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Interaction with the Asian Continent and the Pottery of an Agricultural Society

"Interaction with the Asian Continent and the Pottery of an Agricultural Society"

Heiseikan Japanese Archaeology Gallery  March 2, 2021 (Tue) - September 5, 2021 (Sun)

  
Vessel in the Shape of a Clay Figurine (Dogū)
Found in Ueda City, Nagano, Yayoi period, 4th–3rd century BC (Gift of Mr. Shimomura Ichinosuke and Mr. Shimomura Gorō)

About 2,400 years ago, bronze and iron tools as well as rice cultivation were introduced from China and Korea, later spreading throughout most of Japan. People began living in villages with irrigated rice fields, marking the beginning of the agricultural Yayoi period. Two unique cultures developed in parallel with Yayoi society: the Post-Jomon culture on the island of Hokkaido to the northeast, where rice cultivation did not take root, and the Late Shell Mound culture on the Nansei Islands to the southwest.

Yayoi pottery was used during this period. Although it was unglazed like the Jomon pottery of the previous period, it was thinner and fired at a higher temperature, making it more durable and lighter in color. Vessels with specific functions such as urns for boiling, jars for storage, and stemmed bowls for serving food were created to meet the needs of this new agricultural society.

In the first half of the Yayoi period (ca. 4th–3rd century BC), pottery with shared characteristics known as Ongagawa-type pottery was created throughout western Japan. Vessels showing influence from this pottery have been excavated in eastern and northern Japan, suggesting the diffusion of a shared culture. Moreover, during the mid-Yayoi period (ca. 2nd–1st century BC) use of the potter’s wheel and other new techniques were adopted.

Major Work(s) on Exhibit 9 results
Designation Name Amount Creation Excavation Period Acquisition Ownership Comment
_MD_RECOMMEND Bronze Bell ("Dōtaku") Found in Minabe Town, Wakayama Yayoi period, 1st-3rd century J-7127
_MD_RECOMMEND Pot Found in Osaka City, Osaka Yayoi period, 4th–3rd century BC J-36629-6
_MD_RECOMMEND Jar Found in Osaka City, Osaka Yayoi period, 4th–3rd century BC J-36629-11
Footed Vessel Found at Funahashi Site, Osaka Yayoi period, 2nd–1st century BC Gif of Mr. Tamura Atsumasa, J-38746
_MD_RECOMMEND Bowl Found at Ozakata Site, Ibaraki Yayoi period, 2nd–1st century BC Gift of Mr. Tanaka Kunio, J-34970
_MD_RECOMMEND Vessel in the Shape of a Clay Figurine ("Dogū") Found in Ueda City, Nagano Yayoi period, 4th–3rd century BC Gift of Mr. Shimomura Ichinosuke and Mr. Shimomura Gorō, J-7532
_MD_RECOMMEND Jar Found at Ozakata Site, Ibaraki Yayoi period, 2nd–1st century BC Gift of Mr. Tanaka Kunio, J-34958
_MD_RECOMMEND Important Cultural Property Jar Found in Asagiri Town, Kumamoto Yayoi period, 1st–3rd century Private collection
_MD_RECOMMEND Important Cultural Property Gourd-Shaped Jar Found in Asagiri Town, Kumamoto Yayoi period, 1st–3rd century Private collection
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