Japan is an island country in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies off the eastern coast of the Asian continent and stretches from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and the Philippine Sea in the south; the kanji that make up Japan's name mean "sun origin", it is called the "Land of the Rising Sun". Japan is a stratovolcanic archipelago consisting of about 6,852 islands; the four largest are Honshu, Hokkaido and Shikoku, which make up about ninety-seven percent of Japan's land area and are referred to as home islands. The country is divided into 47 prefectures in eight regions, with Hokkaido being the northernmost prefecture and Okinawa being the southernmost one; the population of 127 million is the world's tenth largest. 90.7 % of people live in cities. About 13.8 million people live in the capital of Japan. The Greater Tokyo Area is the most populous metropolitan area in the world with over 38 million people. Archaeological research indicates; the first written mention of Japan is in Chinese history texts from the 1st century AD.
Influence from other regions China, followed by periods of isolation from Western Europe, has characterized Japan's history. From the 12th century until 1868, Japan was ruled by successive feudal military shōguns who ruled in the name of the Emperor. Japan entered into a long period of isolation in the early 17th century, ended in 1853 when a United States fleet pressured Japan to open to the West. After nearly two decades of internal conflict and insurrection, the Imperial Court regained its political power in 1868 through the help of several clans from Chōshū and Satsuma – and the Empire of Japan was established. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, victories in the First Sino-Japanese War, the Russo-Japanese War and World War I allowed Japan to expand its empire during a period of increasing militarism; the Second Sino-Japanese War of 1937 expanded into part of World War II in 1941, which came to an end in 1945 following the Japanese surrender. Since adopting its revised constitution on May 3, 1947, during the occupation led by SCAP, the sovereign state of Japan has maintained a unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy with an Emperor and an elected legislature called the National Diet.
Japan is a member of the ASEAN Plus mechanism, UN, the OECD, the G7, the G8, the G20, is considered a great power. Its economy is the world's third-largest by nominal GDP and the fourth-largest by purchasing power parity, it is the world's fourth-largest exporter and fourth-largest importer. Japan benefits from a skilled and educated workforce. Although it has renounced its right to declare war, Japan maintains a modern military with the world's eighth-largest military budget, used for self-defense and peacekeeping roles. Japan is a developed country with a high standard of living and Human Development Index, its population enjoys the highest life expectancy and third lowest infant mortality rate in the world, but is experiencing issues due to an aging population and low birthrate. Japan is renowned for its historical and extensive cinema, influential music industry, video gaming, rich cuisine and its major contributions to science and modern technology; the Japanese word for Japan is 日本, pronounced Nihon or Nippon and means "the origin of the sun".
The character nichi means "sun" or "day". The compound therefore means "origin of the sun" and is the source of the popular Western epithet "Land of the Rising Sun"; the earliest record of the name Nihon appears in the Chinese historical records of the Tang dynasty, the Old Book of Tang. At the end of the seventh century, a delegation from Japan requested that Nihon be used as the name of their country; this name may have its origin in a letter sent in 607 and recorded in the official history of the Sui dynasty. Prince Shōtoku, the Regent of Japan, sent a mission to China with a letter in which he called himself "the Emperor of the Land where the Sun rises"; the message said: "Here, I, the emperor of the country where the sun rises, send a letter to the emperor of the country where the sun sets. How are you". Prior to the adoption of Nihon, other terms such as Yamato and Wakoku were used; the term Wa is a homophone of Wo 倭, used by the Chinese as a designation for the Japanese as early as the third century Three Kingdoms period.
Another form of Wa, Wei in Chinese) was used for an early state in Japan called Nakoku during the Han dynasty. However, the Japanese disliked some connotation of Wa 倭, it was therefore replaced with the substitute character Wa, meaning "togetherness, harmony"; the English word Japan derives from the historical Chinese pronunciation of 日本. The Old Mandarin or early Wu Chinese pronunciation of Japan was recorded by Marco Polo as Cipangu. In modern Shanghainese, a Wu dialect, the pronunciation of characters 日本; the old Malay word for Japan, Japun or Japang, was borrowed from a southern coastal Chinese dialect Fukienese or Ningpo – and this Malay word was encountered by Portuguese traders in Southeast Asia in the 16th century. These Early Portuguese traders brought the word
The Asuka period was a period in the history of Japan lasting from 538 to 710, although its beginning could be said to overlap with the preceding Kofun period. The Yamato polity evolved during the Asuka period, named after the Asuka region, about 25 km south of the modern city of Nara; the Asuka period is characterized by its significant artistic and political transformations, having their origins in the late Kofun period but affected by the arrival of Buddhism from China. The introduction of Buddhism marked a change in Japanese society; the Asuka period is distinguished by the change in the name of the country from Wa to Nihon. The term "Asuka period" was first used to describe a period in the history of Japanese fine-arts and architecture, it was proposed by fine-arts scholars Sekino Tadasu and Okakura Kakuzō around 1900. Sekino dated the Asuka period as ending with the Taika Reform of 646. Okakura, saw it as ending with the transfer of the capital to the Heijō Palace of Nara. Although historians use Okakura's dating, many historians of art and architecture prefer Sekino's dating and use the term "Hakuhō period" to refer to the successive period.
The Yamato polity was distinguished by powerful great clans or extended families, including their dependents. Each clan was headed by a patriarch who performed sacred rites for the clan's kami to ensure the long-term welfare of the clan. Clan members were the High Nobility, the Imperial line that controlled the Yamato polity was at its pinnacle; the Asuka period, as a sub-division of the Yamato period, is the first time in Japanese history when the Emperor of Japan ruled uncontested from modern-day Nara Prefecture known as Yamato Province. The Yamato polity was concentrated in the Asuka region and exercised power over clans in Kyūshū and Honshū, bestowing titles, some hereditary, on clan chieftains; the Yamato name became synonymous with all of Japan as the Yamato rulers suppressed other clans and acquired agricultural lands. Based on Chinese models, they developed a central administration and an imperial court attended by subordinate clan chieftains but with no permanent capital. By the mid-seventh century, the agricultural lands had grown to a substantial public domain, subject to central policy.
The basic administrative unit of the Gokishichidō system was the county, society was organized into occupation groups. Most people were farmers; the Soga clan intermarried with the imperial family, by 587 Soga no Umako, the Soga chieftain, was powerful enough to install his nephew as emperor and to assassinate him and replace him with the Empress Suiko. Suiko, the first of eight sovereign empresses, is sometimes considered a mere figurehead for Umako and Prince Regent Shōtoku Taishi; however she wielded power in her own right, the role of Shōtoku Taishi is exaggerated to the point of legend. Shōtoku, recognized as a great intellectual of this period of reform, was a devout Buddhist and was well-read in Chinese literature, he was influenced by Confucian principles, including the Mandate of Heaven, which suggested that the sovereign ruled at the will of a supreme force. Under Shōtoku's direction, Confucian models of rank and etiquette were adopted, his Seventeen-article constitution prescribed ways to bring harmony to a chaotic society in Confucian terms.
In addition, Shōtoku adopted the Chinese calendar, developed a system of trade roads, built numerous Buddhist temples, had court chronicles compiled, sent students to China to study Buddhism and Confucianism, sent Ono no Imoko to China as an emissary. Six official missions of envoys and students were sent to China in the seventh century; some remained twenty years or more. The sending of such scholars to learn Chinese political systems showed significant change from envoys in the Kofun period, in which the five kings of Wa sent envoys for the approval of their domains. In a move resented by the Chinese, Shōtoku sought equality with the Chinese emperor by sending official correspondence, addressed, "From the Son of Heaven in the Land of the Rising Sun to the Son of Heaven of the Land of the Setting Sun." Some would argue that Shōtoku's bold step set a precedent: Japan never again accepted a "subordinate" status in its relations with China, except for Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, who accepted such a relationship with China in the 15th century.
As a result, Japan in this period received no title from Chinese dynasties, while they did send tribute. From the Chinese point of view, the class or position of Japan was demoted from previous centuries in which the kings received titles. On the other hand, Japan loosened its political relationships with China and established extraordinary cultural and intellectual relationships. About twenty years after the deaths of Shōtoku Taishi, Soga no Umako, Empress Suiko, court intrigues over succession led to a palace coup in 645 against the Soga clan's monopolized control of the government; the revolt was led by Prince Naka no Ōe and Nakatomi no Kamatari, who seized control of the court from the Soga family and introduced the Taika Reform. The Japanese era corresponding to the years 645–649 was thus named Taika, referring to the Reform, meaning "great change"; the revolt leading to the Taika Reform is called the Isshi Incident, referring to the Chinese zodiac year in which the coup took place
Emperor Kōbun was the 39th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. Kōbun's reign lasted only a few months in 671–672. Emperor Kōbun was named the 39th emperor by the Meiji government in 1870. In his lifetime, he was known as Prince Ōtomo, he was the favorite son of Emperor Tenji. Contemporary historians now place the reign of Emperor Kōbun between the reigns of Emperor Tenji and Emperor Tenmu. Prince Ōtomo was only given his posthumous title and name in 1870. Post-Meiji chronology In the 10th year of Tenji, in the 11th month: Emperor Tenji, in the 10th year of his reign, designated his son as his heir. Shortly thereafter, Emperor Kōbun is said to have acceded to the throne. If this understanding were valid it would follow:In the 1st year of Kōbun: Emperor Kōbun, in the 1st year of his reign, died. Shortly thereafter, Emperor Tenmu could be said to have acceded to the throne. Pre-Meiji chronology Prior to the 19th century, Ōtomo was understood to have been a mere interloper, a pretender, an anomaly.
Control of the throne was wrested by Emperor Tenchi's brother, Prince Ōama, during the Jinshin War, after which Emperor Kōbun committed suicide. For centuries, the hapless Prince Ōtomo was not considered to have been a part of the traditional order of succession; the actual site of Kōbun's grave is known. This emperor is traditionally venerated at a memorial Shinto shrine at Shiga; the Imperial Household Agency designates this location as Kōbun's mausoleum. It is formally named Nagara no Yamasaki no misasagi; the years of Kōbun's reign are not linked by scholars to any era or nengō. The Taika era innovation of naming time periods – nengō – languished until Mommu reasserted an imperial right by proclaiming the commencement of Taihō in 701. See Japanese era name – "Non-nengo periods" See Kōbun. In this context and Ishida's translation of Gukanshō offers an explanation about the years of Empress Jitō's reign which muddies a sense of easy clarity in the pre-Taiho time-frame: "The eras that fell in this reign were: the remaining seven years of Shuchō.
In the third year of the Taka era, Empress Jitō yielded the throne to the Crown Prince." The top court officials during Emperor Kōbun's reign included: Sadaijin, Soga no Akae, 672 Udaijin, Nakatomi no Kane, 672 Empress Consort: Princess Tōchi, Emperor Tenmu’s daughter First son: Prince Kadono Empress: Fujiwara no Mimimotoji, Fujiwara no Kamatari’s daughter Princess Ichishi-hime Emperor Kōbun had another son named Prince Yota, whose mother is unknown. Emperor of Japan List of Emperors of Japan Imperial cult Aston, William George.. Nihongi: Chronicles of Japan from the Earliest Times to A. D. 697. London: Kegan Paul, Trubner. OCLC 448337491 Brown, Delmer M. and Ichirō Ishida, eds.. Gukanshō: The Future and the Past. Berkeley: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-03460-0; the Imperial House of Japan. Kyoto: Ponsonby Memorial Society. OCLC 194887 Titsingh, Isaac.. Nihon Ōdai Ichiran. Paris: Royal Asiatic Society, Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland. OCLC 5850691 Varley, H. Paul..
Jinnō Shōtōki: A Chronicle of Gods and Sovereigns. New York: Columbia University Press. ISBN 978-0-231-04940-5.
The Nara period of the history of Japan covers the years from AD 710 to 794. Empress Genmei established the capital of Heijō-kyō. Except for a five-year period, when the capital was moved again, it remained the capital of Japanese civilization until Emperor Kanmu established a new capital, Nagaoka-kyō, in 784, before moving to Heian-kyō, modern Kyoto, a decade in 794. Most of Japanese society during this period was centered on villages. Most of the villagers followed a religion based on the worship of natural and ancestral spirits called kami; the capital at Nara was modeled after Chang the capital city of Tang dynasty. In many other ways, the Japanese upper classes patterned themselves after the Chinese, including adopting Chinese written system and the religion of Buddhism. Concentrated efforts by the imperial court to record and document its history produced the first works of Japanese literature during the Nara period. Works such as the Kojiki and the Nihon Shoki were political in nature, used to record and therefore justify and establish the supremacy of the rule of the emperors within Japan.
With the spread of written language, the writing of Japanese poetry, known in Japanese as waka, began. The largest and longest-surviving collection of Japanese poetry, the Man'yōshū, was compiled from poems composed between 600 and 759 CE. This, other Nara texts, used Chinese characters to express the sounds of Japanese, known as man'yōgana. Before the Taihō Code was established, the capital was customarily moved after the death of an emperor because of the ancient belief that a place of death was polluted. Reforms and bureaucratization of government led to the establishment of a permanent imperial capital at Heijō-kyō, or Nara, in AD 710, it is to be noted that the capital was moved shortly to Kuni-kyō in 740–744, to Naniwa-kyō in 744–745, to Shigarakinomiya in 745, moved back to Nara in 745. Nara was Japan's first urban center, it soon had some 10,000 people worked in government jobs. Economic and administrative activity increased during the Nara period. Roads linked Nara to provincial capitals, taxes were collected more efficiently and routinely.
Coins were minted, if not used. Outside the Nara area, there was little commercial activity, in the provinces the old Shōtoku land reform systems declined. By the mid-eighth century, shōen, one of the most important economic institutions in prehistoric Japan, began to rise as a result of the search for a more manageable form of landholding. Local administration became more self-sufficient, while the breakdown of the old land distribution system and the rise of taxes led to the loss or abandonment of land by many people who became the "wave people"; some of these "public people" were employed by large landholders, "public lands" reverted to the shōen. Factional fighting at the imperial court continued throughout the Nara period. Imperial family members, leading court families, such as the Fujiwara, Buddhist priests all contended for influence. Earlier this period, Prince Nagaya seized power at the court after the death of Fujiwara no Fuhito. Fuhito was succeeded by four sons, Umakai and Maro, they put the prince by Fuhito's daughter, on the throne.
In 729, they regained control. However, as a major outbreak of smallpox spread from Kyūshū in 735, all four brothers died two years resulting in temporary shrinking of Fujiwara's dominance. In 740, a member of the Fujiwara clan, Hirotsugu launched a rebellion from his base in Fukuoka, Kyushu. Although defeated, it is without doubt that the Emperor was shocked about these events, he moved the palace three times in only five years from 740, until he returned to Nara. In the late Nara period, financial burdens on the state increased, the court began dismissing nonessential officials. In 792 universal conscription was abandoned, district heads were allowed to establish private militia forces for local police work. Decentralization of authority became the rule despite the reforms of the Nara period. To return control to imperial hands, the capital was moved in 784 to Nagaoka-kyō and in 794 to Heian-kyō, about twenty-six kilometers north of Nara. By the late eleventh century, the city was popularly called Kyoto, the name it has had since.
Some of Japan's literary monuments were written during the Nara period, including the Kojiki and Nihon Shoki, the first national histories, compiled in 712 and 720 respectively. Another major cultural development of the era was the permanent establishment of Buddhism. Buddhism was introduced by Baekje in the sixth century but had a mixed reception until the Nara period, when it was heartily embraced by Emperor Shōmu. Shōmu and his Fujiwara consort were fervent Buddhists and promoted the spread of Buddhism, making it the "guardian of the state" and a way of strengthening Japanese institutions. During Shōmu's reign, the Tōdai-ji was built. Within it was placed the Great Buddha Daibutsu: a 16-metre-high, gilt-bronze statue; this Buddha was identified with the Sun Goddess, a gradual syncretism of Buddhism and Shinto ensued. Shōmu declared himself the "Servant of the Three Treasures" of Buddhism: the Buddha, the law or teachings of B
Empress Jitō was the 41st monarch of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. Jitō's reign spanned the years from 686 through 697. In the history of Japan, Jitō was the third of eight women to take on the role of empress regnant; the two female monarchs before Jitō were Kōgyoku/Saimei. The five women sovereigns reigning after Jitō were Genmei, Genshō, Kōken/Shōtoku, Meishō, Go-Sakuramachi. Empress Jitō was the daughter of Emperor Tenji, her mother was Ochi-no-Iratsume, the daughter of Minister Ō-omi Soga no Yamada-no Ishikawa Maro. She was the wife of Tenji's full brother Emperor Tenmu. Empress Jitō's given name was Unonosasara, or alternately Uno. Jitō took responsibility for court administration after the death of her husband, Emperor Tenmu, her uncle, she acceded to the throne in 687 in order to ensure the eventual succession of her son, Kusakabe-shinnō. Throughout this period, Empress Jitō ruled from the Fujiwara Palace in Yamato. In 689, Jitō prohibited Sugoroku, in 690 at enthronement she performed special ritual gave pardon and in 692 she travelled to Ise against the counsel of minister Miwa-no-Asono-Takechimaro.
Prince Kusakabe was named as crown prince to succeed Jitō. Kusakabe's son, Karu-no-o, was named as Jitō's successor, he would become known as Emperor Monmu. Empress Jitō reigned for eleven years. Although there were seven other reigning empresses, their successors were most selected from amongst the males of the paternal Imperial bloodline, why some conservative scholars argue that the women's reigns were temporary and that male-only succession tradition must be maintained in the 21st century. Empress Genmei, followed on the throne by her daughter, Empress Genshō, remains the sole exception to this conventional argument. In 697, Jitō abdicated in Mommu's favor. After this, her imperial successors who retired took the same title after abdication. Jitō continued to hold power as a cloistered ruler, which became a persistent trend in Japanese politics; the actual site of Jitō's grave is known. This empress is traditionally venerated at a memorial Shinto shrine at Nara; the Imperial Household Agency designates this location as Jitō's mausoleum.
It is formally named Ochi-no-Okanoe no misasagi. Kugyō is a collective term for the few most powerful men attached to the court of the Emperor of Japan in pre-Meiji eras. In general, this elite group included only three to four men at a time; these were hereditary courtiers whose experience and background would have brought them to the pinnacle of a life's career. During Jitō's reign, this apex of the Daijō-kan included: Daijō-daijin, Takechi-shinnō Sadaijin Udaijin Naidaijin Jitō's reign is not linked by scholars to any era or nengō; the Taika era innovation of naming time periods – nengō – languished until Mommu reasserted an imperial right by proclaiming the commencement of Taihō in 701. See Japanese era name – "Non-nengo periods" See Jitō period; however and Ishida's translation of Gukanshō offers an explanation which muddies a sense of easy clarity: "The eras that fell in this reign were: the remaining seven years of Shuchō. In the third year of the Taka era, Empress Jitō yielded the throne to the Crown Prince."
The Man'yōshū includes poems said to have been composed by Jitō: After the death of the Emperor Tenmu:Composed when the Empress climbed the Thunder Hill: One of the poems attributed to Empress Jitō was selected by Fujiwara no Teika for inclusion in the popular anthology Hyakunin Isshu: Emperor of Japan Imperial cult Japanese empresses List of Emperors of Japan Aston, William George.. Nihongi: Chronicles of Japan from the Earliest Times to A. D. 697. London: Kegan Paul, Trubner. OCLC 448337491 Brown, Delmer M. and Ichirō Ishida, eds.. Gukanshō: The Future and the Past. Berkeley: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-03460-0. "Hyakunin-Isshu: Single Songs of a Hundred Poets" in Transactions of the Asia Society of Japan. Tokyo: Asia Society of Japan.... Click link for digitized, full-text copy __________.. Kokka taikan. Tokyo: Teikoku Toshokan, Meiji 30–34. [reprinted Shinten kokka taikan, 10 vols. + 10 index vols. Kadokawa Shoten, Tokyo, 1983–1992. ISBN 978-4-04-020142-9 Nippon Gakujutsu Shinkōkai..
Man'yōshū. Tokyo: Iwanami shoten. [reprinted by Columbia University Press, New York, 1965. ISBN 0-231-08620-2. Rprinted by Dover Publications, New York, 2005. ISBN 978-0-486-43959-4 Ponsonby-Fane, Richard Arthur Brabazon.. The Imperial House of Japan. Kyoto: Ponsonby Memorial Society. OCLC 194887 Titsingh, Isaac.. Nihon Ōdai Ichiran. Paris: Royal Asiatic Society, Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland. OCLC 5850691 Varley, H. Paul.. Jinnō Shōtōki: A Chronicle of Gods and Sovereigns. New York: Columbia University Press. ISBN 978-0-231-04940-5.
Fujiwara no Fuhito
Fujiwara no Fuhito was a powerful member of the imperial court of Japan during the Asuka and Nara periods. Second son of Fujiwara no Kamatari, he had sons by two women, those sons were the founders of the four principal lineages of the Fujiwara clan: the South, North and Capital lineages, he had four daughters by two other women. Three by Kamohime, one by Tachibana no Michiyo. One daughter by Kamohime became Emperor Monmu's wife Miyako, who in turn gave birth to Emperor Shōmu; the daughter by Michiyo became the empress of his grandson Shōmu, Empress Kōmyō. During the reign of Emperor Monmu, the government ordered that only the descendants of Fuhito could bear the Fujiwara surname and could be appointed in the Office of Dajokan, the center of administratives. Fuhito was 13 years old, his father Kamatari had been a strong supporter of Emperor Tenji, but Kamatari had died and Fuhito was too young to be appointed a governmental officer, so he was not involved in this political conflict. In 688 he appeared first as a courtier.
In 697 Prince Karu, the son of Prince Kusakabe and therefore grandson of Emperor Tenmu and Empress Jitō, was appointed crown prince. Fuhito supported this appointment and gained the favor of Empress Jitō. After that, his position in the court rose steadily. In 701 Prince Obito the emperor Shōmu was born by Miyako. Fuhito succeeded in persuading the court to appoint Obito the crown prince, made his other daughter a wife of Obito; until only a royal lady could be promoted to the empress, but he succeeded in gaining his daughter the position of empress of Obito by the emperor Shōmu. It was the first empress, he moved Yamashina-dera, the Buddhist temple, the main temple his clan supported, to Nara and renamed it Kōfuku-ji. After his death, Kasuga shrine, the main Shinto shrine of the Fujiwara clan, was settled near Kofuku-ji in 768, he played a role in the establishment of the state law, ritsuryō, in Japan. He participated in the edition called Taihō Ritsuryō, he joined in making its revision, the Yōrō ritsuryō.
Before its completion, he died in the summer of 720. When he died, he was appointed one of the ministers. After his death the court honored him with two titles Bunchu Kō and Tankai Kō and with the office of Daijō-daijin, the highest office of the court, he had four sons: Fujiwara no Muchimaro, Fujiwara no Fusasaki, Fujiwara no Umakai and Fujiwara no Maro. His son Fusasaki would become the ancestor of the regent line of the Fujiwara clan. Soga no Shōshi, daughter of Soga no Murajiko Muchimaro Fusasaki Umakai Kamo no Hime, daughter of Kamo no Emishi Miyako, married to Emperor Monmu Nagako, married to Prince Nagaya Ioe no Iratsume, half-sister of Fuhito Maro Agatainukai-no-Tachimana no Michiyo Asukabe-hime, Empress of Emperor Shōmu Tabino, married to Tachibana no Moroe Senior First Rank
The Dazaifu is a Japanese term for the regional government in Kyushu from the 8th to the 12th centuries. The name may refer to the seat of government which grew into the modern city of Dazaifu in Fukuoka Prefecture; the Dazaifu was established in northwest Kyushu the late 7th century. The town of Dazaifu grew up around the military headquarters of the regional government. During the 8th and 9th centuries, records refer to Dazaifu as "the distant capital". In 1268, envoys bearing letters from Kublai Khan appeared at the Dazaifu court. There were a series of envoys which came before the unsuccessful invasion of 1274. In the Muromachi period the political center of the region was moved to Hakata; the city of Dazaifu was the center of the Shōni clan and the Ōuchi clan. In the Edo period, Dazaifu was a part of Kuroda domain until the han system was abolished in 1873; the flexible term refers to the regional government for all of nearby islands. From the 7th through the 13th century, the governor and vice-governor of Dazaifu had civil and military functions.
The titles of the vice governors were Dazai Dazai shoni. Among the Dazai shoni was Fujiwara no Hirotsugu in 740. Sometimes there was an official Absentee Governor; this title was only given to Imperial princes. Among those holding this office was Takaharu-shinnō who would become Emperor Go-Daigo. Dazaifu is the name of the place where regional government was centered in the late Nara period through the Muromachi period, it is the town. It is the name of the small city which continued to grow after the regional government center was moved. Dazaifu refers to the region which includes all the provinces on the island of Kyūshū and other nearby islands; the Dazaifu is the name of the civil government on the island of Kyūshū. As it grew and developed, a large complex of government offices was built for the use of the hierarchy of bureaucrats; the many buildings were arranged along a symmetrical grid, not far from the Buddhist temple complex at Kanzeon-ji. Dazaifu is a metonym of the official position at the head of the regional government.
It is a metonym for the person who fills this leadership role. Asteroid 19917 Dazaifu named for the Dazaifu government Sugawara no Michizane Adolphson, Mikael S. et al.. Heian Japan and Peripheries. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. ISBN 9780824830137; the Imperial House of Japan. Kyoto: Ponsonby Memorial Society. OCLC 194887 Sansom, George Bailey.. A History of Japan to 1334. Stanford: Stanford University Press. OCLC 256194432 Titsingh, Isaac.. Annales des empereurs du Japon. Paris: Royal Asiatic Society, Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland. OCLC 5850691 Dazaifu City of Ancient Culture