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Kojiki

kojiki and nihongi, kojiki
Kojiki 古事記, "Records of Ancient Matters" or "An Account of Ancient Matters", also known as Furukotofumi,1 is the oldest extant chronicle in Japan, dating from the early 8th century 711–712 and composed by Ō no Yasumaro at the request of Empress Genmei2 The Kojiki is a collection of myths concerning the origin of the four home islands of Japan, and the Kami Along with the Nihon Shoki, the myths contained in the Kojiki are part of the inspiration behind many practices Later, the myths were re-appropriated for Shinto practices including the misogi purification ritual3456

Contents

  • 1 Structure
    • 11 Sections
  • 2 Study of the Kojiki
    • 21 English language translations
  • 3 Manuscripts
  • 4 See also
  • 5 Notes
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links

Structureedit

The Kojiki contains various songs/poems While the historical records and myths are written in a form of Chinese with a heavy mixture of Japanese elements, the songs are written with Chinese characters that are only used to convey sounds This special use of Chinese characters is called Man'yōgana, a knowledge of which is critical to understanding these songs, which are written in Old Japanese

Sectionsedit

The Kojiki is divided into three parts: the Kamitsumaki 上巻, "first volume", the Nakatsumaki 中巻, "middle volume" and the Shimotsumaki 下巻, "lower volume"

  • The Kamitsumaki, also known as the Kamiyo no Maki 神代巻, "Volume of the Age of the Gods", includes the preface of the Kojiki, and is focused on the deities of creation and the births of various deities of the kamiyo period, or Age of the Gods The Kamitsumaki also outlines the myths concerning the foundation of Japan It describes how Ninigi-no-Mikoto, grandson of Amaterasu and great-grandfather of Emperor Jimmu, descended from heaven to Takachihonomine in Kyūshū and became the progenitor of the Japanese imperial line467
  • The Nakatsumaki begins with the story of Emperor Jimmu, the first Emperor, and his conquest of Japan, and ends with the 15th Emperor, Emperor Ōjin The second through ninth emperors' reigns are recorded in a minimum of detail, with only their names, the names of their various descendants, and the place-names of their palaces and tombs listed, and no mention of their achievements Many of the stories in this volume are mythological, and the allegedly historical information in them is highly suspect Recent studies support the view that these emperors were invented to push Jimmu's reign further back to the year 660 BC
  • The Shimotsumaki covers the 16th to 33rd emperors and, unlike previous volumes, has very limited references to the interactions with deities These interactions are very prominent in the first and second volumes Information about the 24th to the 33rd emperors are largely missing, as well

Study of the Kojikiedit

Kojiki-den by Motoori Norinaga

In the Edo period, Motoori Norinaga studied the Kojiki intensively He produced a 44-volume study of the Kojiki called Kojiki-den 古事記伝, "Kojiki commentary"

English language translationsedit

  • Chamberlain, Basil Hall 1882 A translation of the "Ko-ji-ki" or Records of ancient matters Yokohama, Japan: R Meiklejohn and Co, Printers wwwsacred-textscom
  • Philippi, Donald L 1968/1969 Kojiki Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press and Tokyo: University of Tokyo Press ISBN 978-0691061603
  • Heldt, Gustav 2014 The Kojiki: An Account of Ancient Matters New York: Columbia University Press ISBN 978-0-231-16389-7

Manuscriptsedit

There are two major branches of Kojiki manuscripts: Ise and Urabe The extant Urabe branch consists of 36 existing manuscripts all based on the 1522 copies by Urabe Kanenaga The Ise branch may be subdivided into the Shinpukuji-bon 真福寺本 manuscript of 1371–1372 and the Dōka-bon 道果本 manuscripts The Dōka sub-branch consists of:

  • the Dōka-bon 道果本 manuscript of 1381; only the first half of the first volume remains
  • the Dōshō-bon 道祥本 manuscript of 1424; only the first volume remains, and there are many defects
  • the Shun'yu-bon 春瑜本 manuscript of 1426; one volume

The Shinpukuji-bon manuscript 1371–1372 is the oldest existing manuscript While divided into the Ise branch, it is actually a mixture of the two branches The monk Ken'yu based his copy on Ōnakatomi Sadayo's copy In 1266, Sadayo copied volumes one and three, but did not have access to the second volume Finally, in 1282, he obtained access to the second volume through a Urabe-branch manuscript that he used to transcribe

See alsoedit

  • Shinto portal
  • Historiographical Institute of the University of Tokyo
  • International Research Center for Japanese Studies
  • Japanese Historical Text Initiative
  • Historiography of Japan
  • Atsuta Shrine
  • The White Hare of Inaba
  • Kokki
  • Kujiki
  • Kyūji
  • Mahoroba
  • Nihon Shoki
  • Philosophy of History
  • Teiki
  • Tennōki

Notesedit

  1. ^ McDowell, Michael; Brown, Nathan Robert 2009 World Religions At Your Fingertips Penguin ISBN 1101014695 
  2. ^ Habersetzer, Gabrielle & Roland 2004 Encyclopédie technique, historique, biographique et culturelle des arts martiaux de l'Extrême-Orient Amphora p 380 ISBN 2-85180-660-2 
  3. ^ Reader, Ian 2008 Simple Guides: Shinto Kuperard p 33,60 ISBN 1-85733-433-7 
  4. ^ a b "Kojiki" Encyclopedia of Japan Tokyo: Shogakukan 2012 OCLC 56431036 Archived from the original on 2007-08-25 Retrieved 2012-09-18 
  5. ^ "古事記" Kojiki Dijitaru Daijisen in Japanese Tokyo: Shogakukan 2012 OCLC 56431036 Archived from the original on 2007-08-25 Retrieved 2012-09-18 
  6. ^ a b "古事記" Kojiki Nihon Kokugo Daijiten in Japanese Tokyo: Shogakukan 2012 OCLC 56431036 Archived from the original on 2007-08-25 Retrieved 2012-09-18 
  7. ^ "Ninigi no Mikoto" Encyclopedia of Japan Tokyo: Shogakukan 2012 OCLC 56431036 Archived from the original on 2007-08-25 Retrieved 2012-09-18 

Referencesedit

  • Bentley, John R The Authenticity of Sendai Kuji Hongi: A New Examination of Texts, With a Translation And Commentary ISBN 90-04-15225-3
  • Brownlee, John S 1997 Japanese historians and the national myths, 1600-1945: The Age of the Gods and Emperor Jimmu Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press ISBN 0-7748-0644-3 Tokyo: University of Tokyo Press ISBN 4-13-027031-1
  • Brownlee, John S 1991 Political Thought in Japanese Historical Writing: From Kojiki 712 to Tokushi Yoron 1712 Waterloo, Ontario: Wilfrid Laurier University Press ISBN 0-88920-997-9
  • Nihon Koten Bungaku Daijiten Henshū Iinkai 1986 Nihon Koten Bungaku Daijiten in Japanese Iwanami Shoten ISBN 4-00-080067-1 
  • Ono, Motonori Shinto: The Kami Way
  • Starrs, Roy 2005 "The Kojiki as Japan's National Narrative", in Asian Futures, Asian Traditions, edited by Edwina Palmer Folkestone, Kent: Global Oriental, ISBN 1-901903-16-8
  • Yamaguchi, Yoshinori; Takamitsu Kōnoshi 1997 Nihon Koten Bungaku Zenshū: Kojiki Tōkyō: Shogakukan ISBN 4-09-658001-5 

External linksedit

  • in English Chamberlain's translation of Kojiki:
    • full text at the Internet Sacred Text Archive
    • scan from The sacred books and early literature of the East, edited by Charles Horne
  • in English Encyclopedia of Shinto Kokugakuin University
  • in English Basic Terms of Shinto Kokugakuin University
  • in Japanese Online original text of the Kojiki and other texts
  • in Japanese Waseda University Library: 1644 manuscript, three volumes

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