The Yamato period (大和時代, Yamato-jidai?) is the period of Japanese history when the Japanese Imperial court ruled from modern-day Nara Prefecture, then known as Yamato Province.
While conventionally assigned to the period 250–710 (including both the Kofun period (c 150-538) and the Asuka period (538-710)), the actual start of Yamato rule is disputed. The Yamato court's supremacy was challenged during the Kofun period by other polities centered in various parts of Japan. At least it is certain that Yamato clans had major advantages over their neighbouring clans at the 6th century.
This period is divided by the relocation of the capital to Asuka, in modern Nara Prefecture, into the Kofun and Asuka periods. However, the kofun period is an archaeological period while the Asuka period is a historical period. Therefore, many think this is an old division and this concept of period division is not popular in Japan now.
At the era of Prince Shōtoku in the early 7th century, a new constitution was prescribed for Japan based on the Chinese model. After the fall of Baekje (660 AD), the Yamato government sent envoys directly to the Chinese court, from which they obtained a great wealth of philosophical and social structure. In addition to ethics and government, they also adopted the Chinese calendar and many of its religious practices, including Confucianism and Taoism (Japanese: Onmyo).
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