The nation of Japan is currently home to over 125 million people, and it’s one of the leading nations in the modern world. Japan’s official name is called “Nippon” or “Nihon.” Japan is an old nation that has been around for thousands of years but it’s official history begins around 660 B.C. that is where it appears on the Biblical timeline chart with world history. This is the era of the emperor Jimmu. The history of Japan is broken down into various historical periods, and the first epoch was called “Jomon” or “Jimmon.” The name was derived from the type of pottery that was common to this particular era in Japan’s history.
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Most historians agree that Japan was settled by people who migrated across the Sea of Japan to the mainland. These migrations continued until 1,500 B.C. During this period the people survived off of the rich ecosystem of Japan. Over the next thousand years the migrations slowed, and the people within Japan organized themselves into clans. The ancient Chinese called Japan “Wa”, and as people from mainland Asia started to settle in Japan, they brought with them the practice of rice farming. Once rice cultivation became the main part of ancient Japanese society settled cultures began to emerge, and one clan was able to dominate the territory of Japan. The history of Japan is very similar to the history of China in this regard because a centralized clan had emerged to dominate the other independent clans in the region. Also, Japan’s writing system is derived from the Chinese, and they have similar creation myths and divine connection to their emperors.
Emperor Jimmu is considered the first emperor of Japan and Japan’s current emperor is supposedly a direct descendant of this historical figure. According to historical records, Emperor Jimmu and his clan migrated from the land of Takachiho and settled into Japan around 665 B.C. They chose the best location on the mainland of Japan to settle their family and clansmen. Jimmu and his brothers had selected a centralized area that would allow them to rule easily over the rest of the island.
As they moved eastward across the land they encountered other clans and were defeated in a battle against them and one of Jimmu’s brothers named Itsuse was killed in the fray. Jimmu realized that his clan lost the battle because they were fighting eastward against the sun, and they repositioned themselves to fight westward. Once they changed their direction and fought with the path of the sun, they defeated their enemies. After this battle had taken place, Jimmu was able to become the first emperor. Many Japanese people believe that the emperor descended from a Japanese sun god named Amaterasu. Emperor Jimmu’s clan became known as the Yamato or Kojiki.
Whether or not this particular story is true is very important because it reveals the connection that the Japanese people have with their ruling emperors. The emperor and the people are supposed to have descended from deities, and this is one of the main reasons why the Japanese people have such a strong bond with their emperor.
Rice farming and fishing were the primary means of economic activity in ancient Japan. They also conducted trade between the clans and with the other kingdoms that resided on the western side of the Sea of Japan. The Emperor set up the first administrative system that was used to govern the land for many years. Shinto was practiced as the primary religious belief system, and so was Buddhism. By 600 B.C. Japan was a powerful Asian state. Emperor Jimmu’s foundation story to Japanese history is considered an important part of the nation’s heritage and cultural development that remains a strong part of modern Japanese society.
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