Emperor Jimmu

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Emperor Jimmu (神武天皇 Jinmu-tennō?) was the first Emperor of Japan[1], according to the traditional order of succession.[2] He is also known as Kamuyamato Iwarebiko, his personal names are Wakamikenu no Mikoto or Sano no Mikoto.

The Imperial house of Japan traditionally based its claim to the throne on its descent from Jimmu.[3] No firm dates can be assigned to this early emperor's life or reign, nor for the reigns of his early successors. The reign of Emperor Kimmei (509?-571 AD), the 29th emperor of Japan according to the traditional order of succession, is the first for which contemporary historiography are able to assign verifiable dates.[4]

Contents

Legendary narrative

Modern scholars have come to question the existence of at least the first nine emperors; and Jimmu's descendant, Emperor Sujin is the first many agree might have actually existed.[5] The name Jimmu-tennō was assigned to him posthumously by later generations.[citation needed]

Jimmu is regarded by historians as a "legendary emperor" because of the paucity of information about him, which does not necessarily imply that no such person ever existed. There is insufficient material available for further verification and study.[6] The reign of Emperor Kimmei (509-571), the 29th emperor of Japan according to the traditional order of succession, is the first for which contemporary historiography are able to assign verifiable dates;[4] however, the conventionally accepted names and dates of the early emperors were not to be confirmed as "traditional" until the reign of Emperor Kammu (737–806), the 50th sovereign of the Yamato dynasty.[7]

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