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Guide To Japanese Historical Periods

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

Cultures with long histories—like many in Asia—can be difficult to grasp. This guide to Japan's historical periods describes its major eras in terms of artistic production and significant political developments.

To use this guide, select from the dynasties at right or click on the timeline above. Use the timeline or the arrows at the top of the pages to move through time, period by period; or return to the list by selecting Japanese Historical Periods from the navigation at left.

Jomon Period (ca. 11,000 - 300 B.C.)
Yayoi Period (ca. 300 B.C. - 300 A.D.)
Kofun period (300 - 552 A.D.)
Asuka Period (552-645)
Nara Period (645-794)
Arts of the Heian Period (794-1185)
Arts of the Kamakura Period (1185-1333)
Arts of the Muromachi Period (1392-1573)
Arts of the Momoyama Period (1573-1615)
Arts of the Edo Period (1615-1868)