Kitora Burial Mound

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-3934-5_8684-3

Inside the Kitora burial mound at Asuka, a village in the northern half of Nara prefecture in Japan, is a tomb that dates approximately to CE 700 and has a celestial map and murals of cosmological significance. Both the map and the murals bear evidence of scientific and artistic diffusion from China to Japan via the Korean peninsula, with the direct cultural link being to the northern Korean kingdom of Goguryeo (37 BCE to CE 668). Most notable, however, is the fact that the map is the oldest extant celestial map that is currently known to be scientific in spirit and, more or less, complete.

The Mound and the Tomb

Kitora dates to ca. CE 700 and is thereby a rather late burial mound since most of those in Japan were constructed in the fourth, fifth, and sixth centuries CE. Although it had been replaced by nearby Fujiwara in 694 (until 710), Asuka had served as the capital city of the Yamato state throughout the seventh century, and Kitora seems to have been built in the aftermath of a...

Keywords

Korean Peninsula Spirit Beast Burial Mound Southern Wall Celestial Equator 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.
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References

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Languages and CulturesNagoya UniversityNagoyaJapan