East Asian Mythology: China and Japan

Sources of Japanese Mythology

What are the sources of pre-Buddhist, or Shinto, mythology?

In the seventh century C.E. the Emperor Temmu ordered that the myths preserved in written fragments and the oral tradition be gathered together to establish aristocratic genealogies. His ultimate purpose, in all likelihood, was to trace the genealogy of the imperial family to the creation of the Japanese islands. The works which emerged eventually from Temmu’s orders, the Kojiki and the Nihon shoki, or Nihongi, became the primary sources for Japanese mythology.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Mythology Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App