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The History Of Japan In One Post

The history of Japan is a long and storied one that makes Japanese Culture rich.

It began when the first tribes arrived on the islands, and it continues to this day. The country has gone from ancient times to the modern era and beyond.

The first people to arrive in Japan were known as Jomon, which were hunter-gatherers who lived in small groups. The next group of people to settle in Japan are known as the Yayoi, and they introduced pottery to the island. The Yayoi culture eventually gave way to the Yamato culture and later became the dominant culture in Japan for hundreds of years.

Ancient Japan is a period of Japanese history that goes from around 500 BCE to the beginning of the eighth century CE. The earliest historical records in Japan date to this period, called the “Archaeological Age” by Japanese scholars. The first human habitation in the Japanese archipelago can be traced back to prehistoric times. The Jōmon period, named after its "cord-marked" pottery, was followed by the Yayoi in the first millennium BCE. In 700 BCE, Japan entered its Iron Age stage.

The earliest known human settlements in Japan, which were dated to 10,000 BC, were found in the Matsumoto region. The Jōmon period, named after its "cord-marked" pottery, spanned from 8000 BC to 300 AD. The next era of Japanese history was the Yayoi period (300 BC to 300 AD), when rice farming was introduced and contact with China became intense.

The Yamato rulers, who were said to be descendants of the sun goddess Amaterasu, established an imperial court in 594 AD. Buddhism was introduced and flourished during this time and the previous indigenous religion, Shintoism, was adopted as the people's spiritual faith. The Nara period (710–794 AD) marked the emergence of a strong Japanese state and is often called the Golden Age of Japanese culture.

The Heian period (794–1185 AD) saw the capital move from Nara to Kyoto, where it remained for more than a millennium. Poetry, literature and art flourished during this time. The Kamakura period (1185–1333 AD) saw the feudal government structure replaced by a military dictatorship, which laid the foundation for Japan's feudal era.

Japan entered into a long period of isolation in the middle of the 16th century. The Tokugawa shogunate (1603–1867) that ruled from Edo (modern-day Tokyo) enforced a policy of national seclusion, leaving Japan without any contact with the outside world. Foreign trade was maintained only with China and Korea through an extensive network of trading posts known as "shōgun".

The only Europeans allowed to trade were the Dutch, who were granted a single trading post in 1609. For 250 years this policy would remain in effect. This had a devastating impact on Japan's economy and intellectual development. However, isolation did not prevent European traders from bringing nearly all of Japan's technological innovations, including firearms, gunpowder and clockwork devices; in addition to Christianity, which became popular during the Nanban trade period (1543–1640).

The feudal period lasted from the 12th to 17th centuries. During this time, Japan was ruled by a society of nobles and samurai lords who were bound by a code of honour called Bushido. Samurai warriors were instructed in the art of war, and they also served as government officials and leaders of their communities.

The feudal period in Japan began in the twelfth century and lasted until 1868. It was a time of civil war, as multiple clans fought for control of the country. The Tokugawa clan eventually won and established a new dynasty.

A samurai has a duty to his lord and his family and is expected to be loyal and obedient to both. In return, the lord is responsible for the well-being of his samurai. This sense of loyalty is called “giri” and it governs all samurai behaviour.

In practice, the sense of duty and loyalty was often a two-way street. Many lords were kind and generous to their samurai, who repaid them with loyalty and courage in battle. This mutual respect between lord and samurai led to an era of peace and prosperity for Japan.

In fact, it was the rule of the Tokugawa Shogunate that kept Japan from engaging in foreign trade for two centuries. Tokugawa’s greatest fear was that the samurai, being fierce warriors, would become too ambitious and overthrow him. To prevent this from happening, he placed a ban on foreign trade and also limited contact with the outside world.

The main purpose of this isolationist policy was to prevent Christianity from entering Japan. Many Japanese lords feared that if they allowed Christian missionaries into their lands, their people would be converted to Christianity. This could cause them to lose loyalty to the Tokugawa Shogunate.

Thus, Christianity was outlawed in Japan. Foreigners were not allowed to land on Japanese soil and all Japanese citizens were forbidden from leaving the country. Any Japanese citizen who was caught practicing Christianity would be executed. This law was strictly enforced, and some Christians died for their faith, becoming martyrs for the cause of Christianity.

Edo Period (1603–1868)

The Edo period lasted for over 250 years and is often referred toas the Tokugawa period. This was a time of peace and prosperity for Japan, but it was also a time of strict isolationism. During this period, Japan became increasingly closed off from the rest of the world and Europeans were banned from entering the country.

However, after 1853, when Commodore Matthew Perry of American Navy came to Japan, Japan was forced to open its ports to foreign countries. And yes, you might see the “Last Samurai” movie. But anyway, the opening of Japan to the West in 1860 had a profound effect on Japanese culture. Western clothing was adopted by all levels of society, and the Japanese government was forced to open their country to foreign trade.

Japan’s isolation from the rest of the world ended after Commodore Matthew Perry crossed the ocean with four warships and forced Japan to sign a treaty for opening its ports to American ships. The result was the Treaty of Kanagawa (1854), which allowed Americans to trade freely in Japan.

Despite these restrictions, there were still Christians in Japan during this time. The Church went underground and hid their faith behind Japanese customs and traditions. There are stories of priests living as hermits in caves and some people who secretly practiced the faith.

However, the first official Christian mission in Japan was not established until 1859 when Francis Xavier Collado arrived from Portugal. In 1865, he built a church and then started to build up the Japanese Catholic community. By the end of the Edo period, there were around 200,000 Catholics in Japan and they made up one percent of the population.

The Meiji Restoration

In 1868, Emperor Meiji took control of Japan and ended over two centuries of Tokugawa rule. This meant that Japan was once again open to the world and this included Christianity. It was no longer a forbidden religion and in 1873, the Meiji government made it possible for foreigners to travel freely around Japan.

The Meiji restoration was a time of great political and social change in Japan. After centuries of isolation, the country opened to western influence and began to modernize at an incredible pace. By looking back on the past, we can understand why this period is often considered the beginning of modern Japanese history.

However, Christian missionaries were also allowed to stay in Japan but they had to be approved by the Japanese government. By 1876, a number of churches had been built including one at Nagasaki. The Catholic community grew steadily throughout the late 19th century and a mission was set up in Tokyo. By 1900, the Catholic community numbered some 2,000 and by 1930, there were about 50,000 Catholics in Japan.

The Protestant community had grown to around 1,000 by 1900 and there were a number of foreign-run schools as well as hospitals. However, there was still little interaction between the two Christian communities and most of them were living in isolation from each other.

In 1936, Emperor Hirohito ordered that Japanese society be reformed to match the western model. This had a significant impact on Nagasaki, and the social and political landscape was dramatically altered as a result.

A policy of compulsory assimilation was enforced upon all citizens, regardless of ethnicity or religion. One example of this is that schools were required to use only Japanese in their classes and all other languages were banned. Also, new laws forced people to take Japanese names rather than traditional ones. These changes resulted in many churches being closed down and their services

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