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Another Transfer Of Capitals

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Chapter Summary

Over the course of twenty-two months following the selection of the new construction site, the transfer of the capital from Nagaoka to Uda was thoroughly prepared. Government officials were asked to contribute actively to the construction process, deities and ancestors were notified, and local farmers received compensation. Also, the records indicate that Kanmu was closely monitoring the progress of construction and that Chinese philosophical thought again seems to have influenced the timing of the transfer. Although the records do show closer involvement on the part of Kanmu, they remain vague on the reasons behind the move. Unlike the practice during Shōmu?s age, the court officials and merchants seem not to have been asked for their opinion on a decision that would affect the lives of many. Therefore, Kanmu must have been a strong ruler able to enforce another expensive project in an already strained economy.

Keywords: Chinese philosophical thought; construction process; deities; Kanmu; Nagaoka; Uda



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