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Culture of the Late Kofun Period: Kaibozuka Tumulus


    Culture of the Late Kofun Period: Kaibozuka Tumulus

    Heiseikan Japanese Archaeology Gallery : July 20, 2016 (Wed) - October 30, 2016 (Sun)

    Kaibozuka Tumulus is located in Ibaraki, Osaka Prefecture, and is an example of a kofun burial mound from the late Kofun period (6th century). In 1909 and 1935, many mortuary objects were excavated from its stone burial chamber as well as the mound itself.
    Notable findings include a ring-shaped pommel of a decorated sword, which is renowned as the oldest excavated object of its kind, as well as equestrian objects which prominently show the transition to Silla-related styles in the latter half of the late Kofun period (late 6th century). Furthermore, Sue ware pottery excavated here came to be designated as Kaibozuka-style Sue ware. These artifacts are essential materials for determining dates in the late Kofun period. In addition, silver objects such as spearheads, gardenia seed-shaped beads, and comma-shaped beads, together with other metal beads and decorated weapons that are rarely found in Japan, further characterize the artifacts from Kaibozuka tumulus.

    This exhibition presents an overview of the Kaibozuka artifacts, which have been recognized since early times as examples defining late Kofun culture, and have contributed to determining dates in the Kofun period. Moreover, through comparison with important artifacts from other time periods, this exhibition looks into the development of and the background surrounding swords with ring pommels, equestrian objects, and Sue ware.

    We hope this exhibit will enhance visitors’ understandings of how, in archaeology, objects are dated based on their physical attributes.


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