Jiang Baili was a famous Chinese military trainer who attended the Imperial Japanese Army Academy. Some sources, including the Wikipedia article, claims that he graduated top of the class and that this requires the Japanese Emperor to award him with a sword. The Wikipedia article references the book Studying the Enemy: Japan Hands in Republican China and Their Quest for National Identity, 1925-1945 (East Asia: History, Politics, Sociology and Culture) by Christiane I. Reinhold. The exact passage is available in Google Books, but is a bit thin on details:
Upon graduation, Jiang stayed in Japan and was admitted to the Seijo Gakko, the Japanese army preparatory school; and in 1904, sponsored by Liang Qichao, Jiang enrolled in the Shikan Gakko, the Japanese military academy. During his student days, Jiang Baili joined Chinese revolutionary circles in Japan, organized with his fellow students from Zhejiang province, and became a member of the Tongmenghui.
In 1905, Jiang Baili graduated first of his class, much to the chagrin of the Japanese that a Chinese would beat out the Japanese competition. Even more infuriating was that the graduation ceremonies demanded that the Japanese Emperor would honor the best student by personally handing him a sword.
Other books also mention this, including other claims like administrators reorganising the class structure so that they won't have to award the sword to a foreigner.
But I've also read that there's no such rule for awarding swords, and that this rule actually existed at the Army War College, which was much more prestigious, requiring students to be previous graduates at the Imperial Japanese Army Academy, plus also two to six years' field experience as lieutenant in the Japanese military, and that the top six graduates from each year would receive a sword from the Emperor. It would be highly improbable for any foreigner to have such experience.
So did Jiang Baili actually receive a sword, or was supposed to receive a sword? Did the Imperial Japanese Army Academy have such a rule for giving out swords?