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While serving only as a large center of commerce from its founding in the twelfth century until the end of the Tokugawa era, Edo was still second to Kyoto, which had always been the nation's capital and the residence of the Emperor. However, after the end of the bakumatsu and the start of the Meiji era, the Emperor moved to Edo in 1869, renaming it Tokyo (meaning "Eastern capital") and established it as the new official seat of government, both royal and municipal.
Home to many of the characters as well as the location of several major events, Tokyo is the primary setting of the Rurouni Kenshin series.