Understanding the structure of inequality and poverty in the economic development, this paper examines the experiences of Meiji Japan. Firstly, the Gini coefficient of land ownership calculated from official statistics compiled in the mid-1880s shows that land ownership was more unequal in the prefectures with higher income and higher tax burden on land property. It also turns out that distribution of land ownership in the early Meiji period was highly affected not only by land concentration proceeded in the Tokugawa period but by fiscal restraint policy called “Matsukata Deflation”. Secondly, it is evident that differences in regional poverty ratio defined as household ratio with income below the limit for low income exemption was highly related with income level and wealth inequality. Thirdly, worsening inequality of income and wealth was partly caused by much less progressive tax system in Meiji era.