Emperor Jomei

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Emperor Jomei (舒明天皇 Jomei-tennō?, 593 – November 17, 641) was the 34th emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession.[2]

Jomei's reign spanned the years from 629 through 641.[3]


Traditional narrative

Before Jomei's ascension to the Chrysanthemum Throne, his personal name (imina) was Tamura (田村?) or Prince Tamura (田村皇子 Tamura-no-Ōji?).[4] As emperor, his name would have been Okinagatarashi Hironuka no mikoto.[5]

He was a grandson of Emperor Bidatsu both paternally and maternally. His father was Prince Oshisakanohikohito-no-Ōe, his mother was Princess Nukate-hime, who was a younger sister of his father.[6]

Events in Jomei's reign

He succeeded his great aunt, Empress Suiko. Suiko did not make it clear who was to succeed her after her death. Before her death, she called Tamura and Prince Shōtoku's son, Prince Yamashiro-no-Ōe, and gave some brief advice to each of them. After her death the court was divided into two factions, each supporting one of the princes for the throne. Soga no Emishi, the head of Soga clan, supported Tamura. He claimed that Empress Suiko's last words suggested her desire that Tamura succeed her to the throne. Prince Yamashiro-no-Ōe was later attacked by the Soga clan and committed suicide along with his entire family.

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