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Guide To Japanese Historical Periods

Jomon Period

Japan Time Line Edo Period Momoyama Period Muromachi Period Kamakura Period Heian Period Nara Period Kofun Period Yayoi Period Jomon Period

From This Period

Standing Kannon
Standing Kannon

Asuka Period


Korean envoys introduced Buddhism to Japan in 552. Empress Suiko and the prince-regent Shotoku championed the new religion. In less than 100 years it became firmly established, sharing the Japanese spiritual psyche with the indigenous belief system known as Shinto, or Way of the Gods. Monks and craftsmen from Korea and China were invited to immigrate to provide the objects of worship necessary for the new religion. Buddhist establishments became major art patrons, and from the 7th through the 11th centuries, there are few surviving works of art that are not Buddhist in inspiration. Painting and sculpture of the Asuka Period are patterned largely on Korean and Chinese prototypes.