Mito (水戸) is the capital city of Ibaraki Prefecture. Today the city is best known for fermented soybeans (natto) and for being home to Kairakuen Garden, one of the three best landscape gardens in Japan.

Mito rose to prominence during the Edo Period (1603 - 1868), when Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa shogunate, chose the city as the base for one of his three most important family branches, along with Wakayama and Nagoya. Because of this, Mito was a major power base with considerable impact on the politics and intellectual history of the era.

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