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The Search For A Suitable Site

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Chapter Summary

The first clear reference in the historical records to Kanmu?s decision to construct a new capital appears only in mid-784, when a group of court officials was dispatched to inspect a possible site. The Hata were an immigrant kinship group that possessed vast tracts of land in the northern part of Yamashiro province. Traditionally, it is thought that the family, known as weavers, sake brewers, and hydraulic and construction engineers, made large financial and technological contributions to the construction of the Nagaoka capital and was thus influential in determining the location of the site. The Hata and Haji families seem to have played no larger part in the relocation process than various other local families. Rather, Nagaoka?s geographic relation to the homeland of the Kudara no konikishi where Kanmu twice observed the sacrifice to the Lord on High in legitimation of his reign, was a deciding factor.

Keywords: Haji; Hata; Kanmu; Nagaoka capital; new capital; relocation process



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