Sweden's king, Japan's emperor mark 150 years of diplomacy

Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf, left, Queen Silvia, second from right, greet Japan's Emperor Akihito, center left, and Empress Michiko upon their arrival at the special exhibition "The Art of Natural Science in Sweden" at the Intermediatheque Museum in Tokyo Monday, April 23, 2018. (Kazuhiro Nogi/Pool Photo via AP)
Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf, left, Queen Silvia, center right, greet Japan's Emperor Akihito, center left, and Empress Michiko upon their arrival at the special exhibition "The Art of Natural Science in Sweden" at the Intermediatheque Museum in Tokyo Monday, April 23, 2018. (Kazuhiro Nogi/Pool Photo via AP)
Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf, left, greets Japan's Emperor Akihito upon latter's arrival at the special exhibition "The Art of Natural Science in Sweden" at the Intermediatheque Museum in Tokyo Mondauy, April 23, 2018. (Kazuhiro Nogi/Pool Photo via AP)
Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf, right, Queen Silvia, second from right, Japanese Emperor Akihito, left, and Empress Michiko, second from left, visit Special Exhibition "The Art of Natural Science in Sweden" at JP Tower Museum in Tokyo, Monday, April 23, 2018.(AP Photo/Koji Sasahara, Pool)

TOKYO — Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf and Japan's Emperor Akihito attended a special exhibit on Swedish natural sciences in Tokyo on Monday to mark 150 years of diplomacy between the countries.

The king and Queen Silvia accompanied Akihito and Empress Michiko at the exhibition featuring three key Swedish scientists from the 18th century who have influenced Japan, including Carl Linnaeus, who set the basis of a systematic scientific classification.

Akihito, a marine biologist specializing in gobies, was awarded an honorary degree in 2007 for his research from the university where Linnaeus studied.

Japan's NHK television said Akihito was fixated by Linnaeus' original book of classification and stayed at the exhibition longer than planned. Television footage showed Akihito intensely looking at the book through a glass showcase, while a smiling Michiko stood by his side.

The Swedish royals were also to attend a state banquet hosted by Akihito and have lunch with the Japanese royals' oldest son, Crown Prince Naruhito. The king and queen will also meet with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and attend a business seminar and other events before leaving Tokyo on Thursday.

Akihito is set to abdicate at the end of April 2019 after reigning for 30 years. Naruhito is to succeed the Chrysanthemum Throne the next day.

You may also interested in

From teenager to warlord in 'Farewell My...

May 16, 2017

As a teenager, Zhao Hailong had a small role in the award-winning film "Farewell My Concubine," the...

Kevin Kwan: Americans will embrace 'Crazy Rich...

Aug 30, 2017

Kevin Kwan believes America will embrace the "Crazy Rich Asians" movie, which is based on his...

Hong Kong businessman and socialite David Tang...

Aug 30, 2017

David Tang, a flamboyant and outspoken socialite and entrepreneur who founded the Shanghai Tang...

In Hong Kong, political banners reveal gulf with...

Sep 30, 2017

Clashes about pro-independence banners in Hong Kong's universities have exposed the widening gulf...

China's conflicted goals: Freer markets, more...

Oct 19, 2017

China's ruling communists juggling conflicted goals: Freer markets, more party control

Sign up now!