あ:book

07/17/2018

Regional geography books, Fudoki in the 8th century

In 713, regional geographies called Fudoki were created in each regions by order of the Genmei Emperor.
 
Fudoki contained information about regional products , origins of the names of mountains, rivers, fields and ancient legends.
 
Fudoki of five regions, Hitachi, Izumo, Harima, Bungo, Hizen still exist.
 
Izumo's Fudoki is almost complete.

07/04/2018

About Japan's history books created in the 8th century

In the 8th century, the system of centralized government was established under the Ritsuryo-code, which  contained criminal laws and the regulations about governmental organization.
 
And then, the national government created several books about Japan's history to show the process of Japan's development.
 
One of the books, Kojiki, was created by the order of the Tenmu Emperor in 712. The Tenmu Emperor made Hieda-no-Are, an expert of memory,  remember stories from the oral tradition of the Yamato Imperial Court. And then Hieda told the stories to a scholar O-no-Yasumaro and Yasumaro wrote down them by Chinese characters. Kojiki contains stories from the origin of Japan to the early 7th century.
 
A second book, Nihonshoki was completed in 720. This book was compiled by a prince of the Tenmu Emperor, Toneri-Shinno. It contains historical stories from the origin of Japan to the late 7th century, but the book focused more on the consolidation of political power and the rights of succession to the throne. The book was organized in chronological order, written in classical Chinese style because it imitated to the style of Chinese history books

08/19/2017

Descriptions about Japan in the Yayoi period

In those days, people in Japan didn't have writing, so there are no history books written in Japan about the situation in the Jomon period※1 and the Yayoi period※2 .

However, Japan's circumstances in the Yayoi period were described a little in Chinese history books. One of the history books is “Kanjyo-Chirishi”, which means the chapter on geography in the Book of Han. According to that book, the society of people in Japan was divided into about 100 provinces and their envoys regularly visited the Lelang Commandery.

According to another history book “Book of the Later Han”, an envoy from Na-province in Japan received a gold seal from Emperor Kobu in 57 BC. The seal was found at Shikanoshima-island in Fukuoka-city in the 18th century. Five Chinese characters, “漢(Han)倭(Japan)奴(Na-province)国王(King”were carved on the seal. It is not clear how these Chinese characters should be interpreted.

 

 ※1 the Jomon period ranged from around 12,000 B.C. to around 400 B.C.

※2 the Yayoi period ranged from around 400 B.C. to around 300 A.D.

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  • Hi there! I'm Lala. I'm a Japanese living in Tokyo. I'm an English speaking licensed guide and authorized tour conductor. If you have questions, please leave comments on this blog or send me e-mails. lalalamumin☆yahoo.co.jp (please replace ☆ with @ when you send me e-mails)

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