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Transcript of Feudal Japan
The feudalism in Japan was basically a fight for more land, more wealth, and more power. When the government became weaker, large landowners had much more power, and fought for each other’s land. The emperor was still at the head of the central government, but was more like a figurehead for Japan. In the 800s, a powerful family of nobles, pretty much became the rulers of Japan. They had all of the power. It was like this for about 300 years. During the 1100s, both the Fujiwara clan and the central government started to fall, due to the fact that the government was running out of money.
The one of two major religions in Japan is Shinto. Shinto relates that there is the goddess of the sun and the ruler of the heaven named Amaterasu, who was believed to be the legendary ancestor of the Imperial Family. The afterlife in old Japanese legends is often said that the dead go to a place called Yomi, an underground realm with a river separating the living from the dead.
Japan is located in the North Pacific off the coast of Russia and the Korean peninsula and Japan is slightly smaller than California. Japan is made up of four main larger islands, which are Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu.
Japan is over 70% of mountainous terrain with about 18% of land mass suitable for human settlement.
Social Class Structure
Tools used in Japan
Weapons: Kanta (sword), and Yumi (bow)
Japanese wood, sulfur, copper ore, swords, and folding fans were traded for Chinese silk, porcelain, books, and coins, in what the Japanese saw as profitable trade.
Taxes were routinely collected. Coins were minted, but weren't used outside of the cities of Japan. Outside the area, however, there was little commercial activity.
Entertainment: Taiko (drum), Koto (12-80 strings on this instrument)
The war was rivalry between Hosokawa Katsumoto, prime minister (1452–64) for the shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa, and Yamana Mochitoyo, whose family were powerful landowners in the western Honshu region. Warfare erupted between the two sides in 1467, because both wanted for more power. The capital ctiy of Japan, Kyoto was severely damaged in the fighting, The war ended in 1477, the Hosokawa won control of the government, but fighting continued for another 100 years.
Shinto began to be overshadowed by Buddhism. Greatly affected by the new religion, Imperial Prince Shotoku (574-622) made Buddhism as a state religion and built many great temples. Since then, many emperors supported Buddhism. Shinto was emancipated from the Buddhism domination by the military dictators. Shintoist claimed that the Shinto gods divinities were not incarnation of the Buddha but that Buddha himself was rather made of the Shinto deities.
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