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Early Japanese Literature

By |2018-04-23T15:32:41+00:00July 27th, 2017|Japan, Literature|

A copy of the Kojiki from the 1300s AD Just after 700 AD, the Japanese Empress Genmei ordered her staff to write and publish Japan's first history book, the Kojiki, and the first geography and botany book, the Fudoki. The recent invention of wood-block printing meant that people were publishing and reading a lot of books in nearby China, and Genmei [...]

Nara period – Early medieval Japan

By |2018-04-18T09:53:55+00:00July 27th, 2017|History, Japan|

Model of the Empress Genmei's imperial audience hall at Heijo, Nara Empress Genmei moved the capital of Japan to the new planned city of Nara in 710 AD. She wanted the move to help get more power into her own hands and out of the hands of other powerful Japanese families. Genmei succeeded in stopping [...]

Heian period – Early Medieval Japan

By |2018-04-18T09:53:54+00:00July 27th, 2017|History, Japan|

Godai Kokuzo Bodhisattva (Jingo-ji Temple, Kyoto), ca. 800-900 AD After Empress Koken died in 770 AD, there was a major change in how Japan's government worked. The powerful families got more power, the same way they did in China about this time. Women were shut out of power. The next emperor, Konin, was an old man (62 years [...]