Tokyo National Museum
Izumo and Yamato: The Birth of Ancient Japan
Heiseikan Special Exhibition Galleries
January 15, 2020 – March 8, 2020
The year 2020 marks 1,300 years since the compilation of Japan’s oldest official history, The Chronicles of Japan (Nihon Shoki). The history contains two narratives: one of sacred lzumo inhabited by the gods of Shinto and ruled over by Ōkuninushi; and one of mortal Yamato, a place of human governance ruled over by the emperor.
In partnership with their present-day counterparts, Shimane Prefecture (Izumo) and Nara Prefecture (Yamato), this special exhibition brings together rare and remarkable artifacts to explore these two foundational pillars of ancient Japan—the seat of sacred power in Izumo and the seat of political power in Yamato.