Welcome to the
Summer School in Early Modern Japanese Palaeography at the University of Cambridge.


Conceived as a contribution to the field of Japanese studies globally, our summer school trains the new generations in decoding, transcribing, and translating early modern manuscripts and woodblock-printed texts. With us you acquire and hone the complex set of skills required to work with early modern Japanese texts.

The first summer school was held in 2014 and in 2022 we will be hosting the ninth summer school. Over the course of these years we have trained more than 250 young researchers and we are ready to welcome many more.


This is absolutely the best course in the world to study pre-modern Japanese palaeography. (John, 2021)

If you want a highly charged, challenging, and fun experience for learning kuzushiji, look no further. This program is so thoughtfully planned and expertly run, while also just being thoroughly enjoyable – high energy, fun, efficient, not a moment wasted. It’s go-go-go, in the best way (Nancy, 2021).

Participating in the Summer School in Early Modern Japanese Palaeography is really helped me to expand my knowledge of how to read old Japanese texts. Anyone working with Edo period Japanese language sources would benefit from participating in the course! (James, 2021)

One of the best parts of the summer school is that it not only teaching you how to read early modern texts, but also introduces you to a community of scholars, researchers, and hobbyists from all over the world who you will encounter time and again. (Victoria, 2021)

The Summer School not only provides tactics for kuzushiji recognition but also offers information on kobun, sōrōbun, Japanese book history, cultural history, and many other fascinating topics. I met so many kind and knowledgeable people in my field and can’t wait for next year’s course! (Rose, 2021)

It was so much fun that you hardly noticed how much you learned in each session! The focused yet lighthearted atmosphere created the perfect study environment. It is an experience not to be missed! (Sabine, 2021)

We would like to thank the sponsors who have supported us during the past years. A particular thanks go to the sponsors below.