Nara (710-794) The new capital at Nara was modeled on the Chinese imperial capital of Chang-an. Day 11 in Japan: A popular daytrip from Kyoto is Japan’s other ancient capital of Nara. It had an imperial palace in the north, and residences, and temples and markets to the south. When Emperor Kanmu moved the capital to Heian-kyō (), which remained the imperial capital for the next 1,000 years, he did so not only to strengthen imperial authority but also to improve his seat of government geopolitically.Nara was abandoned after only 70 years in part due to the ascendancy of Dōkyō and the encroaching secular power of the Buddhist institutions there. Divine and I had a lot of plans for that day and we wanted to visit this city in half a day. Before the Taihō Code was established, the capital was customarily moved after the death of an emperor because of the ancient belief that a place of death was polluted. Reforms and bureaucratization of government led to the establishment of a permanent imperial capital at Heijokyo, or Nara, in A.D. 710. Japan’s first imperial capital, Nara retains an astonishing collection of some of the country’s most important buildings, temples, and treasures. Combine it with a trip to nearby Kyoto to get a comprehensive view of Japanese history. In AD 710, Nara was established as Japan’s first imperial capital. Japan's imperial capital of Nara (710-794) is the home to some of the country's most iconic architectural monuments, including the Nanto Shichi Daiji, the seven Buddhist shrines that date back to the introduction of that faith to Japan. NARA : THE OLD IMPERIAL CAPITAL OF JAPAN by NORMAN J. JOHNSTON Although it is some twelve centuries since Nara, then known as Heijo, was the Imperial capital of Japan, yet plans can still be traced and temples still exist The capital at Nara, which gave its name to the new period (710-94), was styled after the grand Chinese Tang Dynasty (618-907) capital at Chang'an and was the first truly urban center in Japan. At its height it had perhaps 200,000 people living and working along broad streets laid out on a north-south axis. In the eighth century, the capital of Imperial Japan was moved to Nara and the country was ruled from there for just 74 years before it was again moved away. Posted on September 25, 2016 by jaydel123. 1. Nara: Japan’s Other Imperial Capital. In the year 710, the first permanent Japanese capital was established in Nara, a city modelled after the Chinese capital.Large Buddhist monasteries were built in the new capital. The JR Nara line runs between Kyoto and Nara, the two former Imperial capitals of Japan. 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