The Heian period is the last division of classical Japanese history, running from 794 to 1185. The period is named after modern Kyōto, it is the period in Japanese history when Buddhism and other Chinese influences were at their height. The Heian period is considered the peak of the Japanese imperial court and noted for its art poetry and literature. Although the Imperial House of Japan had power on the surface, the real power was in the hands of the Fujiwara clan, a powerful aristocratic family who had intermarried with the imperial family. Many emperors had mothers from the Fujiwara family. Heian means "peace" in Japanese; the Heian period was preceded by the Nara period and began in 794 CE after the movement of the capital of Japan to Heian-kyō, by the 50th emperor, Emperor Kanmu Kanmu first tried to move the capital to Nagaoka-kyō, but a series of disasters befell the city, prompting the emperor to relocate the capital a second time, to Heian. A rebellion occurred in China in the last years of the 9th century, making the political situation unstable.
The Japanese missions to Tang China was suspended and the influx of Chinese exports halted, a fact which facilitated the independent growth of Japanese culture called kokufu bunka. Therefore, the Heian Period is considered a high point in Japanese culture that generations have always admired; the period is noted for the rise of the samurai class, which would take power and start the feudal period of Japan. Nominally, sovereignty lay in the emperor but in fact, power was wielded by the Fujiwara nobility. However, to protect their interests in the provinces, the Fujiwara, other noble families required guards and soldiers; the warrior class made steady political gains throughout the Heian period. As early as 939 CE, Taira no Masakado threatened the authority of the central government, leading an uprising in the eastern province of Hitachi, simultaneously, Fujiwara no Sumitomo rebelled in the west. Still, a true military takeover of the Japanese government was centuries away, when much of the strength of the government would lie within the private armies of the shogunate.
The entry of the warrior class into court influence was a result of the Hōgen Rebellion. At this time Taira no Kiyomori revived the Fujiwara practices by placing his grandson on the throne to rule Japan by regency, their clan, the Taira, would not be overthrown until after the Genpei War, which marked the start of the Kamakura shogunate. The Kamakura period began in 1185 when Minamoto no Yoritomo seized power from the emperors and established the shogunate in Kamakura; when Emperor Kanmu moved the capital to Heian-kyō, which remained the imperial capital for the next 1,000 years, he did so not only to strengthen imperial authority but to improve his seat of government geopolitically. Nara was abandoned after only 70 years in part due to the ascendancy of Dōkyō and the encroaching secular power of the Buddhist institutions there. Kyōto had good river access to the sea and could be reached by land routes from the eastern provinces; the early Heian period continued Nara culture. Kanmu endeavored to improve the Tang-style administrative system, in use.
Known as the ritsuryō, this system attempted to recreate the Tang imperium in Japan, despite the "tremendous differences in the levels of development between the two countries". Despite the decline of the Taika–Taihō reforms, imperial government was vigorous during the early Heian period. Kanmu's avoidance of drastic reform decreased the intensity of political struggles, he became recognized as one of Japan's most forceful emperors. Although Kanmu had abandoned universal conscription in 792, he still waged major military offensives to subjugate the Emishi, possible descendants of the displaced Jōmon, living in northern and eastern Japan. After making temporary gains in 794, in 797, Kanmu appointed a new commander, Sakanoue no Tamuramaro, under the title Sei-i Taishōgun. By 801, the shōgun had defeated the Emishi and had extended the imperial domains to the eastern end of Honshū. Imperial control over the provinces was tenuous at best, however. In the ninth and tenth centuries, much authority was lost to the great families, who disregarded the Chinese-style land and tax systems imposed by the government in Kyoto.
Stability came to Japan, but though succession was ensured for the imperial family through heredity, power again concentrated in the hands of one noble family, the Fujiwara which helped Japan develop more. Following Kanmu's death in 806 and a succession struggle among his sons, two new offices were established in an effort to adjust the Taika–Taihō administrative structure. Through the new Emperor's Private Office, the emperor could issue administrative edicts more directly and with more self-assurance than before; the new Metropolitan Police Board replaced the ceremonial imperial guard units. While these two offices strengthened the emperor's position temporarily, soon they and other Chinese-style structures were bypassed in the developing state. In 838 the end of the imperial-sanctioned missions to Tang China, which had begun in 630, marked the effective end of Chinese influence. Tang China was in a state of decline, Chinese Buddhists were persecuted, undermining Japanese respect for Chinese institutions.
Japan began to turn inward. As the Soga clan had taken control of the throne in the sixth century, the Fujiwara by the ninth century had intermarried with the imperial family, one of their members was the first head of the Emperor's Private O
History of Japanese foreign relations
History of Japanese foreign relations deals with the international relations in terms of diplomacy and political affairs from about 1850 to 2000. The kingdom was isolated before the 1850s, with limited contacts through Dutch traders; the Meiji Restoration was a political revolution that installed a new leadership, eager to borrow Western technology and organization. The government in Tokyo monitored and controlled outside interactions. Japanese delegations to Europe brought back European standards which were imposed across the government and the economy. Trade flourished, as Japan industrialized. European-style imperialism and colonialism were borrowed, as in the late 19th century Japan defeated China, acquired numerous colonies, including Formosa and Okinawa; the rapid advanced in Japanese military prowess stunned the world in 1904-1905 when it decisively defeated Russia and gained recognition as a world power. Imperialism continued as it took control of Korea, began moving into Manchuria, its only military alliance was with Great Britain.
1902-1923. In the First World War, it joined the Allies, seized many German possessions in the Pacific and in China. Japan put heavy pressure on China. Although the political system was formally democratic, the Army seized control in Japan. Indeed in the 1930s, separatist Army elements in Manchuria shaped foreign-policy; the League of Nations criticized Japan's takeover of Manchuria in 1931, so it withdrew. It joined the Axis alliance with Germany, But there was little close cooperation between the two nations until 1943. Japan opened a full-scale war in China, in 1937, taking control of the major cities and economic centers with a long record of atrocities. Two puppet regimes were nominally in charge in Manchuria. Military confrontations with the Soviet Union were disappointing to Japan, it turned its attention to the south. American economic and financial pressures, joined by Britain and the Netherlands, climaxed in the cut off of vitally needed oil supplies in 1941. Japan declared war, in three months scored spectacular successes against the United States and the Netherlands, as well as continuing the war with China.
The Japanese economy could not support the large-scale war effort with the rapid buildup of the American navy. By 1944, Japan was on the defensive, as its Greater East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere collapsed, its navy was sunk, American bombing started to devastate major Japanese cities; the final blow came in August 1945 with the Russian invasion. Japan surrendered, was occupied by the Allies, or more by the United States, its political and economic system was rebuilt on the basis of greater democracy, no military capability, a weakening of traditional monopolistic corporations. Japan was a minor player in international affairs in the late 1940s, but its economy revived in part as a supply base for the Korean War. Non-involvement became the central focus of Japanese foreign policy, together with rapid growth of its industrial exports. By the 1990s, with the second largest economy in the world behind the United States, reached a peak, leveled off economically, it retained close relations with the United States, which provided it with military protection.
South Korea and other countries in the Western Pacific traded on a large scale with Japan, but still resented the wartime atrocities. See Military history of Japan Beginning with the Meiji Restoration of 1868, which established a new, centralized regime, Japan set out to "gather wisdom from all over the world" and embarked on an ambitious program of military, social and economic reforms that transformed it within a generation into a modern nation-state and major world power; the Meiji oligarchy was aware of Western progress, "learning missions" were sent abroad to absorb as much of it as possible. The Iwakura Mission, the most important one, was led by Iwakura Tomomi, Kido Takayoshi and Ōkubo Toshimichi, contained forty-eight members in total and spent two years touring the United States and Europe, studying every aspect of modern nations, such as government institutions, prison systems, the import-export business, shipyards, glass plants and other enterprises. Upon returning, mission members called for domestic reforms that would help Japan catch up with the West.
European powers imposed a series of "unequal treaties" in the 1850s and 1860s that gave privileged roles to their nationals in specially designated treaty ports. Representative was the 1858 Treaty with the United States, called the "Harris Treaty." It opened the ports of Kanagawa and four other Japanese cities to trade, And provided for the exchange of diplomats. It granted extraterritoriality to foreigners, So that they govern themselves and were not under the control of Japanese courts or authorities. There were numerous trading stipulations favorable to the Americans; the Dutch and Russians followed suit with their own treaties, backed up by their own powerful naval forces. The unequal treaties were part of the series imposed on non-Western countries, such as Persia 1857, Turkey 1861, Siam 1855, China 1858; the inequality was not quite as severe as suffered by these other countries, but it rankled so much that ending the inequality became a priority, achieved in the 1890s. The humiliation was not as bad as China suffered.
On the other hand, the new treaties, provided for tariffs on imports from Europe.
A shotgun is a firearm, designed to be fired from the shoulder, which uses the energy of a fixed shell to fire a number of small spherical pellets called shot, or a solid projectile called a slug. Shotguns come in a wide variety of sizes, ranging from 5.5 mm bore up to 5 cm bore, in a range of firearm operating mechanisms, including breech loading, single-barreled, double or combination gun, pump-action, bolt-, lever-action, semi-automatic, fully automatic variants. A shotgun was a smoothbore firearm, which means that the inside of the barrel is not rifled but rifled shotgun barrels and slugs become available. Preceding smoothbore firearms, such as the musket, were used by armies in the 18th century; the direct ancestor to the shotgun, the blunderbuss, was used in a similar variety of roles from self-defense to riot control. It was used by cavalry troops because of its shorter length and ease of use, as well as by coachmen for its substantial power. In the 19th century, these weapons were replaced on the battlefield with breechloading rifled firearms, which were more accurate over longer ranges.
The military value of shotguns was rediscovered in the First World War, when American forces used 12-gauge pump action shotguns in close-quarters trench fighting to great effect. Since it has been used in a variety of roles in civilian, law enforcement, military applications; the shot pellets from a shotgun spread upon leaving the barrel, the power of the burning charge is divided among the pellets, which means that the energy of any one ball of shot is low. In a hunting context, this makes shotguns useful for hunting birds and other small game. However, in a military or law enforcement context, the large number of projectiles makes the shotgun useful as a close quarters combat weapon or a defensive weapon. Militants or insurgents may use shotguns in asymmetric engagements, as shotguns are owned civilian weapons in many countries. Shotguns are used for target shooting sports such as skeet and sporting clays; these involve. Shotguns come in a wide variety of forms, from small up to massive punt guns, in nearly every type of firearm operating mechanism.
The common characteristics that make a shotgun unique center on the requirements of firing shot. These features are the features typical of a shotgun shell, namely a short, wide cartridge, with straight walls, operating at a low pressure. Ammunition for shotguns is referred to in the USA as shotshells, or just shells; the term cartridges is standard usage in the United Kingdom. The shot is fired from a smoothbore barrel; the typical use of a shotgun is against small and fast moving targets while in the air. The spreading of the shot allows the user to point the shotgun close to the target, rather than having to aim as in the case of a single projectile; the disadvantages of shot are limited range and limited penetration of the shot, why shotguns are used at short ranges, against smaller targets. Larger shot sizes, up to the extreme case of the single projectile slug load, result in increased penetration, but at the expense of fewer projectiles and lower probability of hitting the target. Aside from the most common use against small, fast moving targets, the shotgun has several advantages when used against still targets.
First, it has enormous stopping power at more than nearly all handguns and many rifles. Though many believe the shotgun is a great firearm for inexperienced shooters, the truth is, at close range, the spread of shot is not large at all, competency in aiming is still required. A typical self-defense load of buckshot contains 8–27 large lead pellets, resulting in many wound tracks in the target. Unlike a jacketed rifle bullet, each pellet of shot is less to penetrate walls and hit bystanders, it is favored by law enforcement for its low penetration and high stopping power. On the other hand, the hit potential of a defensive shotgun is overstated; the typical defensive shot is taken at close ranges, at which the shot charge expands no more than a few centimeters. This means. Balancing this is the fact that shot spreads further upon entering the target, the multiple wound channels of a defensive load are far more to produce a disabling wound than a rifle or handgun; some of the most common uses of shotguns are the sports of skeet shooting, trap shooting, sporting clays.
These involve shooting clay discs known as clay pigeons, thrown in by hand and by machine. Both skeet and trap competitions are featured at the Olympic Games; the shotgun is popular for bird hunting, it is used for more general forms of hunting in semi-populated areas where the range of rifle bullets may pose a hazard. Use of a smooth bore shotgun with a rifled slug or, alternatively, a rifled barrel shotgun with a sabot slug, improves accuracy to 100 m or more; this is well within the range of the majority of kill shots by experienced hunters using shotguns. However, given the low muzzle velocity of slug ammunition around 500 m/s, the blunt, poorly streamlined shape of typical slugs (which cause them to lose
Sakoku was the isolationist foreign policy of the Japanese Tokugawa shogunate under which relations and trade between Japan and other countries were limited, nearly all foreign nationals were barred from entering Japan and common Japanese people were kept from leaving the country for a period of over 220 years. The policy was enacted by the Tokugawa shogunate under Tokugawa Iemitsu through a number of edicts and policies from 1633 to 1639, ended after 1853 when the American Black Ships commanded by Matthew Perry forced the opening of Japan to American trade through a series of unequal treaties, it was preceded by a period of unrestricted trade and widespread piracy when Japanese mariners travelled Asia and official embassies and envoys visited both Asian states, New Spain, Europe. This period was noted for the large number of foreign traders and pirates who were resident in Japan and active in Japanese waters; the term Sakoku originates from the manuscript work Sakoku-ron written by Japanese astronomer and translator Shizuki Tadao in 1801.
Shizuki invented the word while translating the works of the 17th-century German traveller Engelbert Kaempfer concerning Japan. Japan was not isolated under the sakoku policy, it was a system in which strict regulations were applied to commerce and foreign relations by the shogunate and by certain feudal domains. There was extensive trade with China through the port of Nagasaki, in the far west of Japan, with a residential area for the Chinese; the policy stated that the only European influence permitted was the Dutch factory at Dejima in Nagasaki. Western scientific and medical innovations did flow into Japan through Rangaku. Trade with Korea was limited to the Tsushima Domain. Trade with the Ainu people was limited to the Matsumae Domain in Hokkaidō, trade with the Ryūkyū Kingdom took place in Satsuma Domain. Apart from these direct commercial contacts in peripheral provinces, trading countries sent regular missions to the shōgun in Edo and Osaka Castle. Japan traded at this time with five entities, through four "gateways".
The largest was the private Chinese trade at Nagasaki, where the Dutch East India Company was permitted to operate. The Matsumae clan domain in Hokkaidō traded with the Ainu people. Through the Sō clan daimyō of Tsushima, there were relations with Joseon-dynasty Korea. Ryūkyū, a semi-independent kingdom for nearly all of the Edo period, was controlled by the Shimazu clan daimyō of Satsuma Domain. Tashiro Kazui has shown that trade between Japan and these entities was divided into two kinds: Group A in which he places China and the Dutch, "whose relations fell under the direct jurisdiction of the Bakufu at Nagasaki" and Group B, represented by the Korean Kingdom and the Ryūkyū Kingdom, "who dealt with Tsushima and Satsuma domains respectively". Many items traded from Japan to Korea and the Ryūkyū Kingdom were shipped on to China. In the Ryūkyū Islands and Korea, the clans in charge of trade built trading towns outside Japanese territory where commerce took place. Due to the necessity for Japanese subjects to travel to and from these trading posts, this resembled something of an outgoing trade, with Japanese subjects making regular contact with foreign traders in extraterritorial land.
Commerce with Chinese and Dutch traders in Nagasaki took place on an island called Dejima, separated from the city by a narrow strait. Trade in fact prospered during this period, though relations and trade were restricted to certain ports, the country was far from closed. In fact as the shogunate expelled the Portuguese, they engaged in discussions with Dutch and Korean representatives to ensure that the overall volume of trade did not suffer. Thus, it has become common in scholarship in recent decades to refer to the foreign relations policy of the period not as sakoku, implying a secluded, "closed" country, but by the term kaikin used in documents at the time, derived from the similar Chinese concept haijin, it is conventionally regarded that the shogunate imposed and enforced the sakoku policy in order to remove the colonial and religious influence of Spain and Portugal, which were perceived as posing a threat to the stability of the shogunate and to peace in the archipelago. The increasing number of Catholic converts in southern Japan was a significant element of that, seen as a threat.
Based on work conducted by Japanese historians in the 1970s, some scholars have challenged this view, believing it to be only a partial explanation of political reality. The motivations for the gradual strengthening of the maritime prohibitions during the early 17th century should be considered within the context of the Tokugawa bakufu's domestic agenda. One element of this agenda was to acquire sufficient control over Japan's foreign policy so as not only to guarantee social peace, but to maintain Tokugawa supremacy over the other powerful lords in the country the tozama daimyōs; these daimyōs had used East Asian trading linkages to profitable effect during the Sengoku period, which allowed them to build up their military strength as well. By restricting the daimyōs' ability to trade with foreign ships coming to Japan or pursue trade opportunities overseas, the Tokugawa bakufu could ensure none would become powerful enough to
The terms anno Domini and before Christ are used to label or number years in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. The term anno Domini is Medieval Latin and means "in the year of the Lord", but is presented using "our Lord" instead of "the Lord", taken from the full original phrase "anno Domini nostri Jesu Christi", which translates to "in the year of our Lord Jesus Christ"; this calendar era is based on the traditionally reckoned year of the conception or birth of Jesus of Nazareth, with AD counting years from the start of this epoch, BC denoting years before the start of the era. There is no year zero in this scheme, so the year AD 1 follows the year 1 BC; this dating system was devised in 525 by Dionysius Exiguus of Scythia Minor, but was not used until after 800. The Gregorian calendar is the most used calendar in the world today. For decades, it has been the unofficial global standard, adopted in the pragmatic interests of international communication and commercial integration, recognized by international institutions such as the United Nations.
Traditionally, English followed Latin usage by placing the "AD" abbreviation before the year number. However, BC is placed after the year number, which preserves syntactic order; the abbreviation is widely used after the number of a century or millennium, as in "fourth century AD" or "second millennium AD". Because BC is the English abbreviation for Before Christ, it is sometimes incorrectly concluded that AD means After Death, i.e. after the death of Jesus. However, this would mean that the approximate 33 years associated with the life of Jesus would neither be included in the BC nor the AD time scales. Terminology, viewed by some as being more neutral and inclusive of non-Christian people is to call this the Current or Common Era, with the preceding years referred to as Before the Common or Current Era. Astronomical year numbering and ISO 8601 avoid words or abbreviations related to Christianity, but use the same numbers for AD years; the Anno Domini dating system was devised in 525 by Dionysius Exiguus to enumerate the years in his Easter table.
His system was to replace the Diocletian era, used in an old Easter table because he did not wish to continue the memory of a tyrant who persecuted Christians. The last year of the old table, Diocletian 247, was followed by the first year of his table, AD 532; when he devised his table, Julian calendar years were identified by naming the consuls who held office that year—he himself stated that the "present year" was "the consulship of Probus Junior", 525 years "since the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ". Thus Dionysius implied that Jesus' incarnation occurred 525 years earlier, without stating the specific year during which his birth or conception occurred. "However, nowhere in his exposition of his table does Dionysius relate his epoch to any other dating system, whether consulate, year of the world, or regnal year of Augustus. Among the sources of confusion are: In modern times, incarnation is synonymous with the conception, but some ancient writers, such as Bede, considered incarnation to be synonymous with the Nativity.
The civil or consular year began on 1 January but the Diocletian year began on 29 August. There were inaccuracies in the lists of consuls. There were confused summations of emperors' regnal years, it is not known. Two major theories are that Dionysius based his calculation on the Gospel of Luke, which states that Jesus was "about thirty years old" shortly after "the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar", hence subtracted thirty years from that date, or that Dionysius counted back 532 years from the first year of his new table, it has been speculated by Georges Declercq that Dionysius' desire to replace Diocletian years with a calendar based on the incarnation of Christ was intended to prevent people from believing the imminent end of the world. At the time, it was believed by some that the resurrection of the dead and end of the world would occur 500 years after the birth of Jesus; the old Anno Mundi calendar theoretically commenced with the creation of the world based on information in the Old Testament.
It was believed that, based on the Anno Mundi calendar, Jesus was born in the year 5500 with the year 6000 of the Anno Mundi calendar marking the end of the world. Anno Mundi 6000 was thus equated with the resurrection and the end of the world but this date had passed in the time of Dionysius; the Anglo-Saxon historian the Venerable Bede, familiar with the work of Dionysius Exiguus, used Anno Domini dating in his Ecclesiastical History of the English People, completed in 731. In this same history, he used another Latin term, ante vero incarnationis dominicae tempus anno sexagesimo, equivalent to the English "before Christ", to identify years before the first year of this era. Both Dionysius and Bede regarded Anno Domini as beginning at the incarnation of Jesus, but "the distinction between Incarnation and Nativity was not drawn until the late 9th century, when in some places the Incarnation epoch was identified with Christ's conception, i.e. the Annunciation on March 25". On the continent of Europe, Anno
Naval history of Japan
The naval history of Japan can be said to begin in early interactions with states on the Asian continent in the early centuries of the 1st millennium, reaching a pre-modern peak of activity during the 16th century, a time of cultural exchange with European powers and extensive trade with the Asian mainland. After over two centuries of relative seclusion under the Tokugawa shogunate, Japan's naval technologies were seen to be no match for Western navies when the country was forced by American intervention in 1854 to abandon its maritime restrictions; this and other events led to the Meiji Restoration, a period of frantic modernization and industrialization accompanied by the re-ascendence of the Emperor, making the Imperial Japanese Navy the third largest navy in the world by 1920, arguably the most modern at the brink of World War II. The Imperial Japanese Navy's history of successes, sometimes against much more powerful foes as in the 1894–1895 Sino-Japanese War and the 1904–1905 Russo-Japanese War, ended with the navy's complete annihilation in 1945 against the United States Navy, official dissolution at the end of the conflict.
Japan's current navy falls under the umbrella of the Japan Self-Defense Forces as the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. It is still one of the top navies in the world in terms of budget, although it is denied any offensive role by the nation's Constitution and public opinion. Japan seems to have been connected to the Asian landmass during the last Ice Age until around 20,000 BCE, both because of glaciation of sea water and the concomitant lowering of sea level by about 80 to 100 meters; this allowed for the transmission of fauna and flora, including the establishment of the Jōmon culture. After that period however, Japan became an isolated island territory, depending on sporadic naval activity for its interactions with the mainland; the shortest seapath to the mainland involved two stretches of open water about 50 kilometers wide, between the Korean peninsula and the island of Tsushima, from Tsushima to the major island of Kyūshū. Various influences have been suggested from the direction of the Pacific Ocean, as various cultural and genetic traits seem to point to partial Pacific origins in relation with the Austronesian expansion.
Ambassadorial visits to Japan by the Northern Chinese dynasties Wei and Jin recorded that some Japanese people claimed to be descendants of Taibo of Wu, refugees after the fall of the Wu state in the 5th century BCE. History books do have records of Wu Taibo sending 4000 females to Japan; the first major naval contacts occurred in the Yayoi period in the 3rd century BCE, when rice-farming and metallurgy were introduced, from the continent. The 14 AD incursion of Silla, one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea, is the earliest Japanese military action recorded in Samguk Sagi. According to that record, Wa sent one hundred ships and led an incursion on the coastal area of Silla before being driven off. During the Yamato period, Japan had intense naval interaction with the Asian continent centered around diplomacy and trade with China, the Korean kingdoms, other mainland states, since at latest the beginning of the Kofun period in the 3rd century. According to the Kojiki and Nihon Shoki, Empress Jingū is claimed to have invaded Korea in the 3rd century, to have returned victorious after three years.
Whether Japan ruled a part of Korea in ancient times is debated. Other than the expedition of Empress Jingū, battle of Hakusukinoe, one of the earliest historical events in Japan's naval history took place in 663. Japan sent 32,000 troops and as many as 1,000 ships to Korea to support the declining Baekje kingdom against Silla and Tang-dynasty China, they were defeated by the T'ang-Silla combined force. Naval battles of a large scale, fought between Japanese clans and involving more than 1000 warships, are recorded from the 12th century; the decisive battle of the Genpei War, one of the most famous and important naval battles in pre-modern Japanese history, was the 1185 battle of Dan-no-ura, fought between the fleets of the Minamoto and Taira clans. These battles consisted first of long-range archery exchanges giving way to hand-to-hand combat with swords and daggers. Ships were used as floating platforms for what were land-based melee tactics; the first major references to Japanese naval actions against other Asian powers occur in the accounts of the Mongol invasions of Japan by Kublai Khan in 1281.
Japan had no navy which could challenge the Mongol navy, so most of the action took place on Japanese land. Groups of samurai, transported on small coastal boats, are recorded to have boarded, taken over and burned several ships of the Mongol navy. During the following centuries, wakō pirates plundered the coast of the Chinese Empire. Though the term wakō translates directly to "Japanese pirates", Japanese were far from the only sailors to harass shipping and ports in China and other parts of Asia in this period, the term thus more includes non-Japanese pirates as well; the first raid by wakō on record occurred on the south coast of Goryeo. At the peak of wakō activity around the end of the 14th century, fleets of 300 to 500 ships, transporting several hundred horsemen and several thousand soldiers, would raid the coast of China. For the next half-century, sailing principally from Iki Island and Tsushima, they engulfed coastal regions of the southern half of Goryeo. Between 1376 and 1385, no fewer than 174 instances of pirate raids were