Japan before the shoguns (until the XII century.) - History of the East

14.3. Japan before the shoguns (until the XII century.)

The history of the settlement of the islands of Japan goes far into the depths of millennia, and here, as in the entire island world of South Asia, some racial-ethnic groups over the millennia have been layered on others, mixing with them or pushing them away. On the basis of the mixing of Mongoloid Manchurotungus tribes with Paleo-Asiatic and Malayan at the turn of our era, the nucleus of the Japanese proper formed, one of the groups, Yamato, in the III-V centuries. managed to subjugate the rest, laying the foundation of the first state on the islands. Perhaps, it is even very likely that the decisive impact on the part of China with its statehood, which was very developed by that time, played its part. It is known that already in the III century. in Japan there were a lot of migrants from China and Korea, some of them eventually being included in the class of unequal be, or bemin.


In Chinese sources, one can find references to ties with Japan. Here it is worth recalling, in particular, the legendary legends, according to which in the III century. BC. the first Chinese emperor, Qin Shi-huandi, sent Taoists to search for the elixir of immortality to the islands located in the east - and there are no others other than Japanese (however, the Taoists did not land on the grounds that they were prevented by the abundance of sharks) , as well as the sending of gifts from tribal chiefs from these islands.

The internal structure of the early Japanese state was typical of the East. At the head was a ruler, he was surrounded by a clan noble who held key administrative posts, including the management of regional units, to which the country was divided. Of course, all this did not come about right away, but at our disposal there are no data that would allow us to describe the process in more detail.

Unlike Korea, Japan was located on islands that were far from the Chinese limits. But the influence on the process of politicalogenesis in it from China, either directly or through the Koreans, is beyond any doubt.

The bulk of the population consisted of peasants who paid rent-tax to the treasury. In addition to them, there were also inferior and slaves in society, both categories, it should be assumed, mainly from among foreigners. These categories of people were owned by the state or were under the leadership of the nobility. Since the VI. The Chinese influence on the islands began to be felt more strongly. At first it went along with Buddhism, spread from China through Korea and absorbed along the way much of traditional Chinese culture. A little later, especially after the addition of the centralized empires of Sui and then Tan in China, the flow of Confucian influence became very strong.


When at the end of the VI. Prince Shotokushi came to power in Japan, they created famous laws ("The Law of 17 articles", 604), in which the principles of existence and management based on Confucianism and Buddhism were formulated, including the main one - the principle of the supreme sovereignty of the ruler and the strict subordination of the younger to the elder. Shotoku generously invited Chinese and Korean monks and craftsmen to Japan, and also sent young Japanese to study in Korea and China.

Meanwhile, despite the active borrowing of the Chinese model of the organization of society and the state, the rulers of Japan were not ready to create a stable and strong centralized administration system. Rising to the recent tribal past, Japanese society was torn apart by internecine strife, and the great houses began to use it more and more, among which the house of Soga stood out. In the middle of the VII century. the opponents of the Soga, led by the princes of the ruling clan, opposed this influential house and managed to destroy it. As a result of the coup of (Taik's coup, 645), the king of the country turned out to be the prince Karu, who took the title tenno , & quot , son of Heaven & quot ;. The right hand ruler were representatives of the house Fujiwara, helped him to overthrow Soga.

The reforms that followed the Taika coup were called upon to resolutely reorganize the entire country according to the Chinese model, beginning with the role in the administration of the centralized beginning and ending with agrarian relations. The government apparatus was established with the relevant departments (eight departments), and on the provinces - provinces and counties headed by governors and district chiefs. The population began to be divided into paid taxes of the full, ryomin , and not paying their incomplete, semmin. Full-time peasants received state-owned land allotted once every six years, for which they were obliged to pay rent -tax of grain and fabrics, and also to serve duties. Officials had official official duties, the size of which varied depending on the rank and rank. Some influential people received allotments for life, sometimes even with the right to transfer them by inheritance for one to three generations, rarely more. The slaves were also provided with allotments, one-third of the peasant. The underemployed were elevated in status and turned out to be almost full, some of them descendants of descendants from China and Korea who had an education - turned into officials. Of course, all business and other documentation was conducted by Chinese characters.

The Taika Reforms, supplemented in 701 with the special Taihoryo code, laid the foundations of the Japanese sociopolitical power-ownership structure with all its future specifics. They also created the foundation for the heyday of the Japanese culture of the Nara period (VIII century), when the new capital of Japan, Nara with its numerous palaces, avenues, temples, monasteries, etc., was beautifully rebuilt on the model of the Thai capital Chanani. . The ancient religion of the Japanese shinto ("path of the spirits"), largely enriched by Chinese Taoism, managed to find a way of co-existence with Buddhism within the so-called robo-shinto. All this, taken together, gave a strong impetus to the development of ancient Japanese literature, mythology, as well as the difficult work of making chronicles, geographical descriptions, etc.

In short, the Japanese quickly overcame their backlog from the great neighbor, borrowing everything that is possible. However, at the same time, there was something that markedly distinguished Japan from both China and Korea, as well as from the vast majority of other non-European societies. The features in question were related to the huge role of the tribal nobility and a more pronounced trend towards privatization, <>>> т. strong strong тенден тенден тенден strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong strong, to the growth of the role and importance of private ownership with the weakness of the authority of the center. These features did not appear immediately. During the Nara period, they were almost not noticeable - the reputed and revered Chinese model reigned supreme. But since IX century. the situation began to change little by little. First of all, the system of state power was not as strong as it was in China (even in Korea). The divine Tenno, as it turned out at the end of the 8th century, reigned more than actually ruled the country. The Confucian elite of administrative officials on the Chinese model around it did not work out, as there was no system of their regular reproduction with competitive examinations as its base. This was the first fundamental difference of the Japanese model from Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese.

The power vacuum was filled with an influential Fujiwara house, whose representatives from generation to generation not only hereditary regent rulers under the emperors, but also married emperors to women of their clan. Having rebuilt the new city of Heian (Kyoto), again according to the Chinese model, the Japanese transferred the center of the country's administration there, thus making Heian another capital of Japan (since 794). VI-XI centuries. The influence of Fujiwara grew so strong that the emperors turned almost into puppets in their hands. And although they, relying on some dissatisfied with the influence of Fujiwara aristocratic nobility, tried to resist from time to time, this did not lead to success. On the contrary, there was even a certain stereotype of a dual, with time, even triple power. As a rule, each emperor did not stay on the throne for too long. Having ascended to it at a young age (Fujiwara's house was usually interested in this), he renounced power in the years of maturity in favor of his minor heir and went to one or another Buddhist monastery, while retaining a certain influence on the state of affairs in the country . Gradually this practice began to be used by some ex-emperors to create an alternative political center in their monastery, in which both noble births and influential monasteries competed with Fujiwara.

But, although the mentioned alternative power centers sometimes became powerful enough, the mere fact of the dissipation of power between two or three centers was in the hands of Fujiwara, whose center in Heian was the main one in this situation.

What did this influential clan rely on in the struggle for power? The fact is that in the absence of an established system of reproduction of Confucian officials, the apparatus of the bureaucracy, formed according to the Chinese standard, inevitably had to prove ineffective. It is not surprising that in the territorial administration of Japan the posts of governors and district chiefs seized and almost hereditarily held behind the local noble houses, as a result of which the power-property structure gravitating to centralization acquired clear signs of feudal modification, within which every strong aristocrat felt himself master in of their locality. And he not only felt himself a master, but he really was also, for in the sphere of agrarian relations, for all the same reason, the all-inclusive all-inclusive system with a mutual guarantee in the framework of five- and ten-yardsticks was also untenable.

From the IX-X centuries. state allotments began to turn into actually hereditary possessions of peasant families, and the aggregate of several villages, not necessarily neighboring ones, could be the possession of shoen, ie. possession of a noble house, ruling in this district. Of course, the owners of hereditary soyen were obliged to send some of their income to the center - they were still formally representatives of the authorities in the district, but this did not prevent such noble houses from feeling like the masters of the district. Approximately from the X century. in Japan, all power on the ground was in the hands of privately owned noble houses , owners of soyen of different sizes. This modification of the structure, formed as an alternative to the classical Chinese Confucian bureaucratic administration, should be considered the second fundamental difference between the Japanese model the organization of the state and society. But that's not all.

The process of privatization and the addition of the soyen system had a painful effect on the peasants who were obliged to maintain their owners well and, moreover, to send taxes on their behalf to the center. Perhaps, quantitatively, from the point of view of the norm of extortion, the difference was not too big (in the end it does not matter whether to feed a representative of local government, ie an official, or the owner of soyen). But from the point of view of the organization of the administration and in general the entire structure of power, it turned out to be enormous. The fact is that the local authorities treated the peasants differently, and the peasants to the authorities. The ruin of peasant farms in China led to insurrections, as well as to the withdrawal of peasants from their homes. However, if this was considered undesirable in the Chinese Empire, but, as a rule, it was allowed (does it not matter whether the peasant settles, if only he pays taxes to the state), then in Japan with its owners, the shoen was different. Peasant farms fed them, that is, these owners, so that it was impossible to admit the withdrawal of the peasants. It is not surprising that measures were taken in Japan against the free movement of peasants , which can be considered an indirect evidence of the emergence of sufficiently strong feudal tendencies in society.

In order to fight the insurgents and prevent their departure from the land, the owners of the shoen began to create detachments of warriors, warriors, professional soldiers, much more rigidly organized than, say, what constituted militias and guards in the possessions of strong houses in China period of the Three Kingdoms, Nan-bei Chao or even the end of Han. Over time, fighting squads of professional soldiers, including small seekers who sought the protection of the most noble and powerful Shoeen owners, began to become a closed class of Samurai warriors ( beads ). A code of military ethics, a code of conduct for the samurai, consisted primarily of the classical Confucian idea of ​​fidelity to the master, up to the unconditional willingness to give his life for him, and in case of failure or dishonor commit suicide, to make hara-kiri following a certain ritual (this is an important part of the norms of the code bushido). Samurai soon turned into a formidable weapon of landowners in their fierce internecine struggle for power. This led to the fact that already from the XI-XII centuries. Japan began to differ very clearly from China and in another fundamentally important plan. The powers that be and the entire system of administration in this country were based not on the ordinary bureaucracy or the military stratum, which was in the service of the state, and which was paid for it, most often in the form of official the official conditional allotments, and to the samurai knights who were loyal to their masters depending on the noble houses. And this is the third fundamental difference between the Japanese model of society and the state from the classical Confucian Chinese model.

All these closely related to each other, the mutually conditioned main differences of the Japanese model explain a lot in the destinies of Japan. But it should be noted that the obvious bias toward private ownership and feudal structure did not lead Japan into a destructive state of fragmentation and decentralization, which would be natural for another society in a similar situation. The fact is that the decentralization tendencies in Japan during the Middle Ages were counterbalanced by strong centripetal orientations, as a result of which a certain stable and very specific balance of power was created. This became especially noticeable by the end of the 12th century, when during the fierce struggle between the two most prominent houses, Tyra and Minamoto, the former hegemony of Fujiwara was broken.

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