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Ancient Japan
Definitionby Mark Cartwright

Ancient Japan

Ancient Japan has made unique contributions to world culture which include the Shinto religion and its architecture, distinctive art objects such as haniwa figurines, the oldest pottery vessels in the world, the largest wooden buildings anywhere...
Medieval Japan
Definitionby Mark Cartwright

Medieval Japan

The medieval period of Japan is considered by most historians to stretch from 1185 to 1603 CE. Stand out features of the period include the replacement of the aristocracy by the samurai class as the most powerful social group, the establishment...
Emperor of Japan
Definitionby Mark Cartwright

Emperor of Japan

The emperor of Japan is a position as the head of state which traditionally dates back to the 7th century BCE and the legendary figure of Emperor Jimmu (r. 660-585 BCE). Emperors came to be known as the Tenno or 'heavenly sovereign' in reference...
Meiji Period
Definitionby Graham Squires

Meiji Period

The Meiji period refers to the period in Japanese history from 1868 to 1912 during which the Meiji Emperor reigned. Following the overthrow of the Tokugawa shogunate in the Meiji Restoration of 1868, Japan's new leaders embarked on a program...
Ancient History Encyclopedia in Japan
Articleby James Blake Wiener

Ancient History Encyclopedia in Japan

The “Ancient Japan” initiative at Ancient History Encyclopedia arose as there is a dearth of open access and digitally curated information concerning early Japanese history available online and in English. East and Southeast Asia...
The Mongol Invasions of Japan, 1274 & 1281 CE
Articleby Mark Cartwright

The Mongol Invasions of Japan, 1274 & 1281 CE

The Mongol invasions of Japan took place in 1274 and 1281 CE when Kublai Khan (r. 1260-1294 CE) sent two huge fleets from Korea and China. In both cases, the Japanese, and especially the samurai warriors, vigorously defended their shores...
Interview: Korea-Japan Relations Through the Prism of Archaeology
Interviewby James Blake Wiener

Interview: Korea-Japan Relations Through the Prism of Archaeology

Ancient East Asia was dominated by the three states known today as China, Japan, and Korea. The complex chain of successive kingdoms created a rich web of events that archaeologists have sometimes found difficult to disentangle; a situation...
Edo Period
Definitionby Graham Squires

Edo Period

The Edo period refers to the years from 1603 until 1868 when the Tokugawa family ruled Japan. The era is named after the city of Edo, modern-day Tokyo, where the Tokugawa shogunate had its government. It is also sometimes referred to as the...
The Horse-rider Theory in Ancient Japan
Articleby Mark Cartwright

The Horse-rider Theory in Ancient Japan

The 'horse-rider theory' is a controversial proposal that Japan was conquered around the 4th or 5th century CE by a culture from northern Asia to whom the horse was especially important. Although archaeological evidence and genetics point...
Insei: Cloistered Government in Ancient Japan
Articleby Mark Cartwright

Insei: Cloistered Government in Ancient Japan

Insei or 'cloistered government' describes the strategy of emperors during the late Heian Period (794-1185 CE) in ancient Japan where they abdicated in favour of a chosen heir yet still ruled in some capacity, typically after retiring to...
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