Himiko and Japan's Elusive Chiefdom of Yamatai
Publication Year: 2007
Published by: University of Hawai'i Press
Download PDF (40.5 KB)
Illustrations and Tables
Download PDF (43.6 KB)
Download PDF (34.4 KB)
Whether the faculty and graduate students in the Department of Archaeology of Kyoto University realized it or not, my year as a Fulbright scholar in that department in 1952–1953 made me a convert to the Kyoto position—if I was not fully persuaded before. ...
Download PDF (49.7 KB)
Chinese historians, in meeting their obligations to document the activities of their dynasties or the debt they believed they owed to their predecessors, collected and eventually recorded information on their neighbors. This material became a store of useful data for managing political relations, trading guides, and military strategy. ...
Chapter 1 Ancient Texts and Sources
Download PDF (70.3 KB)
As already mentioned, Chinese historians dealt with early Japan primarily in two works that concern these events: Hou Han shu and in a section of the Sanguo zhi called Wei zhi. The Han history is a collection of records pieced together, chiefly by Pan Ye (398–445), and first printed between 994 and 1004.1 ...
Chapter 2 The Wei Zhi and the Wa People
Download PDF (2.7 MB)
Much discussion regarding the origin and meaning of the term “Wa”1 cannot evade the Chinese intention: it identified little people or dwarfs, and from the Chinese vantage point in north China doubtless had some implications for the relative stature of the people to China’s south and east. ...
Chapter 3 The Initial Problem and Three Centuries of Compounding It
Download PDF (177.9 KB)
The Chinese historian described the location of Yamatai as beyond the koku of Toma to the south another ten days by water, one month by land, but if a naive traveler were to follow these directions going south—as we know the geography today—he may well have found himself floating aimlessly in the middle of the ocean. ...
Chapter 4 Travel by Land and Water to Neighboring Countries
Download PDF (294.9 KB)
Even a quick glance at the Chinese record gives the impression of sophisticated politicians surrounding Himiko. The Wa behaved in a statesman-like manner, exchanged envoys with China, and presented gifts of notable variety and quality.On the other hand, if one takes the Japanese texts literally, ...
Chapter 5 Han Commanderies, Korean Kingdoms, and Wei China
Download PDF (144.8 KB)
Himiko would not be known if the Chinese had not had their historians and if the Wei had not been successful in putting down rebellions in north Korea and requiring all subdued people to show their respect and pay tribute. Those who were one step removed, like the Japanese Wa, were sufficiently intimidated ...
Chapter 6 Japan in Transition from Yayoi to Kofun
Download PDF (2.0 MB)
Since Himiko was dead before AD 250 and Nara archaeologists are pushing the earliest mounded tombs back several decades, as will be discussed later, the first major evidence of a center of authority with the power to build large tumuli occurs in the first half of the third century. Social grading, a feature initiated by Yayoi immigrants ...
Chapter 7 The Izumo-Yamato Contention
Download PDF (300.9 KB)
The obsession Yamato had with Izumo, as described by the writers of the Nihon shoki, was a mystery until the discovery of the 358 Kanba-k
Chapter 8 Himiko, Shamans, Divination, and Other Magic
Download PDF (747.5 KB)
The roster of magic practitioners, pre-Buddhist magicians and diviners—using the term “magic” (majinai) in the general sense of trying to achieve a natural occurrence through nonnatural means that includes through the medium of occult forces in nature—is led by the diviners, geomancers, and soothsayers, formally known as urabe. ...
Chapter 9 Mirrors and Himiko's Allotment
Download PDF (956.8 KB)
Before looking at mirrors normally associated with Himiko, it is worth noting that small bronze mirrors were already being cast in Japan well before her time. These have been found as far north, south, east, and west as Gumma, Kumamoto, Chiba, and Ishikawa prefectures. Takakura estimates that about two hundred are known today.1 ...
Chapter 10 The Japanese View of the Wei Zhi Years
Download PDF (353.9 KB)
Many of the stories in the Kojiki and Nihon shoki are obviously space fillers that could be used at any time, but the style of storytelling and the content reveal the inner workings of a culture the Chinese knew only through a female ruler. It is as though the Chinese looked at the face of an old pocket watch and saw the hands go round, ...
Chapter 11 The Endless Search for Yamatai
Download PDF (78.7 KB)
The relatively successful efforts before World War II to move Yamatai and Himiko out of the mainstream of Japanese history have been sketched, but there remained those who believed that the description of Yamatai applied to the Yamato area and that the directions and distances did not prove otherwise. ...
Chapter 12 Makimuku and the Location of Yamatai
Download PDF (1.9 MB)
Early in his reign Emperor Sujin is said to have taken up residence in a palace called Mizugaki in Shiki.This is today’s Kanaya in Sakurai city in Nara prefecture, an area southwest of Mt. Miwa. Hikers would know Kanaya as the first little community the Yamanobe hiking course goes through when the route is entered ...
List of Abbreviations
Download PDF (34.6 KB)
Download PDF (241.9 KB)
Wei Zhi Text
Download PDF (1.4 MB)
Download PDF (655.5 KB)
Download PDF (169.6 KB)
Download PDF (73.4 KB)
Publication Year: 2007