- First Ruler: Soga no Ishikawa
- Final Ruler: Soga no Emishi
- Dissolution: 645AD
- For a full list of Clans: See Japanese Clans.
Table of Contents
The Soga Clan (蘇我氏) was a very powerful clan in ancient Japan, orchestrating the placing of several rulers on the Imperial Throne.
Branching off from the Imperial line they came to political power during the reign of Emperor Buretsu (498-507AD) possibly by agreeing to a political bargain. By the reign of Emperor Senka (536-539AD) they had gained an influential hereditary place at court, as quartermasters and treasurers. Prior to Senka’s reign, the Emperor both ruled as well as reigned. However, during his reign, he established Iname Soga as his executive first Minister.
During the reign of Emperor Kinmei (539-71AD) Buddhism made its first appearance in the country. Kimmei asked Iname to try it out, but it led to a setback for Buddhism as a pestilence ensued in the country.
600AD to Destruction
The subsequent Empress Suiko (593-628AD) was also placed on the throne by Umako. She, however, placed her nephew as Crown Prince Shotoku Taisha who overshadowed Soga Clan power for the rest of Taisha’s life.1
It was during Kougyoku’s reign the Clan finally was destroyed after Iruka is killed in a coup d`etat in front of the Empress and Emishi, in their home, burnt it to the ground killing himself and all his attendants.1
This fire led to a large part of the Kujiki being destroyed. Part of it survived, now called the Kokuki (National Annals). Though whether this is part of the original document we don’t know.2
After their destruction
Members of the House
1. Martin, P. (1997) “The Chrysanthemum Throne” Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing Limited.
2. Aston. W.G. (1896) “Nihongi Volume 1: Chronicles of Japan from the Earliest Times to AD697”. Tuttle Publishing.
3. Yasumaro. O, translated by Gustav Heldt. (2014) “Kojiki. An Account of Ancient Matters”. New York: Columbia University Press.
4. Chamberlain, B. H. (1932) “Translation of the Kojiki.” Kobe: J.L. Thompson & Co.
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