian missionary activities in Japan and Asia. The Kirishitan Bunko collection includes about 15,900 volumes, including books, documents, maps, materials published in Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries, Roman Catholic Church publications from the Meiji period, Petitjean editions, and other related materials. In recent years a Japanese government grant has provided funding for the release of an internet version of the third edition of“Kirishitan Bunko”bibliography and a virtual library of the Kirishitan Bunko Library rare book collection (Laures Kirishitan Bunko Rare Book Database and Virtual Library)

Sophia University

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