Kofun period (古墳時代,
Kofun jidai) is an era in the history
Japan from around 250 to 538 AD. It follows the
Yayoi period. The
word kofun is Japanese for the type of burial mounds dating from this
Kofun and the subsequent Asuka periods are sometimes referred
to collectively as the Yamato period. The
Kofun period is the earliest
era of recorded history in Japan; as the chronology of its historical
sources tends to be very distorted, studies of this period depend
heavily on archaeology.
Continuing from the preceding
Yayoi period, the
Kofun period is
characterized by a strong influence from the Korean Peninsula, and
archaeologists now think of this period in terms of a shared elite
culture across the southern Korean Peninsula,
Kyushu and Honshu.
Archaeology makes clear that the mound tombs and material culture of
elites were similar across the region, which tends to confirm the
ancient historical documents that trace the origins of the Japanese
royal house to the kingdom of Baekje. 
Politically, this was the period of the earliest political
centralization in Japan, when a powerful clan won control over much of
Honshū and the northern half of
Kyūshū and eventually
established the Imperial House of Japan.
Kofun burial mounds on
Tanegashima and two very old Shinto shrines on
Yakushima suggest that
these islands were the southern boundaries of the Yamato state,
while its northernmost extent was as far north as Tainai in the modern
Niigata Prefecture, where mounds have been excavated associated with a
person with close links to the Yamato kingdom.
2 Yamato court
2.1 Territorial expansion of Yamato
2.3 Clans of the Yamato Court
3.2 Chinese migration
3.3 Korean migration
4.3 Introduction of material culture to Japan
5 Towards Asuka period
6 Relations between the Yamato court and the Korean kingdoms
6.1 Chinese records
6.2 Korean records
6.3 Japanese records
7.1 Restricted access to Gosashi tomb
8 See also
Main article: Kofun
Daisenryō Kofun, Sakai, Osaka, 5th century.
An example of keyhole-shaped kofun which was drawn in 3DCG.
Kofun (Fujiidera, Osaka), 5th century)
Kofun period jewelry. British Museum.
Kofun (from Middle Chinese kú 古 "ancient" + bjun
墳 "burial mound") are defined as the burial mounds built for the
people of the ruling class during the 3rd to 7th centuries in
Japan, and the
Kofun period takes its name from these distinctive
earthen mounds. The mounds contained large stone burial chambers. Some
are surrounded by moats.
Kofun come in many shapes, with round and square being the most
common. A distinct style is the keyhole-shaped kofun, with its square
front and round back.
Kofun range in size from several meters to over
400 meters in length and unglazed pottery figures called
often buried under the circumference of the kofun.
Iron helmet and armour with gilt bronze decoration,
Kofun period, 5th
century. Tokyo National Museum.
The oldest Japanese kofun is said to be Hokenoyama
Kofun located in
Sakurai, Nara, which dates to the late 3rd century. In the Makimuku
district of Sakurai, later keyhole kofuns (Hashihaka Kofun, Shibuya
Mukaiyama Kofun) were built around the early 4th century. The trend of
the keyhole kofun first spread from Yamato to Kawachi (where gigantic
kofun such as Daisenryō
Kofun exist), and then throughout the country
(except for Tōhoku region) in the 5th century. Keyhole kofun
disappeared later in the 6th century, probably because of the drastic
reformation which took place in the Yamato court;
Nihon Shoki records
the introduction of
Buddhism at this time. The last two great kofun
are the Imashirozuka kofun (length: 190m) of Osaka, which is believed
by current scholars to be the tomb of Emperor Keitai, and the
Iwatoyama kofun (length: 135m) of Fukuoka which was recorded in Fudoki
of Chikugo to be the tomb of Iwai, the political archrival of Keitai.
Due to the controversy over
Yamataikoku the actual start of Yamato
rule is disputed. However, it is usually believed to
have been created around 250 CE. Regardless, it is generally agreed
that Yamato rulers possessed keyhole kofun culture and held hegemony
in Yamato up to the 4th century. The regional autonomy of local powers
remained throughout the period, particularly in places such as Kibi
(current Okayama Prefecture), Izumo (current Shimane Prefecture),
Koshi (current Fukui and Niigata Prefecture), Kenu (northern Kantō),
Chikushi (northern Kyūshū), and Hi (central Kyūshū); it was only
in the 6th century that the Yamato clans began to assert dominance
over the entire southern half of Japan. Yamato's relationships with
China are likely to have begun in the late 4th century, according to
the Book of Song.
The Yamato polity, which emerged by the late 5th century, was
distinguished by powerful clans (豪族: Gōzoku). Each clan was
headed by a patriarch (氏上: Uji-no-kami) who performed sacred rites
to the clan's kami to ensure the long-term welfare of the clan. Clan
members were the aristocracy, and the kingly line that controlled the
Yamato court was at its pinnacle. Powerful clan leaders were awarded
kabane, a title that denoted a political rank. This title was
inherited, and used instead of the family name.
Kofun period of Japanese culture is also sometimes called the
Yamato period by some Western scholars, since this local chieftainship
rose to become the Imperial dynasty at the end of the
Yamato and its dynasty however were just one rival polity among others
Kofun era. Japanese archaeologists emphasise instead
the fact that, in the first half of the
Kofun period, other regional
chieftainships, such as Kibi were in close contention for dominance or
importance. The Tsukuriyama
Kofun of Kibi is the fourth largest kofun
Gilded sword hilt pommels,
Kofun period, 6th century, Japan
The Yamato court ultimately exercised power over clans in
Honshū, bestowing titles, some hereditary, on clan chieftains. The
Yamato name became synonymous with all of
Japan as the Yamato rulers
suppressed the clans and acquired agricultural lands. Based on Chinese
models (including the adoption of the Chinese written language), they
started to develop a central administration and an imperial court
attended by subordinate clan chieftains but with no permanent capital.
The famous powerful clans were the Soga, Katsuragi, Heguri, Koze clans
in the Yamato and Bizen Province, and the Kibi clans in the Izumo
Province. The Ōtomo and Mononobe clans were the military leaders, and
the Nakatomi and Inbe clans handled rituals. The
Soga clan provided
the highest minister in the government, while the Ōtomo and Mononobe
clans provided the second highest ministers. The heads of provinces
were called Kuni-no-miyatsuko. The crafts were organized into guilds.
Territorial expansion of Yamato
Reconstitution of a
Kofun Era warehouse.
In addition to archaeological findings indicating a local monarchy in
Kibi Province as an important rival, the legend of the 4th century
Yamato Takeru alludes to the borders of the Yamato and
battlegrounds in the area. A frontier was obviously somewhere close to
Izumo Province (the eastern part of today's Shimane
Prefecture). Another frontier, in Kyūshū, was apparently somewhere
north of today's Kumamoto Prefecture. The legend specifically states
that there was an eastern land in
Honshū "whose people disobeyed the
imperial court", against whom
Yamato Takeru was sent to fight. It's
not clear whether the rivalling country was located rather close to
the Yamato nucleus area itself, or relatively far away. The modern-day
Kai Province is mentioned as one of the locations where prince Yamato
Takeru sojourned in his said military expedition.
The northern frontier of this age was also explained in
Kojiki as the
legend of Shido Shogun's (四道将軍: Shoguns to four ways)
expedition. Out of four shoguns, Ōbiko set northward to Koshi and his
son Take Nunakawawake set to eastern states. The father moved east
from northern Koshi while the son moved north on his way, and they
finally met at Aizu (current western Fukushima). Although the legend
itself is not likely to be a historical fact, Aizu is rather close to
southern Tōhoku, where the north end of keyhole kofun culture as of
the late 4th century is located.
A late kofun, earthen covering gone. (Ishibutai kofun in Nara)
Kofun period, a highly aristocratic society with
militaristic rulers developed.
Kofun period was a critical stage in Japan's evolution toward a
more cohesive and recognized state. This society was most developed in
Kinai region and the easternmost part of the Inland Sea. Japan's
rulers of the time even petitioned the Chinese court for confirmation
of royal titles.
While the rulers' titles are diplomatically King, they locally titled
themselves as Ōkimi (Great King) during this period. Inscriptions in
Inariyama Sword and
Eta Funayama Sword had records of
Amenoshita Shiroshimesu (治天下; "ruling of Heaven and Earth") and
Ōkimi (大王) in common, to be a ruler that the bearers of these
swords were subjected to. It reveals that rulers of this age also
grasped religious authorities to justify their thrones through
heavenly dignities. The title of Amenoshita Shiroshimesu Ōkimi was
used up to the 7th century, until being replaced by Tennō.
Clans of the Yamato Court
Many of the clans and local chieftains that made up the Yamato polity
claimed descent from the imperial family or other tribal Gods. The
archeological evidence for such clans is found in the Inariyama sword,
on which the bearer recorded the names of his ancestors to claim its
origin to Ōbiko (大彦) who was recorded in
Nihon Shoki as a son of
Emperor Kōgen. On the other hand, there are also a number of clans
claiming origins in
China or the Korean peninsula.
In the 5th century, the
Katsuragi clan (葛城氏), descending from
the legendary grandson of Emperor Kōgen, was the most prominent power
in the court and intermarried with the imperial family. After
Katsuragi declined in the late 5th century, the Ōtomo clan
temporarily took its place. When Emperor Buretsu died with no apparent
heir, it was
Ōtomo no Kanamura
Ōtomo no Kanamura who recommended Emperor Keitai, a very
distant imperial relative who resided in Koshi Province, as the new
monarch. However, Kanamura resigned due to the failure of his
diplomatic policies, and the court was eventually controlled by the
Mononobe and Soga clans at the beginning of the Asuka period.
Detail of horse chariots on a Chinese bronze mirror sent to Japan
Kofun period (5th-6th century). Eta-Funayama Tumulus,
Kumamoto. Tokyo National Museum.
Toraijin refers to people who came to
Japan from abroad, but it also
refers to mainland Chinese who became inhabitants of ancient
Ryukyu Islands or from the Korean Peninsula. They introduced many
Chinese culture to Japan. Valuing their knowledge and
culture, the Yamato government gave preferential treatment to
Toraijin. Elements of
Chinese culture introduced to the Yamato
Imperial Court were significant. According to the book Shinsen
Shōjiroku compiled in 815, a total 154 out of 1,182 clans in the
Kinai area on
Honshū were regarded as people with foreign ancestry.
The book specifically mentions 163 were from China, 104 such families
Baekje (Paekche in the older romanization), 41 from Goguryeo, 6
from Silla, and 3 from Gaya. They may have been families that
Japan between the years A.D. 356-645.
Many important figures were also immigrants from China. Chinese
immigrants also had considerable influence according to the Shinsen
Shōjiroku, which was used as a directory of aristocrats. Yamato
Imperial Court had officially edited the directory in 815, and 163
Chinese clans were registered.
According to Nihon Shoki, the Hata clan, which was composed of
descendants of Qin Shi Huang, arrived at Yamato in 403 (the
fourteenth year of Ōjin) leading the people of 120 provinces.
According to the Shinsen Shōjiroku, the Hata clan were dispersed in
various provinces during the reign of
Emperor Nintoku and were made to
undertake sericulture and the manufacturing of silk for the court.
When the finance ministry was set up in Yamato Court, Hata no
Otsuchichi became Tomo no miyatsuko (ja) (the chief of various
departments of the Yamato Court) and was appointed Okura no jo
(Ministry of the Treasury), and the heads of family seem to have
served as financial officials of the Yamato Court.
In 409 (the twentieth year of Ōjin),
Achi no omi (阿知使主), the
ancestor of the Yamato-Aya clan (ja), which was also composed of
Chinese immigrants, arrived with people from 17 districts. According
to the Shinsen Shōjiroku, Achi obtained the permission to establish
the Province of Imaki. The Kawachi-no-Fumi clan, descendants of Gaozu
of Han, introduced aspects of Chinese writing to the Yamato court.
The Takamuko clan[ja] is a descendant of Cao Cao. Takamuko no Kuromaro
was a center member of Taika Reform.
Among the many Korean immigrants who settled in
Japan beginning in the
4th century, some came to be the progenitors of Japanese clans.
Kojiki and Nihon Shoki, the oldest record of a Silla
immigrant is Amenohiboko, a legendary prince of
Silla who settled in
Japan at the era of Emperor Suinin, perhaps around the 3rd or 4th
Silla sent their princes as hostages to the Yamato court in
exchange for military support. For example, King
Baekje was born in
Kyushu (筑紫) of
Japan as a child of
hostage in 462, and left a son in
Japan who settled there and
became an ancestor of the Yamato no Fubito (和史, "Scribes of
Yamato") clan of minor nobility. According to the Shoku Nihongi
(続日本紀), Takano no Niigasa, background of the naturalized
clansmen Yamato no Fumito (和史), was a 10th-generation descendant
of King Muryeong of
Baekje who was chosen as a concubine for Emperor
Kōnin and subsequently became the mother of Emperor Kanmu.
Main article: Japanese language
Chinese, Korean and Japanese wrote accounts of history mostly in
Chinese characters, making original pronunciations difficult to trace.
While writing was largely unknown to the indigenous Japanese of this
period, the literary skills of foreigners seem to have become
increasingly appreciated by the Japanese elite in many regions. The
Inariyama Sword, tentatively dated 471 or 531, contains
Chinese-character inscriptions in styles used in
China at the
Haniwa soldier in keiko armor (National Treasure)
Haniwa horse statuette
The cavalry wore armour, carried swords and other weapons, and used
advanced military methods like those of northeast Asia. Evidence of
these advances is seen in haniwa (埴輪, "clay ring"), the clay
offerings placed in a ring on and around the tomb mounds of the ruling
elite. The most important of these haniwa were found in southern
Kinai region around Nara Prefecture—and
Haniwa grave offerings were made in numerous forms,
such as horses, chickens, birds, fans, fish, houses, weapons, shields,
sunshades, pillows, and male and female humans. Another funerary
piece, the magatama (勾玉, "curved jewel"), became one of the
symbols of the power of the imperial house.
Introduction of material culture to Japan
Much of the material culture of the
Kofun period demonstrates that
Japan at this time was in close political and economic contact with
continental Asia, especially with the southern dynasties of China, via
the countries of the Korean peninsula. Indeed, bronze mirrors cast
from the same mould have been found on both sides of the Tsushima
Strait. Irrigation, sericulture, and weaving were also brought to
Japan by Chinese immigrants who are mentioned in the ancient Japanese
histories. For instance, the Hata clan of Chinese origin (秦, read
"Qín" in Chinese) introduced sericulture and certain kinds of
Towards Asuka period
Kofun period gave way to the
Asuka period in the mid-6th century
AD with the introduction of Buddhism. The religion was officially
introduced the year 538, and this year is traditionally taken as the
start of the new period. The
Asuka period also coincided with the
China under the
Sui dynasty later in this century.
Japan became deeply influenced by Chinese culture, adding a broader
cultural context to the religious distinction between the
Relations between the Yamato court and the Korean kingdoms
According to the Book of Sui,
Baekje greatly valued
relations with Wa of the
Kofun period, and the Korean kingdoms made
diplomatic efforts to maintain their good standing with the
According to the Book of Song, a Chinese emperor appointed five kings
of Wa to Supervisor of All Military Affairs of the Six Countries of
Wa, Silla, Imna, Gara, Jinhan, and Mahan in 451
According to the Gwanggaeto Stele,
Baekje were client states
of Japan. However Korea claims that part of the stele can be
translated in 4 different ways depending on how you fill in the
missing characters and where you punctuate the sentence. Chinese
Academy of Social Sciences investigated this epitaph and reported that
it was written as "
Baekje were client states of Japan".
According to the Portraits of Periodical Offering,
Silla was a
tributary of the Japan, could not be tribute to
China until AD
According to the
Samguk Sagi (Chronicles of the Three Kingdoms),
Silla sent their princes as hostages to the Yamato court in
exchange for military support to continue their already-begun military
campaigns; King Asin of
Baekje sent his son Jeonji in 397 and King
Silla sent his son Misaheun in 402.
Japan helped the founding of Silla.
According to the Nihon Shoki,
Silla was conquered by the Japanese
Empress-consort Jingū in the third century. According to Nihon
Shoki, the prince of
Silla came to
Japan to serve the Japanese
Emperor, and he lived in Tajima Province. He was called
Amenohiboko. His descendant is Tajima mori. According to Kojiki
 and Nihon Shoki, during Emperor Ōjin's reign, Geunchogo of
Baekje presented stallions and broodmares with horse trainers to the
See also: History of Japan–Korea relations
This section may need to be rewritten entirely to comply with
Wikipedia's quality standards. You can help. The discussion page may
contain suggestions. (March 2017)
Japan and South Korea have revisited previous interpretations of the
history of this period, voiding many erroneous quotes and
interpretations after several studies over the past decade. The first
joint history project between
Japan and South Korea was halted in 2005
due to disagreements between the two countries, but later
The archaeological record, and ancient Chinese sources, indicate that
the various tribes and chiefdoms of
Japan did not begin to coalesce
into states until 300 AD, when large tombs began to appear. Some
describe the "mysterious century" as a time of internecine warfare as
various chiefdoms competed for hegemony on
Kyūshū and Honshū.
Even more complicating is the
Nihon Shoki referencing the Japanese
king who is Korean rulers sovereign. Due to this
conflicting information, nothing can be concluded for the book of Song
or Nihon Shoki.
According to the history records in
Japan (Nihon Shoki) and Korea
(Samguk Sagi), Korean princes were sent to
Japan as hostages. Due
to the confusion on the exact nature of this relationship of whether
Japanese is the founder of Silla or hostages and the fact that the
Nihon Shoki is a compilation of myths make it difficult to evaluate.
Japan the hostage interpretation is dominant. Other
historians[who?] like the ones who collaborated in the works for
"Paekche of Korea and the origin of Yamato Japan" and Jonathan W. Best
who helped translate what was left of the Baekjae annals have
Silla King served as horse keeper for the Japanese Emperor
and were the vanguard of the Japanese Navy during the war with
Koguryeo as evidence of them being diplomats with some kind of
familial tie to the Japanese imperial family and not hostages. In
addition, the translation of these documents are difficult because in
the past the term "Wa" was derogatory meaning "midget pirate" or
"dwarf pirate" in Chinese. It is difficult to assess what is truly
being stated; this could have been a derogatory statement between 2
Part of the reason the Joint history project finds these Japanese
views questionable: There is no evidence of
Japan ever having been
sophisticated enough to control any part of Korea during the time of
Jingū. However, there is archaeological evidence of Koreans
Japan during this time, According to the book "Korea and
Japan in East Asian History", and "Paekche of Korea and the Origin
of Yamato Japan" such findings as horse sculptures, Shinju-kyo,
painting and iron-ware made in
China which do not match
the dates of Emperor Ojin's reign. The question that always comes
up within the Korean community is, 'Why would a Japanese culture that
doesn't have Korean ceramic ability or horses yet have horse
sculptures in their tombs?'. Also significant is Emperor Ōjin's reign
is off by more than a century with Geunchogo of Baekje. In other
words, these people did not exist in the same time period.
According to the book Paekchae of Korea and the origin of Yamato
Japan, "The prince of
Silla was the ancestor to the Japanese Emperor."
The translation of "
Nihon Shoki Vol.6" was added and
Nihon Shoki as a maternal predecessor of Empress
Jingū, whose controversial legend says that she
Silla in the 5th Century. This is highly inconsistent, as
Jingū is said to have lived in the 2nd and 3rd centuries, and she is
supposed to have died in 269 AD which would make her 300 to 400 years
old. This conflicting information makes it difficult to understand
"天日槍對曰 僕新羅國主之子也 然聞日本國有聖皇 則以己國授弟知古而化歸之"
Amehiboko was said to have stated 2 possible translations depending on
how you punctuate the sentence and how you evaluate the syntax. 1. "I
am a prince in Korea. I heard that there was saint's king in Japan. To
become a vassal of the king in Japan, I transferred the country to
younger brother." Again in the past the original text and not modern
Japanese or Korean translations, lacking past tense/present tense and
words like transferring or transferred or transfer would be impossible
to interpret. This same sentence can be 2. "I am a prince in Korea. I
heard that there was a saint's King in
Japan to become a vassal. The
Japan I transfer the country to my younger brother." It is
impossible to tell whether the sentence is stating that a Korean
prince loves his younger brother, calling him a saint and ordaining
his younger brother to be his vassal (and to rule as the King of
Japan), or simply the other way around.
According to the Book of Song, a Chinese emperor appointed five kings
of Wa to the position of ruler of
Silla in 421, but what is
confusing is that
Japan wielded influence over the southern part of
the Korean peninsula through the remote region according to the Nihon
Shoki. In addition, the book of Song and the book of Sui can not
be possible because many of the states considered to be Japan's vassal
Chinhan and Mahan did not exist in the same time period as the
vassal king of Yamato. In addition, the
Book of Song was incomplete
with missing volumes and filled in centuries later in a biased manner
for political reasons. Also,
Silla did not have official contact
with the Song/Sui until the 6th century making this 4th to 5th century
statement impossible. "As Egami (1964) notes, it may look very strange
that the names of six or seven states listed in the self-claimed
titles included Chin-han and Ma-han which had preceded, respectively,
the states of
Silla and Paekche. Perhaps the King of Wa had included
the names of six or seven south Korean states in his title merely to
boast of the extent of his rule. But Wa Kings could not have included
the names of nonexistent states." Other historians[who?] also dispute
Japan's theory, claiming there is no evidence of Japanese rule in Gaya
or any other part of Korea. Another problem with the book of
Song and book of Sui is that many of the volumes of the books were
missing and re-written later in a biased manner. It is difficult to
make any sense of what the relationship was like in the past.
Japan of the
Kofun period was very receptive to the Chinese culture
and Korean culture. Chinese and Korean immigrants played an
important role in introducing elements of both to early Japan.
The special burial customs of the
Goguryeo culture had an important
influence on other cultures in Japan. Decorated tombs and painted
tumuli which date from the fifth century and later found in
generally accepted as Northeast of
China and Northern part of Korean
peninsula exports to Japan. The
Takamatsuzuka Tomb even has
paintings of a woman dressed in distinctive clothes, similar to wall
Goguryeo and Tang-dynasty China. In addition,
Chinese astrology was being introduced during this time.
According to the Book of Song, of the Liu Song dynasty, the Emperor of
China bestowed military sovereignty over Silla, Imna, Gaya, Chinhan,
and Mahan on King Sai of Wa. However, this theory is widely rejected
Japan as there is no evidence of Japanese rule in Gaya or any
other part of Korea. After the death of King Kō of Wa, his
younger brother Bu acceded to the throne; King Bu requested to have
Baekje added to the list of protectorates included in the official
title bestowed upon the King of Wa by mandate of the Emperor of China,
but his title was only renewed as "Supervisor of All Military Affairs
of the Six Countries of Wa, Silla, Imna, Gara, Chinhan, and Mahan,
Great General Who Keeps Peace in the East, King of the Country of
Wa." This entire statement is impossible because
Chinhan and Mahan
did not exist in the same time period as Silla,
Baekje when the vassal
Kings of Yamato were supposed to rule. As Egami wrote in 1964 "But Wa
Kings could not have included the names of nonexistent states." In
Silla did not have official contact with the Song/Sui until
the 6th century making this 4th to 5th century claim not possible. Due
to the lack of evidence, and the confusion of whether the Wa were the
descendants of Koreans, again no certain information is discernible.
Chinese chronicles note that horses were absent from the islands of
Japan; they are first noted in the chronicles during the reign of
Nintoku, most likely imported by Chinese and Korean
immigrants. According to some accounts, the horse was one of
the treasures presented when the king of
Silla surrendered to Empress
Jingū in the Nihon Shoki. Other accounts contend that there is no
evidence of this from Silla, and the king who supposedly surrendered
dates to the 5th century, thus making
Empress Jingū 200 years old.
Nihon Shoki states that the father of
Empress Jingū was Emperor
Kaika's grandchild, and her mother was from the Katuragi clan[ja].
In addition, the
Nihon Shoki states that a Korean from Silla,
Amenohiboko, was an ancestor of Jingū so both the
Nihon Shoki and the
Chinese chronicles relating to
Japan are difficult to interpret. In
addition, there is no evidence of Japanese war with Korea or any
Japanese presence in Korea at this time and the Japanese did
not have actual knowledge about horses until well after this
Restricted access to Gosashi tomb
Japan stopped all foreign archaeologists from studying the
Gosashi tomb, which is supposedly the resting place of Emperor Jingū.
Japan allowed controlled, limited access to foreign
archaeologists, but the international community still has many
unanswered questions. National Geographic News reported that Japan
"the agency has kept access to the tombs restricted, prompting rumors
that officials fear excavation would reveal bloodline links between
the "pure" imperial family and Korea—or that some tombs hold no
royal remains at all."
The Yamato court had ties to the Gaya confederacy, called Mimana in
Japanese. This region of the Korean peninsula has burial mounds
similar to kofun. This has caused scholars to begin examining the
shared relationship between the Yamato and
Baekje during the 3rd and
the 7th centuries AD, including the method of tomb construction. While
a variety of theories exist, most have come to the conclusion that
there was sharing of culture and construction methods both
directions. For example, earrings discovered in
Silla and Kaya
tombs are very similar to Japanese earrings dated to the
"The ultimate source of such elaborate techniques as granulation is
probably the Greek and Etruscan goldsmiths of western Asia and Europe,
whose skills were transmitted to northern
China and later to Korea.
The resemblance of earrings found in
Japan in the
Kofun period (ca.
3rd century—538 A.D.) to those from
Silla and Kaya tombs suggests
that such articles are imported from Korea." Spread of Chinese
civilisation, Han styles of tomb construction were gradually adopted
in all three kingdoms of Korea, mainly from the 4th century
onwards. The tombs in the southern part of Korea and
to have a relationship. However, all the kofun-style tombs
discovered in Korea have been dated as younger than those found in
Japan. Leading Japanese scholars[who?] to insist that those found in
Korea were either built by Japanese immigrants or influenced by
culture brought by them, but the advanced artifacts found in Korean's
huge tombs are Japanese Haniwa, and Japan's tombs are Mongol
people who came from Korea like the pottery, horse sculptures and
Important note regarding these records is
Japan and South Korea had
revisited many of these interpretations in history and came to void
many erroneous quotes and interpretations after a three-year study.
Both countries agreed in a joint
Japan and South Korea history project
that Japan's interpretation of the 4th century was incorrect but the
Japanese government did not agree with the historians of both
countries. "After conducting research for three years since 2002,
scholars of the two countries announced their first report on three
categories - the ancient, medieval, and modern times. At that time,
Seoul demanded that the research institute’s findings be reflected
in the textbooks of the two nations, but
Japan rejected this
Kofun helmet, iron and gilt copper.
Kofun Tankō (Short armor), iron plates sewn with leather.
Kofun Keikō (Hanging armor).
Kofun royal crown
Kuni no miyatsuko
^ Barnes, Gina L. The Archaeology of East Asia: The Rise of
Civilization in China, Korea and
Japan (Oxford: Oxbow books, 2015),
^ Watts, Jonathan. "The emperor's new roots: The
Japanese emperor has
finally laid to rest rumours that he has Korean blood, by admitting
that it is true" The Guardian 28 Dec., 2001
^ Denoon, Donald et al. (2001). Multicultural Japan: Palaeolithic to
Postmodern, p. 107., p. 107, at Google Books
^ "Yamato kingdom traces found in Niigata Pref". Daily Yomiuri Online.
September 17, 2012. Retrieved September 23, 2012.
^ Keally, Charles T. (2009-04-29). "
Kofun Culture". Retrieved
^ Kōzō, Yamamura; John Whitney Hall (1997). The Cambridge history of
Japan. Cambridge University Press. p. 311.
^ a b Saeki (1981)
^ "Nihon no myōji 7000 ketsu seishi ruibetsu taikan Hata uji
日本の苗字7000傑 姓氏類別大観 秦氏". Retrieved
^ "Nihon no myōji 7000 ketsu seishi ruibetsu taikan Takamuko uji
日本の苗字7000傑 姓氏類別大観 高向氏". Retrieved
^ Brown, Delmer M. (1993). The Cambridge History of Japan: Ancient
Japan. Cambridge University Press. p. 141.
ISBN 0-521-22352-0. Faced with this comeback by Koguryo, Paekche
leaders turned to Yamato for military support, even sending its crown
prince to Yamato as a hostage in 397 - just as
Silla had dispatched
princely hostage to Koguryo in 392 when that kingdom was in dire need
of military support.
^ Pratt, Keith (2007). Everlasting Flower: A History of Korea.
Reaktion Books. p. 42. ISBN 1-86189-335-3. We can only
guess, for example, what it felt like for the girls periodically sent
as brides to foreign courts, for the crown prince of Paekche when he
was dispatched to the Yamato court as a hostage in AD 397, or for a
Silla prince who experienced the same fate in 402.
^ The New Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica. 2003.
p. 279. ISBN 0-85229-961-3. Paekche was frequently attacked
by Koguryo during the century, prompting continued requests for
assistance from Yamato; it is recorded that Paekche even sent a crown
prince to Yamato as a hostage on one occasion and the mother of the
king on another. Yet, probably because of internal dissension, Yamato
did not dispatch any troops to the peninsula. Yamato's interest in
Korea was apparently a desire for access to improved continental
technology and resources, especially iron.
^ Henthorn, William E. (1971). A history of Korea. Free Press.
p. 37. In 402,
Silla concluded a peace with the Wa. Prince
Misahun was then sent to
Japan as a hostage. This may have been an act
of revenge by the
Silla monarch, who, as Prince Silsong, had been sent
as hostage to Koguryo by Prince Misahun's father. Despite the peace,
Silla-Wa relations were never friendly, due no doubt in part to the
Nihon Shoki Vol.14 "Chronicle of Emperor Yūryaku"
六月丙戌朔 孕婦果如加須利君言 於Chikuzen Province
各羅嶋産兒 仍名此兒曰嶋君 於是 軍君即以一船 送嶋君於國 是爲King
Baekje (武寧王) 百濟人呼此嶋曰主嶋也
^ Seeley (2000:19-23)
^ 国語大辞典 (Kokugo Dai Jiten Dictionary) (in Japanese)
(新装版 (Revised Edition) ed.), Tokyo: Shogakukan, 1988,
Surname. Influential immigrant clan in ancient times. Various theories
about origins, but most likely descendants of Chinese immigrants who
Japan in the fifth century, who are thought to have brought
sericulture and weaving technologies and served in the imperial court,
and to have been granted the title Hata no Miyatsuko as members of the
Tomo no Miyatsuko [an imperial rank responsible for overseeing
technically skilled artisans].
^ Chinese History Record Book of Sui, Vol. 81, Liezhuan 46 :
隋書 東夷伝 第81巻列伝46 :
Baekje both take Wa to be a great country, with many rare
and precious things; also [
Silla and Baekje] respect and look up to
them, and regularly send embassies there." "Archived copy".
Archived from the original on 2004-12-21. Retrieved 2006-04-29.
^ a b Chinese History Record Book of Song : 宋書
列傳第五十七 夷蠻 :
^ 徐建新 (2006-02-07). 好太王碑拓本の研究.
東京堂出版. ISBN 4-490-20569-4.
Portraits of Periodical Offering
Portraits of Periodical Offering 斯羅国 :
^ Korean History Record Samguk Sagi : 三國史記
新羅本紀 : 元年 三月 與倭國通好
^ Korean History Record Samguk Sagi : 三國史記
百済本紀 : 六年夏五月 王與倭國結好
以太子腆支爲質 秋七月大閱於漢水之南 "Archived
copy". Archived from the original on 2008-05-12. Retrieved
^ Korean History Record Samguk Sagi :三國史記 卷第一
新羅本紀第一 始祖赫居世, 瓠公者 未詳其族姓
^ Sakamoto (1967:336-340)
^ Nihon Shoki, Vol.6
"天日槍對曰 僕新羅國主之子也 然聞日本國有聖皇 則以己國授弟知古而化歸(to
^ Nihon Shoki, Vol.6
"故天日槍娶但馬出嶋人 太耳女麻多烏 生但馬諸助也 諸助生但馬日楢杵 日楢杵生清彦 清彦生田道間守也"
^ 十五年秋八月 壬戌朔丁卯 百濟王遣阿直岐
貢良馬二匹 即養於輕阪上廄 因以阿直岐令掌飼
^ Kurano (1958:248-249)
^ a b "S.K.-
Japan joint history project to be revived :
International : Home". English.hani.co.kr. 2007-04-26. Retrieved
^ a b "
Japan office never existed in 4th century-INSIDE Korea JoongAng
Daily". Koreajoongangdaily.joinsmsn.com. 2010-03-24. Archived from the
original on 2013-01-03. Retrieved 2014-03-12.
^ Farris (1998:7)
^ a b Coval, Dr John Carter and Alan, 1984, "Korean impact on Japanese
culture: Japan's hidden History" Hollym International Corp.,
Elizabeth, New Jersey
^ a b c d Hong, Wontack (1994). Paekche of Korea and the Origin of
Yamato Japan. Seoul: Kudara International.
ISBN 978-89-85567-02-2. Archived from the original on
Nihon Shoki Vol.6
Silla bongi Vol1
(三國史記 卷第一 新羅本紀第一 脱解尼師今)
^ Best JW 2007 A History of the Early Korean Kingdom of Paekche,
together with an annotated translation of The Paekche Annals of the
Samguk sagi (Harvard East Asian Monographs) Massachusetts, Harvard
University, Asia studies
^ Nihon shoki Vol.9
^ a b c d e Kōzō (1997:308–310)
^ Kenneth B. Lee (1997). "4. Korea and Early Japan, 200 B.C. – 700
A.D.". Korea and East Asia: The Story of a Phoenix. Greenwood
Publishing Group. pp. 31 ~ 35p. ISBN 0-275-95823-X.
^ "Hong Wontack 2005, KOREA AND JAPAN IN EAST ASIAN HISTORY Seoul,
^ "Peakche of Korea and the Origin of Yamato Japan" (PDF). Retrieved
^ Tenri University : Harness of the ancient Fujinoki burial mound
exhumation (藤ノ木古墳出土の馬具 -
"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-06-12. Retrieved
^ Book of Song
Nihon Shoki Vol.19 Emperor Kimmei April, 2
^ a b c d Lee (1997:31-35)
^ Imamura (1996)
^ Stearns (2001:56)
^ "Complex of Koguryo Tombs". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Retrieved
^ "Complex of Koguryo Tombs". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Retrieved
2006-05-31. "totalling about 30 individual graves, from the
later period of the Koguryo Kingdom, one of the strongest kingdoms in
China and half of the Korean peninsula between the 3rd
century BC and 7th century AD."
^ Farris (1998:95)
^ MSN Encarta "Archived copy". Archived from the original on
2009-11-01. Retrieved 2009-11-01. . 2009-10-31.
^ Sakamoto (1967:338-339)
Nihon Shoki Vol.9 "
Empress Jingū (気長足姫尊). Emperor Kaika
^ a b "Japanese Royal Tomb Opened to Scholars for First Time".
News.nationalgeographic.com. 2010-10-28. Retrieved 2014-03-12.
^ a b Yoshii, Hideo. "Keyhole-shaped tombs in Korean Peninsula" (PDF).
^ "Korea, 1-500 A.D. in Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History".
Metropolitan Museum of Art. 2000. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
^ Richard Rutt, James Hoare. Korea: a historical and cultural
dictionary (474 page). Routledge. ISBN 978-0-7007-0464-4.
The Hankyoreh 2001.9.6 (in korean) "일본식 닮은 영산강가
Yeongsan River (영산강) kofuns were made in 5th
and 6th centuries are similar to the Japanese style Kofun
^ Pottery - MSN Encarta. Archived from the original on
2009-10-31. ""made by a
Mongol people who came from Korea to
Kyūshū, has been found throughout Japan.""
Choson Sinbo "Kitora Tomb Originates in Koguryo Murals" By Chon Ho
Chon "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-02-26.
^  Archived February 26, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
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2002-06-09. Retrieved 2014-03-12.
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Archived from the original on 2009-09-19. Retrieved 2014-03-12.
^ The Arts of Japan: Late medieval to modern - 清六ˇ野間 - Google
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Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kofun.
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This article incorporates public domain material from the
Library of Congress Country Studies website
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Yamato period of Japanese History.
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