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Kansai - Kofun Period
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EQ 2020  jp_kofun / JpKofun

The Kofun period is commonly defined by the emergence and spread of mounded tombs, from which derive the word Kofun meaning "old tumulus"(Ko (=ancient) + fun(=tumulus)). [1] [2] The most visually prominent type of these mounds is the monumental keyhole shaped tomb that spread from northern Kyushu to Kanto from the middle of the third century onwards. [3] [4] The large-sized keyhole shaped tombs have been interpreted as the burials of regional leaders. [2] Most of the largest keyhole shaped tumuli are distributed in the present-day Nara basin and Osaka plain of the Kansai region, which could have played a prominent political role in Japan during the Kofun period. [1] The Kofun period is sub-divided into three sub-periods: Early (250-400 CE), Middle (400-475 CE), and Late (475-710 CE). [5] This sub-division is based on changes in tomb structures and their assemblages, in settlement patterns and in ruling dynasties. In fact, the seat of the political centre shifted from Miwa, during the Early Kofun, to Kawachi, in the Middle Kofun, and finally to Asuka in the Late Kofun period. [6]
Population and political organization
The Early Kofun period is characterized by the spatial distribution of many contemporaneous large keyhole shaped tumuli, which represent the presence of several different polities and regional leaders. [1] [7] In this period, bronze mirrors, beads of jasper and green tuff, haniwa vessels, iron weapons and tools were deposited in the large mounded tombs, which likely hosted the burial of a regional chief. [8] The burial chambers were either cists made of slate stone in oblong plan or vertical pitsdug on the top of the mound. [9] The political centre was Miwa, in the south-eastern Nara basin. Thi centres incorporated the Makimuku district, which housed the large Hashikaka keyhole-shaped tomb (280 m long), considered to be the burial place of the queen Himiko. [5] The power was held at Miwa by the Sujin dynasty. [10] [11]
The Middle Kofun period is characterized by the spread of large keyhole-shaped mounds in the Osaka Plains.The grave assemblage met substantial change: bronze mirrors and fine beadstone objects were no longer deposited. [6] [12] Instead, the amount of iron deposited in the tombs in form of weapons and/or tools increased. [6] Beads, armlets and talismans begant to be made of talc, and they were not only deposited in burials but also used in landscape rituals. [13] [14] [15] Horse trappings, gilt-bronze ornaments and gold jewellery began being deposited in the grave assemblage of large burial mounds. [6] In this period, the power was exerted by the Ojin dynasty in the centre of Kawachi, in the east central Osaka prefecture. [6]
In the Late Kofun Period the size of the burial mounds decreased significantly and the construction of large keyhole-shaped tumuli ceased, except for the Kanto region. Thereafter, the tumuli of the regional leaders were downsized and built in a rectangular and square shape. [16] [17] [18] This decline was followed by the proliferation of clusters of small round tumuli called "packed tumuli clusters". [19] They have been interpreted as the result of the emulation of the chiefly habits by powerful extended family-scale groupings. [20] In this period were also introduced the corridor-chamber tombs and the cliff-cut cave tombs. [21] The power was held by the Keitai dinasty in the centre of Asuka, in southern Nara prefecture. [22] The introduction of Buddhism in 552 CE, determined a new Buddhism-based culture in the area. [21]
We have estimated the population of Kansai to be between 150,000 and 200,000 people in 300 CE, and between 1.5 million and 2 million by 500 CE. An estimated 16.8% of the Japanese population lived in Kansai from 250-599 CE. [23] [24]

Reference(s):

[1]: Mizoguchi, K., 2009.Nodes and edges: A network approach to hierarchisation and state formation in Japan. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 28, 15.

[2]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 7.

[3]: Hirose, K. 1992. ‘Zenphkhenfun no Kinai hennen [Chronology of keyhole tombs in the Kinai]’. In Y. Kondh (ed.). Kinki-hen, pp. 24-6.

[4]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 221-226.

[5]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 9.

[6]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 10.

[7]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 243.

[8]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 259-264.

[9]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 249-250.

[10]: Kawamura, Y. 2004. ‘Shoki Wa seiken to tamazukuri shidan [Early Wa authority and bead production]’. Khkogaku Kenkyi 50 (4): 55-75.

[11]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 9-10.

[12]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 260-263.

[13]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 262.

[14]: Barnes, G., 2006. ‘Ritualized beadstone in Kofun-period society’. East Asia Journal: studies in material culture 2(1).

[15]: Kaner, Simon. "The Archaeology of Religion and Ritual in the Prehistoric Japanese Archipelago." The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of Ritual and Religion (2011): 457-469.

[16]: Shiraishi, T., 1999. ‘Kofun kara mita yamato Hken to Azuma [Viewing Yamato kingly authority and the eastern provinces from mounded tombs]’. Khkai khkogaku khza, pp. 15-17 (conference pamphlet). Maebashi: Gunma-ken Maizhbunkazai Chhsajigyhdan.

[17]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 10-11.

[18]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 297-298.

[19]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 298.

[20]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 298-299.

[21]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 14.

[22]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 10, 14.

[23]: Kidder, J. E., 2007. Himiko and Japan’s elusive chiefdom of Yamatai: archaeology, history, and mythology. University of Hawaii Press, 60.

[24]: Koyama, S., 1978. Jomon Subsistence and Population. Senri Ethnological Studies 2. Osaka: National Museum of Ethnology

General Variables
Identity and Location
  Utm Zone:
53 S  
  Original Name:
Kansai - Kofun Period  
  Capital:
Miwa  
Kawachi  
Asuka  
  Alternative Name:
Kofun period in Kinki region  
Kofun period in Kinai region  
Temporal Bounds
  Duration:
[250 CE ➜ 537 CE]  
Political and Cultural Relations
  Suprapolity Relations:
uncoded  
  Supracultural Entity:
Initial Kofun Package  
  Succeeding Entity:
Kansai - Asuka Period  
  Scale of Supracultural Interaction:
90,000 km2  
  Relationship to Preceding Entity:
continuity  
  Preceding Entity:
Kansai - Yayoi Period  
  Degree of Centralization:
quasi-polity  
Language
  Linguistic Family:
Japonic  
  Language:
Japanese  
Religion
Social Complexity Variables
Social Scale
Polity Territory:
[100,000 to 150,000] km2  
Polity Population:
[150,000 to 200,000] people 250 CE 400 CE
[200,000 to 300,000] people 401 CE 500 CE
[250,000 to 350,000] people 500 CE 537 CE
Hierarchical Complexity
Settlement Hierarchy:
3  
Religious Level:
1 250 CE 537 CE
Military Level:
3 300 CE
[3 to 4] 400 CE 500 CE
Administrative Level:
3 250 CE 299 CE
[3 to 5] 300 CE 530 CE
Professions
Professional Soldier:
present  
Professional Priesthood:
inferred present 250 CE 500 CE
present 501 CE 531 CE
Professional Military Officer:
inferred present  
Bureaucracy Characteristics
Specialized Government Building:
unknown  
Full Time Bureaucrat:
unknown  
Examination System:
unknown  
Law
Professional Lawyer:
absent  
Formal Legal Code:
unknown  
Specialized Buildings: polity owned
Irrigation System:
present  
Food Storage Site:
present  
Transport Infrastructure
Road:
present 250 CE 499 CE
absent 250 CE 499 CE
inferred present 500 CE
Port:
present 250 CE 499 CE
absent 250 CE 499 CE
inferred present 500 CE 537 CE
Canal:
unknown  
Special-purpose Sites
Mines or Quarry:
inferred present  
Information / Writing System
Written Record:
inferred absent 250 CE 399 CE
absent 399 CE 449 CE
present 399 CE 537 CE
Script:
present  
Phonetic Alphabetic Writing:
inferred absent  
Nonwritten Record:
unknown  
Non Phonetic Writing:
present  
Mnemonic Device:
unknown  
Information / Kinds of Written Documents
Scientific Literature:
unknown  
Sacred Text:
absent 250 CE 399 CE
inferred absent 399 CE 537 CE
Religious Literature:
absent 250 CE 399 CE
inferred absent 399 CE 537 CE
Practical Literature:
inferred absent 250 CE 399 CE
present 399 CE 449 CE
absent 399 CE 449 CE
present 450 CE 537 CE
Philosophy:
inferred absent 250 CE 399 CE
present 399 CE 537 CE
Lists Tables and Classification:
inferred absent 250 CE 399 CE
absent 399 CE 449 CE
present 399 CE 449 CE
present 450 CE 537 CE
History:
inferred absent 250 CE 399 CE
inferred present 399 CE 537 CE
Fiction:
present  
Calendar:
inferred absent 250 CE 399 CE
absent 399 CE 449 CE
present 399 CE 449 CE
present 450 CE 537 CE
Information / Money
Token:
unknown  
Paper Currency:
absent  
Indigenous Coin:
absent  
Foreign Coin:
present  
Article:
present  
Information / Postal System
Information / Measurement System
Warfare Variables (Military Technologies)
Fortifications
  Wooden Palisade:
present  
  Stone Walls Non Mortared:
inferred present  
  Stone Walls Mortared:
unknown  
  Settlements in a Defensive Position:
present  
  Modern Fortification:
absent  
  Moat:
present  
  Fortified Camp:
unknown  
  Earth Rampart:
present  
  Ditch:
present  
  Complex Fortification:
absent  
  Long Wall:
absent  
Military use of Metals
  Steel:
absent  
  Iron:
present  
  Copper:
inferred present  
  Bronze:
present  
Projectiles
  Tension Siege Engine:
absent  
  Sling Siege Engine:
unknown  
  Sling:
present  
  Self Bow:
present  
  Javelin:
inferred present  
  Handheld Firearm:
absent  
  Gunpowder Siege Artillery:
absent  
  Crossbow:
unknown  
  Composite Bow:
absent  
  Atlatl:
inferred absent  
Handheld weapons
  War Club:
inferred present  
  Sword:
present  
  Spear:
present  
  Polearm:
present  
  Dagger:
present  
  Battle Axe:
inferred present  
Animals used in warfare
  Horse:
present  
  Elephant:
absent  
  Donkey:
unknown  
  Dog:
unknown  
  Camel:
absent  
Armor
  Wood Bark Etc:
unknown  
  Shield:
present  
  Scaled Armor:
unknown 250 CE 500 CE
inferred present 501 CE 538 CE
  Plate Armor:
absent  
  Limb Protection:
unknown  
  Leather Cloth:
present  
  Laminar Armor:
absent 250 CE 299 CE
unknown 300 CE 349 CE
present 350 CE 538 CE
  Helmet:
absent 250 CE 400 CE
present 401 CE 538 CE
  Chainmail:
inferred absent  
  Breastplate:
absent 250 CE 300 CE
present 301 CE 538 CE
Naval technology
  Specialized Military Vessel:
unknown  
  Small Vessels Canoes Etc:
unknown  
  Merchant Ships Pressed Into Service:
unknown  
Religion Tolerance Nothing coded yet.
Human Sacrifice Nothing coded yet.
Crisis Consequences Nothing coded yet.
Power Transitions Nothing coded yet.

NGA Settlements:

Year Range Kansai - Kofun Period (jp_kofun) was in:
 (250 CE 537 CE)   Kansai
Home NGA: Kansai

General Variables
Identity and Location
Miwa Kawachi Asuka

DESCRIPTION 1 Miwa: 250 CE - 400 CE; Kawachi: 400 CE - 475 CE; Asuka: 475 CE - 710 CE The three main Kofun sub-periods were charaxterized by shifts in settlement patterns and dynastic succession [1] .

Reference(s):

[1]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 9.


Kofun period in Kinki region Kofun period in Kinai region

Temporal Bounds
[250 CE ➜ 537 CE]

DESCRIPTION 1 The Kofun period is generally divided into three sub-periods: Early (ca. 250 - 400 CE), Middle (ca. 400 - 475 CE), and Late (ca. 475-710 CE). [1] [2] The last part of the Kofun period is often designated by the historias as Asuka period (ca. 538 - 710 CE), which begins with the introduction of writing and of Buddhism into the country. [3] [4]
The Kofun period is subdivided into three sub-periods: Early (250-400 CE), Middle (400-475 CE), and Late (475-710 CE). [1] This subdivision is based in change of tomb structures their assemblage, of settlement patterns and of ruling dynasties. In fact, the political centre shifts from Miwa, during the Early Kofun, to Kawachi (Middle Kofun), and finally to Asuka in the Late Kofun. [5]

Reference(s):

[1]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 9.

[2]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 34.

[3]: Brooks, T, 2013. "Early Japanese Urbanism: A Study of the Urbanism of Proto-historic Japan and Continuities from the Yayoi to the Asuka Periods."Unpublished thesis, Sydney University, 8.

[4]: Department of Asian Art. "Asuka and Nara Periods (538-794)". In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000-. http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/asna/hd_asna.htm (October 2002).

[5]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 10-11.


Political and Cultural Relations
Initial Kofun Package

DESCRIPTION 1 Mizoguchi (2013) characterizes one broad regional cultural horizon: the Initial Kofun package, which spread from northern Kyushu to Kanto (see Figure 1 below) [1] .This homogeneous cultural horizon is characterised by the prevalence of keyhole-shaped tumulus containing a set of grave goods such as bronze mirrors, bronze and iron tools and weapons [2] .

Reference(s):

[1]: Mizohuchi, K., 2009. Nodes and edges: A network approach to hierarchisation and state formation in Japan. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 28, pp. 15, 18-19.

[2]: Mizoguchi, k., 2009.Nodes and edges: A network approach to hierarchisation and state formation in Japan. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 28, pp. 15.


Kansai - Asuka Period

Scale of Supracultural Interaction:
90,000 km2

DESCRIPTION 1 km squared


Kansai - Yayoi Period

quasi-polity

DESCRIPTION 1 "the Yayaoi period was the first fully agrarian phase in Japanese history. The Kofun period is commonly regarded as the state formation phase." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 26) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


Religion
Social Complexity Variables
Social Scale
[100,000 to 150,000] km2

DESCRIPTION KM2. [1]
Centers in Kyushu (south west Japan) and Nara-Osaka-Kobe area until 600 CE when unified by a bureaucracy and Buddhism. So 250-599 CE = Nara-Osaka-Kobe, whilst 600-710 CE = Nara-Osaka-Kobe + Kyushu (south west Japan).
"The other main centre was in the fertile, but circumscribed, alluvial systems of the Nara-Osaka-Kobe area, where status differentiation appears instead to have been based on hereditary ritual authority. The fusion of these geographical power-bases had occurred by about A.D. 600, by which time a well-developed bureaucracy in the Nara basin was exerting its authority and promoting Buddhism as a unifying ideology for the new regime, thus replacing the ritual authority vested in earlier individual rulers." [2]

"From about A.D. 300 until the capital was moved to Kyoto in the late 8th century, the Nara basin definitely was the centre of sociopolitical development in Japan." [3]
"it is difficult to see any evidence for a political unification of a large part of Japan as early as A.D. 369, or shortly thereafter. Yamao (1977) argues, on documentary grounds, that unification was not achieved until about A.D. 531." [4]
"the administrative devices of the central state in the Nara were imported from the continent in order to consolidate the power of that state vis a vis the competing polities in the surrounding areas within Japan." [4]
There is not a unique polity in this period. The political landscape appears fragmented into a variety of competing chiefdoms. The most important political centres in this period are Miwa, Kawachi and Asuka respectively in the Early, Middle and Late Kofun period [5] .

Reference(s):

[1]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985: 396) Seshat URL: https://www.zotero.org/groups/1051264/seshat_databank/items/itemKey/A2BBAAY5.

[2]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.

[3]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 394) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.

[4]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.

[5]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 10.


[150,000 to 200,000] people 250 CE 400 CE [200,000 to 300,000] people 401 CE 500 CE [250,000 to 350,000] people 500 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION Whole of Japan = 1m in 300 CE, 1.5m in 400 CE, 1.75m in 500 CE, 3m in 600 CE, 3.5m in 700 CE. [1]
Figure for 250-599 CE = 16.8% of Japan estimate (assumes equal density per km2)
An estimation of the population size in Japan between 300 BCE-700 CE was provided by Koyama [2] on the basis of his demographic study on the forty-seven-volume "National Site Maps" published by the Japanese government in 1965. During the Yayoi and Kofun periods around 16.8 % of Japan’s population lived in the Kansai region [3] .
Figure for 600-710 CE = estimate for southern half of Japan (assumes slightly higher density per km2 in southern half, using half of Japan figure as baseline of range)
Centers in Kyushu (south west Japan) and Nara-Osaka-Kobe area until 600 CE when unified by a bureaucracy and Buddhism. So 250-599 CE = Nara-Osaka-Kobe, whilst 600-710 CE = Nara-Osaka-Kobe + Kyushu (south west Japan)."The other main centre was in the fertile, but circumscribed, alluvial systems of the Nara-Osaka-Kobe area, where status differentiation appears instead to have been based on hereditary ritual authority. The fusion of these geographical power-bases had occurred by about A.D. 600, by which time a well-developed bureaucracy in the Nara basin was exerting its authority and promoting Buddhism as a unifying ideology for the new regime, thus replacing the ritual authority vested in earlier individual rulers." [4]

Reference(s):

[1]: (McEvedy and Jones 1978) McEvedy, Colin. Jones, Richard. 1978. Atlas of World Population History. Penguin Books Ltd. London.

[2]: Koyama, S., 1978. Jomon Subsistence and Population. Senri Ethnological Studies 2. Osaka: National Museum of Ethnology

[3]: Kidder, J. E., 2007. Himiko and Japan’s elusive chiefdom of Yamatai: archaeology, history, and mythology. University of Hawaii Press, 60.

[4]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


Hierarchical Complexity
3

DESCRIPTION 3. large settlements
2. small villages1. hamlets


1 250 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1. shamanistic local figures, having religious and social authority [1] .
"Between A.D. 300 and A.D. 500 people in the area of the present day Kobe-Osaka-Kyoto triangle began to bury their elite dead in huge stone sarcophagi covered by keyhole-shaped earthen mounds called kofun." [2]
Mound building until change of emphasis to constructing Buddhist temples "from the sixth century onwards." [3]
_Buddhism_

Reference(s):

[1]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 299.

[2]: (Jones 2015, 87-88) Jones, David. 2015. Martial Arts Training in Japan: A Guide for Westerners. Tuttle Publishing.

[3]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


3 300 CE [3 to 4] 400 CE 500 CE

DESCRIPTION The earliest evidence for a “bureaucratic machinery” appears to date to the late fifth century CE [1]
"The Kofun period is commonly regarded as the state formation phase." [2]
Later-era documents "describe the Kofun-period elites as horse-riding, armored, sword- and bow-wielding warriors who organized themselves into military clans. They quickly dominated the Yayoi cultures and laid the foundation of the latter-day rise of the samurai." [3]
Early in period?
3. warrior leader
2. ?1. soldier
Later in period?
4. Warrior leader
3. Commander2. Officer -- more than one level?1. soldier
The discovery of bronze weapons in the tombs of people, which likely belonging to the local elite, suggests the presence of war leaders. The Kofun period was characterized by heated competition and conlict among different chiefdoms [4] [5] .

Reference(s):

[1]: (Steenstrup 2011, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 26) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.

[3]: (Jones 2015, 87-88) Jones, David. 2015. Martial Arts Training in Japan: A Guide for Westerners. Tuttle Publishing.

[4]: G. Barnes, 2007. State formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-century ruling elite. Routledge, 136.

[5]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 286,297.


3 250 CE 299 CE [3 to 5] 300 CE 530 CE

DESCRIPTION
"The Kofun period is commonly regarded as the state formation phase." [1]
"it is difficult to see any evidence for a political unification of a large part of Japan as early as A.D. 369, or shortly thereafter. Yamao (1977) argues, on documentary grounds, that unification was not achieved until about A.D. 531." [2]
"the administrative devices of the central state in the Nara were imported from the continent" [2]
5. Emperors [3]
Period noted for having "ruling dynasties" and built large tumuli mounds. Possibly more levels than 2, especially in mound building activity.
"it is only after about A.D. 600 that palaces have been found where increasingly greater space was allotted for the administrative work of bureaucrats (Yokoyama 1978)." [4]
_Central government_
4.The earliest evidence for a “bureaucratic machinery” appears to date to the late fifth century CE [5]
by 600 CE "a well-developed bureaucracy in the Nara basin was exerting its authority and promoting Buddhism as a unifying ideology for the new regime, thus replacing the ritual authority vested in earlier individual rulers." [4]
3. Different departments inferredfirst imperial chronicles by 712 CE and historical records before this time [6]
"the administrative devices of the central state in the Nara were imported from the continent in order to consolidate the power of that state vis a vis the competing polities in the surrounding areas within Japan." [2]
2.1.
_Provincial government_
4.3.2.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 26) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.

[2]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.

[3]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32-33) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.

[4]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.

[5]: (Steenstrup 2011, 11)

[6]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


Professions
present

DESCRIPTION “Written sources refer to powerful clan groups and their leaders, to many kinds of lesser titled officials, to guilds and corporations of artists, fishers, farmers and soldiers attached to the clans.” [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Aikens, C. Melvin and Takayasu Higuhi. 1982. Prehistory of Japan. New York: Academic Press, 253.)


present 250 CE 500 CE present 501 CE 531 CE

DESCRIPTION It seems that there are shamanistic figures - earlier period. Definitely Buddhists and Buddhist temples in later period linked to government. Mound building until change of emphasis to constructing Buddhist temples "from the sixth century onwards." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


present

DESCRIPTION “Written sources refer to powerful clan groups and their leaders, to many kinds of lesser titled officials, to guilds and corporations of artists, fishers, farmers and soldiers attached to the clans.” [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Aikens, C. Melvin and Takayasu Higuhi. 1982. Prehistory of Japan. New York: Academic Press, 253.)


Bureaucracy Characteristics
Specialized Government Building:
unknown

DESCRIPTION The earliest evidence for a “bureaucratic machinery” appears to date to the late fifth century CE [1] "it is difficult to see any evidence for a political unification of a large part of Japan as early as A.D. 369, or shortly thereafter. Yamao (1977) argues, on documentary grounds, that unification was not achieved until about A.D. 531." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Steenstrup 2011, 11)

[2]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


unknown

DESCRIPTION The earliest evidence for a “bureaucratic machinery” appears to date to the late fifth century CE [1]
"The Kofun period is commonly regarded as the state formation phase." [2]
"it is difficult to see any evidence for a political unification of a large part of Japan as early as A.D. 369, or shortly thereafter. Yamao (1977) argues, on documentary grounds, that unification was not achieved until about A.D. 531." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Steenstrup 2011, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 26) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.

[3]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


Law
absent

DESCRIPTION professional lawyers were not present until the Meiji Restoration. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Hood, David 1997. ‘Exclusivity and the Japanese Bar: Ethics or Self-Interest?’. Pacific Rim Law & Policy Journal (Pacific Rim Law & Policy Association) 6 (1).p.201.


unknown

DESCRIPTION A comprehensive legal code existed from the late seventh century. The laws of the Ritsuryo-sei were based on those in use in Tang dynasty China. [1] [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: Naomichi Ishige. 2014. The History And Culture Of Japanese Food. Routledge. London.

[2]: Ikeda Hiroshi. 2009. Japanese Armor: An Overview. Morihiro Ogawa. ed. Art of the Samurai: Japanese Arms and Armor, 1156-1868. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York.


Transport Infrastructure
present 250 CE 499 CE absent 250 CE 499 CE present 500 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 wooden tally slips used as shipping labels [1] suggest good deal of valuable trade which would have been carried along roads or tracks, which would have likely been maintained.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


DESCRIPTION 2 wooden tally slips used as shipping labels [1] suggest good deal of valuable trade which would have been carried along roads or tracks, which would have likely been maintained.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


present 250 CE 499 CE absent 250 CE 499 CE present 500 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 wooden tally slips used as shipping labels [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


DESCRIPTION 2 wooden tally slips used as shipping labels [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Ikawa-Smith 1985, 396) Ikawa-Smith, Fumiko in Misra, Virenda N. Bellwood, Peter S. 1985. Recent Advances in Indo-Pacific Prehistory: Proceedings of the International Symposium Held at Poona, December 19-21, 1978. BRILL.


unknown

DESCRIPTION irrigation canals don’t count as transport infrastructure


Special-purpose Sites
present

DESCRIPTION metal tools "abundantly being used as well as produced." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 22) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


Information / Writing System
absent 250 CE 399 CE absent 399 CE 449 CE present 399 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] "The earliest Japanese imperial chronicles, that is, the Kojiki and the Nihonshoki, were completed in AD 712 and 720, and included compilations of various historical records as well as ancestral legends dating back to ancient times" [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


present

DESCRIPTION "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] "The earliest Japanese imperial chronicles, that is, the Kojiki and the Nihonshoki, were completed in AD 712 and 720, and included compilations of various historical records as well as ancestral legends dating back to ancient times" [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


absent

DESCRIPTION "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] "The earliest Japanese imperial chronicles, that is, the Kojiki and the Nihonshoki, were completed in AD 712 and 720, and included compilations of various historical records as well as ancestral legends dating back to ancient times" [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


unknown

DESCRIPTION Not mentioned by sources.


present

DESCRIPTION "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] "The earliest Japanese imperial chronicles, that is, the Kojiki and the Nihonshoki, were completed in AD 712 and 720, and included compilations of various historical records as well as ancestral legends dating back to ancient times" [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


Information / Kinds of Written Documents
unknown

DESCRIPTION The first university (Daigaku-ryō) was founded at the end of the 7th century CE, [1] but sources consulted do not say whether its students were able to access texts containing scientific knowledge.

Reference(s):

[1]: Brown, Delmer M. 1993. The Cambridge History of Japan Volume 1: Ancient Japan. Cambridge Histories Online Cambridge University Press.p.212-213.


absent 250 CE 399 CE absent 399 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] Buddhism from 552 CE.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


DESCRIPTION 2 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] Buddhism from 552 CE.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


absent 250 CE 399 CE absent 399 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] Buddhism from 552 CE.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


DESCRIPTION 2 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] Buddhism from 552 CE.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


absent 250 CE 399 CE present 399 CE 449 CE absent 399 CE 449 CE present 450 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] e.g. used by government

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


DESCRIPTION 2 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] e.g. used by government

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


absent 250 CE 399 CE present 399 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] perhaps with Buddhism from 552 CE? The first university (Daigaku-ryō) was founded at the end of the 7th century CE [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: Brown, Delmer M. 1993. The Cambridge History of Japan Volume 1: Ancient Japan. Cambridge Histories Online Cambridge University Press.p.212-213.


DESCRIPTION 2 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] perhaps with Buddhism from 552 CE? The first university (Daigaku-ryō) was founded at the end of the 7th century CE [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: Brown, Delmer M. 1993. The Cambridge History of Japan Volume 1: Ancient Japan. Cambridge Histories Online Cambridge University Press.p.212-213.


Lists Tables and Classification:
absent 250 CE 399 CE absent 399 CE 449 CE present 399 CE 449 CE present 450 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] e.g. used by government. earliest use of script would likely have involved simple lists.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


DESCRIPTION 2 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] e.g. used by government. earliest use of script would likely have involved simple lists.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


absent 250 CE 399 CE present 399 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] perhaps with Buddhism from 552 CE? "The earliest Japanese imperial chronicles, that is, the Kojiki and the Nihonshoki, were completed in AD 712 and 720, and included compilations of various historical records as well as ancestral legends dating back to ancient times". [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


DESCRIPTION 2 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] perhaps with Buddhism from 552 CE? "The earliest Japanese imperial chronicles, that is, the Kojiki and the Nihonshoki, were completed in AD 712 and 720, and included compilations of various historical records as well as ancestral legends dating back to ancient times". [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)

[2]: (Mizoguchi 2013, 32) Mizoguchi, Koji. 2013. The Archaeology of Japan: From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge University Press.


present

DESCRIPTION "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] Code removed as there is no evidence to infer presence, as opposed to religious/practical texts.

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


absent 250 CE 399 CE absent 399 CE 449 CE present 399 CE 449 CE present 450 CE 537 CE

DESCRIPTION 1 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] e.g. used by government

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


DESCRIPTION 2 "To all appearances, writing as such, in the form of Chinese Classics, was introduced into Japan early in the fifth century as part of the great cultural influx from Paekche." [1] e.g. used by government

Reference(s):

[1]: (Frellesvig 2010, 11)


Information / Money
unknown

DESCRIPTION no data.


absent

DESCRIPTION The Fukui domain was the first to issue paper currency, doing so in 1661, and other domains followed this practice.’ [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Deal, William E. 2005. Handbook to Life in Medieval and Early Modern Japan. Oxford University Press.p.126.


absent

DESCRIPTION "The earliest coins from Japan date to the Yayoi period (300 B.C.E.-300 C.E.), but these were Chinese imports and were probably regarded as ornaments of no monetary value." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Higham 2009, 84) Higham, Charles. 2009. Encylopedia of Ancient Asian Civilizations. Infobase Publishing.


present

DESCRIPTION "The earliest coins from Japan date to the Yayoi period (300 B.C.E.-300 C.E.), but these were Chinese imports and were probably regarded as ornaments of no monetary value." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Higham 2009, 84) Higham, Charles. 2009. Encylopedia of Ancient Asian Civilizations. Infobase Publishing.


present

DESCRIPTION fish, rice, iron, bronze


Information / Postal System Information / Measurement System
Warfare Variables (Military Technologies)
Fortifications
present

DESCRIPTION Don’t have enough of the text to provide context but there is a reference for Kofun period palisades here. [1] Chinese texts (3rd century CE) refer to stockades. [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Barnes 1988, 245) Gina Lee Barnes. 1988. Protohistoric Yamato: archaeology of the first Japanese state. Issue 78. University of Michigan and the Center for Japanese Studies and the Museum of Anthropology.

[2]: (Barnes 2007, 98) Gina L Barnes. 2007. State Formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-Century Ruling Elite. Routledge. London.


present

DESCRIPTION "Tomb-era villages were quite different from their Yayoi predecessors. ... Villages might range from ten to sixty or more pit dwellings, along with several storehouses, and residences might be grouped in units of two or three, suggesting that they contained extended families. In larger settlements, archaeologists have uncovered the remains of sizable wooden structures, sometimes surrounded by a moat or stone walls." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Farris 2009, 17) William Wayne Farris. 2009. Japan To 1600: A Social and Economic History. University of Hawai’i Press. Honolulu.


unknown

DESCRIPTION "Tomb-era villages were quite different from their Yayoi predecessors. ... Villages might range from ten to sixty or more pit dwellings, along with several storehouses, and residences might be grouped in units of two or three, suggesting that they contained extended families. In larger settlements, archaeologists have uncovered the remains of sizable wooden structures, sometimes surrounded by a moat or stone walls." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Farris 2009, 17) William Wayne Farris. 2009. Japan To 1600: A Social and Economic History. University of Hawai’i Press. Honolulu.


Settlements in a Defensive Position:
present

DESCRIPTION Settlements were surrounded by ditches that could have been used for defensive purposes. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 200


absent

DESCRIPTION not possible at this time


present

DESCRIPTION "Tomb-era villages were quite different from their Yayoi predecessors. ... Villages might range from ten to sixty or more pit dwellings, along with several storehouses, and residences might be grouped in units of two or three, suggesting that they contained extended families. In larger settlements, archaeologists have uncovered the remains of sizable wooden structures, sometimes surrounded by a moat or stone walls." [1] There were apparently fewer moats in the Kofun era compared to the Yayoi. According to Kenichi Saski "the new age was also marked by the disappearance of moats enclosing settlements" although "influential people appeared, who could maintain larger storehouses ... these influential people resided within moated enclosures together with ordinary residences. In the Kofun era, settlements were no longer enclosed by moats, but elites began to reside in mansions, enclosed by moats and spatially distinct from ordinary settlements." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Farris 2009, 17) William Wayne Farris. 2009. Japan To 1600: A Social and Economic History. University of Hawai’i Press. Honolulu.

[2]: (Saski 2017, 68) Ken’ichi Saski. The Kofun era and early state formation. Karl F Friday. ed. 2017. Routledge Handbook of Premodern Japanese History. Routledge. Abingdon.


present

DESCRIPTION Site at Yoshinogari (3rd century CE) had surrounding ditch and ramparts, watchtower and inner moat. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Barnes 2007, 98-99) Gina L Barnes. 2007. State Formation in Japan: Emergence of a 4th-Century Ruling Elite. Routledge. London.


present

DESCRIPTION Settlements were surrounded by ditches that could have been used for defensive purposes [1] .

Reference(s):

[1]: K. Mizoguchi, 2013. The Archaeology of Japan. From the Earliest Rice Farming Villages to the Rise of the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 200


absent

DESCRIPTION no evidence of fortresses with multiple rings of fortifications


Military use of Metals
absent

DESCRIPTION Tatara furnaces, or versions thereof, existed since 300 BCE. Not sure when this steel was first produced. It is unlikely the best steel was produced from the very earliest times. Asuka period seems likely. "If black sand was used it would contain hypter-eutectoid steel (carbon content 1.2-1.7 percent) called tama hagane and pieces of iron with a lower carbon content (less than 0.8 percent). The tama hagane was the first quality steel used in swords." [1] References that support tamahagane steel being better than the first steels produced in Japan: "Present study elucidates that the tatara iron and its manufacturing procedure gives distinctive features to Japanese swords which is different from ordinary steel. It is also notable that Japanese swordsmith utilized lath martensite without knowing details about it." [2] Tamahagane steel (metal investigated was crafted by a modern swordsmith) has been "investigated with optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and electron probe micro analysis methods. Microstructures have been found to be a combination of ferrite and pearlite with a lot of nonmetallic inclusions." [3]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Wittner 2008, 25) David G Wittner. 2008. Technology and the Culture of Progress in Meiji Japan. Routledge. Abingdon.

[2]: Ananda Kumar Das. Takuya Ohba. Shigakazu Morito. Muneo Yaso. "Evidence of Lath Martensite in High-C Japanese Sword Produced from Tamahagane Steel by Tatara Process." 2010. Materials Science Forum. Vols. 654-656. Trans Tech Publications. pp. 138-141

[3]: Go Takami. Takuya Ohba. Shigekazu Morito. Ananda Kumar Das. "Microstructural Observation on Materials of the Japanese Sword under Fold-Forging Process. 2010. Materials Science Forum. Vols. 654-656. Trans Tech Publications. pp. 134-137


present

DESCRIPTION From Early Yayoi. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Okazaki 1993, 279) Okazaki Takashi. Japan and the continent in the Jomon and Yayoi periods. Janet Goodwin trans. Delmer M Brown. ed. 1993. The Cambridge History of Japan. Volume 1. Ancient Japan. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.


present

DESCRIPTION required for bronze


present

DESCRIPTION ’The establishment of Chinese provinces in the northern Korean Peninsula conveyed knowledge of bronze and iron closer to the Japanese islands, and with Yayoi bronze spears, halberds, swords, mirrors, and bells appeared. In each case, the imported items were transformed by local bronze casters into forms more suited to local tastes and requirements. Thus the weapons were enlarged and broadened.’ [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Charles F W Higham. 2004. Encyclopedia of Ancient Asian Civilizations. Facts On File, Inc. New York. p.404


Projectiles
absent

DESCRIPTION "unlike the crossbows that were used as anti-personnel weapons, there does not appear to be any record of trebuchet use in Japan, simply because the siege situation did not demand it." [1] ‘it is not until 1468[CE] that we find an unambiguous reference to the use of traction trebuchets in Japan.’ [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Turnball 2002) Turnball, S. 2002. Siege Weapons of the Far East (1): AD 612-1300. Osprey Publishing.

[2]: Turnbull, Stephen. 2012. Siege Weapons of the Far East (1): AD 612-1300. Vol. 43. Osprey Publishing.p.23.


unknown

DESCRIPTION Could find no reference to support the presence of siege engines.


present

DESCRIPTION "Slings, used to hurl fist-sized rocks or spheres of clay shaped roughly like miniature rugby balls, also appeared during the Yaoi age, distributed in a geographic pattern that suggests mutually exclusive regional preferences for the sling or the bow." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Friday 2004, 68) Karl F Friday. 2005. Samurai, Warfare and the State in Early Medieval Japan. Routledge. New York.


present

DESCRIPTION "Instead, without ready access to supplies of bone and horn, the Japanese fashioned their bows from wood or from laminates of wood and bamboo. The earliest designs were of plain wood ... " [1] "The earliest arrowheads made by iron appeared during Middle Yayoi, and almost all of them are from northern Kyushu. The arrowheads in Kyushu were 3-4 cm long and shaped like a narrow triangle with a vault-shaped base. This shape is the traditional shape of stone arrowheads." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Friday 2004, 68) Karl F Friday. 2005. Samurai, Warfare and the State in Early Medieval Japan. Routledge. New York.

[2]: Lars Vargo. 1982. Social and economic conditions for the formation of the early Japanese state. Stockholm University.


present

DESCRIPTION Spears (small, could be thrown?) ’The sizes and shapes of spears cast in middle Yayoi Japan, moreover, suggest that they had a ritual function. These, in contrast with the small spears imported from Korea in the early Yayoi period, ranged in length from fifty to ninety centimeters, to large and unwieldly for combat. Some were placed in graves as ritual objects that symbolized authority and power, but the longest were buried elsewhere, as if for some religious purpose.’ [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Okazaki Takashi. Japan and the continent in the Jomon and Yayoi periods. Janet Goodwin trans. Delmer M Brown. ed. 1993. The Cambridge History of Japan. Volume 1. Ancient Japan. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge. p. 279


absent

DESCRIPTION not in widespread use until 1543 CE [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Deal, William E. 2005. Handbook to Life in Medieval and Early Modern Japan. Oxford University Press.p.163-64.


absent

DESCRIPTION before use of gunpowder in Japan


unknown

DESCRIPTION Crossbow known and used in Japan sometime after the invention in China (from date not stated) "but neither the ritsuryo armies nor the bushi appear to have developed much interest in it, preferring to rely instead on the long bow. The ritsuryo military statutes provided for only two soldiers from each fifty-man company to be trained as oyumi operators, and no later source indicates that this ratio was ever increased. Hand-held crossbows and crossbowmen are not mentioned in the statutes at all." "The bow staves of Chinese crossbows were composites of wood, bone, sinew and glue ... But, as we have observed, the Japanese lacked supplies of animal products, and fashioned their bows from wood and bamboo instead, which required that the weapons be long. Manufacturing crossbows with composite bow staves of wood and bamboo comparable in length to those of regular bows would have resulted in a weapon too unwieldy to be practical". However some crossbows were imported. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Friday 2004, 74-76) Karl F Friday. 2005. Samurai, Warfare and the State in Early Medieval Japan. Routledge. New York.


absent

DESCRIPTION "Compound or composite bows of the sort favored on the Asian continent - made by laminating together layers of wood, animal tendon and horn - were known in Japan by the late ninth century, but never widely adopted. Instead, without ready access to supplies of bone and horn, the Japanese fashioned their bows from wood or from laminates of wood and bamboo. The earliest designs were of plain wood ... " [1] "These first compound bows, called fusetake yumi, featured a single strip of bamboo laminated to the outside face of the wood, using a paster (called nibe) made from fish bladders. Sometime around the turn of the thirteenth century, a second bamboo laminate was added to the inside face of the bow, to create the sammai uchi yumi. In the fifteenth century, two additional bamboo slats were addeded to the sides, so that the wooden core was now completely encased, producing the shiochiku yumi. The higo yumi used for traditional Japanese archery today appeared sometime during the seventeenth century." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Friday 2004, 68) Karl F Friday. 2005. Samurai, Warfare and the State in Early Medieval Japan. Routledge. New York.

[2]: (Friday 2004, 69) Karl F Friday. 2005. Samurai, Warfare and the State in Early Medieval Japan. Routledge. New York.


absent

DESCRIPTION Weapon of the Americas, no evidence of use


Handheld weapons
present

DESCRIPTION Kanabou (金棒) is noted as being a club weapon in use: ’Sort of iron club used by warriors in ancient times, and a favorite weapon of some monk-warriors (Heisou) in the Heian and Kamakura periods’ [1] iron scepter-like rods and wooden staffs have been found since early Kofun with the previous quote to infer presence even if there are no records at the time indicating their use in warfare [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: Louis Frederick, Japan Encyclopedia, translated by Kathe Roth, The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 202, p. 466

[2]: Kidder Jr., J. Edward, 2007. Himiko and Japan’s Elusive Kingdom of Yamatai Honolulu: Hawaii University Press. p. 109-110


present

DESCRIPTION "The establishment of Chinese provinces in the northern Korean Peninsula conveyed knowledge of bronze and iron closer to the Japanese islands, and with Yayoi bronze spears, halberds, swords, mirrors, and bells appeared. In each case, the imported items were transformed by local bronze casters into forms more suited to local tastes and requirements. Thus the weapons were enlarged and broadened." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Charles F W Higham. 2004. Encyclopedia of Ancient Asian Civilizations. Facts On File, Inc. New York. p.404


present

DESCRIPTION "The establishment of Chinese provinces in the northern Korean Peninsula conveyed knowledge of bronze and iron closer to the Japanese islands, and with Yayoi bronze spears, halberds, swords, mirrors, and bells appeared. In each case, the imported items were transformed by local bronze casters into forms more suited to local tastes and requirements. Thus the weapons were enlarged and broadened." [1] ’The sizes and shapes of spears cast in middle Yayoi Japan, moreover, suggest that they had a ritual function. These, in contrast with the small spears imported from Korea in the early Yayoi period, ranged in length from fifty to ninety centimeters, to large and unwieldly for combat. Some were placed in graves as ritual objects that symbolized authority and power, but the longest were buried elsewhere, as if for some religious purpose.’ [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: Charles F W Higham. 2004. Encyclopedia of Ancient Asian Civilizations. Facts On File, Inc. New York. p.404

[2]: Okazaki Takashi. Japan and the continent in the Jomon and Yayoi periods. Janet Goodwin trans. Delmer M Brown. ed. 1993. The Cambridge History of Japan. Volume 1. Ancient Japan. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge. p. 279


present

DESCRIPTION ‘First used by the early Kamakura period, the naginata is closest to a European glaive in form, with an elongated shaft, and a single-edged blade curved more than that of a Kamakura-period Japanese tachi. Most likely, the naginata was based upon similar weapons introduced from China by 300 C.E. which have been unearthed in graves.’ [1] According to one military historian, warriors of the Land of Wa (Japan) mentioned by early Han annals used halberds. [2] - do polity/region specialists consider these early Han annals a reliable source?

Reference(s):

[1]: Deal, William E. 2005. Handbook to Life in Medieval and Early Modern Japan. Oxford University Press.p.161.

[2]: (Gabriel 2002, 316) Richard A Gabriel. 2002. The Great Armies of Antiquity. Praeger. Westport.


present

DESCRIPTION In use since Yayoi


present

DESCRIPTION long halberds, some almost 50 centimeters that were produced in Japan. [1] These would have functioned as battle axes rather than polearms.

Reference(s):

[1]: Okazaki Takashi. Japan and the continent in the Jomon and Yayoi periods. Janet Goodwin trans. Delmer M Brown. ed. 1993. The Cambridge History of Japan. Volume 1. Ancient Japan. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge. p. 279


Animals used in warfare
present

DESCRIPTION Horses were used in warfare from the 4th century CE onwards. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Nussbaum, Louis Frédéric and Käthe Roth. (2005). "Horses" in Japan Encyclopedia, pp. 354-355.


absent

DESCRIPTION I could find no evidence of elephants - but no sources saying that they were not used either (although I think this is a very safe bet)


absent

DESCRIPTION I could find no evidence of camels - but no sources saying that they were not used either (although I think this is a very safe bet)


Armor
present

DESCRIPTION ’Shields were commonly used in nearly all military contexts in Japan, beginning with prehistory’ [1] According to one military historian, warriors of the Land of Wa (Japan) mentioned by early Han annals used shields [2] - do polity/region specialists consider these early Han annals a reliable source?

Reference(s):

[1]: Deal, William E. 2005. Handbook to Life in Medieval and Early Modern Japan. Oxford University Press.p.172.

[2]: (Gabriel 2002, 316) Richard A Gabriel. 2002. The Great Armies of Antiquity. Praeger. Westport.


unknown 250 CE 500 CE present 501 CE 538 CE *Bad Years, polity duration: [250, 537]

DESCRIPTION Scaled armors started being widely used in the 6th century CE [1] . "The earliest armor used in Japan, as elsewhere, was padded or made of scales or rings sewn on cloth." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: Bryant, Anthony J. 1991. Early Samurai: 200-1500 AD. Vol. 35. Osprey Publishing.p.46.

[2]: (Stone 1999, 60-61) George Cameron Stone. 1999. Glossary of the Construction, Decoration and Use of Arms and Armor in All Countries and in All Times. Dover Publications, Inc. Mineola.


absent

DESCRIPTION "Samurai protection from the 5th to 8th centuries, called ’tanko,’ was made of discrete, overlapping iron plates.’ [1] Does this count as plate armor or is it scaled armor?

Reference(s):

[1]: (Nolan 2006, 26) Cathal J Nolan. 2006. The Age of Wars of Religion, 1000-1650: An Encyclopedia of Global Warfare and Civilization. Volume 1 A - K. Greenwood Press. Westport.


unknown

DESCRIPTION "The earliest armor used in Japan, as elsewhere, was padded or made of scales or rings sewn on cloth." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Stone 1999, 60-61) George Cameron Stone. 1999. Glossary of the Construction, Decoration and Use of Arms and Armor in All Countries and in All Times. Dover Publications, Inc. Mineola.


present

DESCRIPTION "The earliest armor used in Japan, as elsewhere, was padded or made of scales or rings sewn on cloth." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Stone 1999, 60-61) George Cameron Stone. 1999. Glossary of the Construction, Decoration and Use of Arms and Armor in All Countries and in All Times. Dover Publications, Inc. Mineola.


absent 250 CE 299 CE unknown 300 CE 349 CE present 350 CE 538 CE *Bad Years, polity duration: [250, 537]

DESCRIPTION Laminar armors were introduced in the 4th century CE [1] .

Reference(s):

[1]: Farris, W. W., 1998. Sacred texts and buried treasures: issues in the historical archaeology of ancient Japan.University of Hawaii Press, p.75


absent 250 CE 400 CE present 401 CE 538 CE *Bad Years, polity duration: [250, 537]

DESCRIPTION Helmets were introduced in Japan in the 5th century CE [1] . "The earliest armor used in Japan, as elsewhere, was padded or made of scales or rings sewn on cloth." [2]

Reference(s):

[1]: Bryant, Anthony J. 1991. Early Samurai: 200-1500 AD. Vol. 35. Osprey Publishing.p.45.

[2]: (Stone 1999, 60-61) George Cameron Stone. 1999. Glossary of the Construction, Decoration and Use of Arms and Armor in All Countries and in All Times. Dover Publications, Inc. Mineola.


absent

DESCRIPTION Before the time of ’definite’ knowledge "The earliest armor used in Japan, as elsewhere, was padded or made of scales or rings sewn on cloth. By the 10th century, the earliest time of which we have definite knowledge, it had assumed a characteristic form which it retained until armor was abandoned in the middle of the 19th century." [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: (Stone 1999, 60-61) George Cameron Stone. 1999. Glossary of the Construction, Decoration and Use of Arms and Armor in All Countries and in All Times. Dover Publications, Inc. Mineola.


absent 250 CE 300 CE present 301 CE 538 CE *Bad Years, polity duration: [250, 537]

DESCRIPTION Japanese breastplates (Do) started being manufactered in the 4th century CE. [1]

Reference(s):

[1]: Farris, W. W., 1998. Sacred texts and buried treasures: issues in the historical archaeology of ancient Japan.University of Hawaii Press,P.75


Naval technology
unknown

DESCRIPTION low amount of trade and polities of Japan/Korea may not have attempted to control sea routes at this time.


unknown

DESCRIPTION rivers are present, very likely the technology was in use


Merchant Ships Pressed Into Service:
unknown

DESCRIPTION low amount of trade and polities of Japan/Korea may not have attempted to control sea routes at this time.


Human Sacrifice Data
Human Sacrifice is the deliberate and ritualized killing of a person to please or placate supernatural entities (including gods, spirits, and ancestors) or gain other supernatural benefits.
- Nothing coded yet.
- Nothing coded yet.