Emperor Kōrei

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Emperor Kōrei (孝霊天皇 Kōrei-tennō?); also known as Ooyamatonekohikofutoni no Mikoto; was the 7th emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession.[2]

No firm dates can be assigned to this emperor's life or reign, but he is conventionally considered to have reigned from 290 BC-215 BC.[3]


Legendary narrative

Modern scholars have come to question the existence of at least the first nine emperors; and Kōrei's descendant, Emperor Sujin is the first many agree might have actually existed.[4] The name Kōrei-tennō was assigned to him posthumously by later generations.[citation needed]

Kōrei 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.[5] 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;[6] 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]

In Kojiki and Nihonshoki only his name and genealogy were recorded. He is believed to be son of Emperor Kōan; and his mother is believed to have been Oshihime, who was the daughter of Ametarashihiko-Kunio-shihito-no-mikoto.[8] The Japanese have traditionally accepted this sovereign's historical existence, and an Imperial misasagi or tomb for Kōrei is currently maintained; however, no extant contemporary records have been discovered which confirm a view that this historical figure actually reigned. He was the sixth of eight emperors without specific legends associated with them, also known as the "eight undocumented monarchs" (欠史八代, Kesshi-hachidai?).[9]

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