|History of Japan|
Kōkoku (興国) was a Japanese era of the Southern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Engen and before Shōhei, lasting from April 1340 to December 1346. The emperor in Kyoto was Emperor Kōmyō (光明天皇 Kōmyō-tennō). Go-Kōgon's Southern Court rival in Yoshino during this time-frame was Emperor Go-Murakami (後村上天皇 Go-Murakami-tennō).
During the Meiji period, an Imperial decree dated March 3, 1911 established that the legitimate reigning monarchs of this period were the direct descendants of Emperor Go-Daigo through Emperor Go-Murakami, whose Southern Court (南朝 nanchō) had been established in exile in Yoshino, near Nara.
Until the end of the Edo period, the militarily superior pretender-Emperors supported by the Ashikaga shogunate had been mistakenly incorporated in Imperial chronologies despite the undisputed fact that the Imperial Regalia were not in their possession.
| Era or nengō