Introduction to Japan

Ancient Japan had many advances in many things in the world today. Japan had accomplishments in fashion, literature, art, architecture, entertainment, and religion. Some of theses this were taken from Japan and are still used and seen in the world today.

Ancient Japanese Fashion

The nobles loved beauty. Their wardrobes had many silk robes. Women wore long silk robes of 12 layers. Nobles often carried decorative fans to complete their outfits.


Writing was very popular among the nobles. Women epically took great care of how they spoke and wrote. Men wrote in Chinese and women wrote is Japanese. Many people consider The Tale of Genji one of Japan's greatest novel.

Visual arts

Japan's nobles loved the visual arts. They painted using bold and bright colors. They also liked paintings that illustrated stories. They also practiced calligraphy, or fancy writing. Calligraphers often spent hours carefully copying poems.


The nobles worked very hard to make their city beautiful. They copied Chinese building styles especially in their temples. The Japanese used wood frames that curved slightly. They often didn't paint the wood to make it look more natural. The nobles liked simple designs with tile roofs.

Performing arts

Performing arts were very popular in Japan. Roots of ancient Japanese performing arts can be traced back to ancient Japan. Their performances were wild and fun and often included acrobats. Their plays the actors would mimic people very skillfully. They also had lots of music in their shows.

Buddhism in Japan

Most people in Japan followed Buddhism. A new form of Buddhism stared in Japan called Pure Land Buddhism. This form of Buddhism didn't require any special rituals. Later another form of Buddhism firmed called Zen arrived. This arrived from China it believed that neither faith nor good behavior led to wisdom. Instead, people seeking wisdom should practice self-discipline and meditation.

Lady Murasaki Shikibu

Lady Murasaki Shikibu was a noble and a servant to the empress Akiko. She wrote lively observations of court life in her diaries. She also wrote The Tail of Genji. This is Important because it is one of the worlds oldest novels and help shaped literature in the world today. It also describes the daily lives and customs in Japan at that time.

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