The Tokugawa Empire, which began in the seventeenth century, lasted for two hundred and fifty years in Japan and saved Japan from a country headed towards an anarchical state and turned into a success story by the great leader Tokugawa Ieyasu. As the Tokugawa Empire emerged, Japan was headed towards an era of reconstruction and unity. A major outcome from this era of reconstruction was the popularizing of the arts in Japan. However this outcome was a gradual one which emerged from the social and economic changes occurring at the time, which were the product of the rule of Tokugawa Ieyasu. What is to be explained is the flowering of the arts, as well as why the Japanese culture would have been so ready to accept this new form of culture. .
The Tokugawa Empire began with Tokugawa Ieyasu who took the place of emperor after his predecessors Odo Nobunga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi, both of whom help set the foundation of Japan, preparing it for Tokugawa to come in and take over. Odo Nobunga decreased the power of the Buddha, placed the shogunate under his power, and was seen more as a tyrant than a leader. Toyotomi convinced the Japanese to start their own form of currency, which was a major accomplishment of his time. However, he was a failure in his expansionist views. He tried to overtake Korea, but failed horribly when China came to its aid. Not only did Japan end up losing the war, but China ended up gaining a sphere of influence in Korea, which would be a cause of turmoil in later years.
Once Tokugawa came to power, he immediately went into action and confiscated much of the land of Japan, then redistributed a majority of it to himself and his men, which gave them the central control needed to maintain influence throughout all of Japan. In 1603 Ieyasu claimed the title shogun. This claim strengthened his position among the samurai class, and this meant he was easily allowed to make land grants under his own seal, and require written oaths from the daimyo (feudal lords), and to get them to help make his soon to be fortress in Edo.