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Tuesday, 3rd March 2009
In General Japan News,

Japan's Crown Princess makes rare solo appearance

Crown Princess Masako of Japan has a rare solo appearance outside of the Imperial palace walls.

The 45-year-old royal, who has suffered from a stress-induced illness while attempting to adjust to life in the public eye, paid a visit to an exhibition at a department store in Tokyo.

She listened intently as as attendant explained the items exhibited, which included a butter-maker and a device to help disabled people write.

It was the first time Masako has appeared in public without her husband Crown Prince Naruhito since 2006.

The couple have one child, seven-year old Princess Aiko, reports the AFP.

Japan's royal family is known as the Imperial Family, the Yamato Dynasty and the Chrysanthemum Throne.

The Japanese hereditary monarchy is regarded as the oldest of its kind still in existence today.

Crown Prince Naruhito is the heir apparent to the Japanese throne.

Related news stories:
Japanese princess finishes kindergarten (17th March 2008)
Crown Prince urges Emperor Akihito to 'reduce burden' (24th February 2012)