Emperor Suinin

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Emperor of Japan
Sugawara no Fushimi no higashi no misasagi (Nara)

Emperor Suinin (垂仁天皇, Suinin-tennō) was the 11th emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession.[2] Historians consider Emperor Suinin to be a legendary person;[3] and the name Suinin-tennō was created for him posthumously by later generations.

No certain dates can be assigned to this emperor's life or reign.[4] The conventionally accepted names and sequence of the early emperors were not to be confirmed as "traditional" until the reign of Emperor Kammu, who was the 50th monarch of the Yamato dynasty.[5]

The Gukanshō records that Suinin he ruled from the palace of Tamaki-no-miya at Makimuku in what will come to be known as Yamato province.[6]

Traditional history[change | change source]

Suinin is almost certainly a legend; but the Kojiki and Nihonshoki record his name and genealogy. He was the third son of Emperor Sujin.[6]

Events of Suinin's life[change | change source]

The limited information about Suinin does not imply that no such person ever existed. Very little information is available for study prior to the reign of the 29th monarch, Emperor Kimmei.[7]

One of Suinin's daughters was Yamatohime-no-mikoto. She established a site for ceremonies honouring the Shinto sun goddess (Amaterasu Omikami).[8] In the region of Ise, she founded the Ise Shrine.[6] She became the first Saiō at Ise.

The records of Asama Shrine at the base of Mount Fuji describe events in this time frame. The earliest Shinto ceremonies in honour of Konohanasakuya-hime were in the 3rd year of the reign of Emperor Suinin (垂仁天皇3年).[9]

Nihonshoki describes a wrestling match during his era. This was the origin of Sumo wrestling.[10]

After his death[change | change source]

The mausoleum (misasagi) of Emperor Suinin in Nara Prefecture.

This emperor's official name after his death (his posthumous name) was regularized many centuries after the lifetime which was ascribed to Suinin.[11]

The actual site of his grave is not known. According to the Imperial Household Agency, this emperor is venerated at a memorial Shinto shrine (misasagi) at Nara.[1]

Related pages[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

The chrysanthemum symbol of the Japanese emperor and his family.
  1. 1.0 1.1 Imperial Household Agency (Kunaichō), 孝安天皇 (11); retrieved 2011-10-19.
  2. Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, pp. 9-10; Brown, Delmer M. (1979). Gukanshō, pp. 253-254 ; Varley, Paul. (1980). Jinnō Shōtōki, pp. 95-96; Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2002). "Traditional order of Tennō" in Japan encyclopedia, pp. 962-963.
  3. Kelly, Charles F. "Kofun Culture," Japanese Archaeology. April 27, 2009; retrieved 2011-10-19.
  4. Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial House of Japan, p. 30.
  5. Aston, William George. (1896). Nihongi, pp. 109.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Brown, p. 253.
  7. Titsingh, pp. 34-36; Brown, pp. 261-262; Varley, pp. 123-124.
  8. Ponsonby-Fane, Imperial House, p. 32.
  9. Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1962). Studies in Shinto and Shrines, p.458.
  10. Aston, William. (1998). Nihongi, Vol. 1, pp. 167-187.
  11. Aston, pp. 147-148.

Other websites[change | change source]

Media related to Emperor Suinin at Wikimedia Commons

Preceded by
Emperor Sujin
Legendary Emperor of Japan

29 BC - 70 AD
(traditional dates)
Succeeded by
Emperor Keikō