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Why Leave The Nagaoka Capital?

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Chapter Summary

Although several details on the progress of construction and Kanmu?s involvement have been preserved, none of the entries provides a straight explanation for the abandonment of the Nagaoka capital. However, the fact that Kanmu had the power to enforce a relocation of capitals is not sufficient to explain the construction of a second capital in less than a decade, especially given the realm?s financial situation. Therefore, Kanmu and his entourage must have been strongly convinced that there was no option but to abandon a project. Over the years, scholars have put forward several justifications for the move. This chapter analyses and discusses the most important of that justification. If neither the financial support from the Hata family nor fear for the vengeful ghost of Sawara were the reasons behind the transfer, then what was the real motive for moving the capital? The chapter attempts to answer this question.

Keywords: financial support; Hata family; Kanmu; Nagaoka capital; Sawara; vengeful ghost



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