Yamashiro Province

Yamashiro Province
Location of Yamashiro Province.

Yamashiro Province

Yamashiro Province (山城国) was an old Province of Japan, located in what is now Kyoto Prefecture.1 The Shinsen Shōjiroku shows the Haji Clan dwelt in this province amongst others.3


One of the 5 central (kinai) provinces, established under the Kokugun System in 646AD, this area was already settled in the 5th Century by the Hata Family and other naturalised Korean families (Kikajin).2

Legendary Period

During the reign of Emperor Sujin it is said that Ohobiko battles against Takehaniyasuhiko here.456

In Emperor Suinin’s reign it is said the Imperial Prince Hikoimasu married Yenahime in this province and that Matonuhime tried to kill herself by hanging from a tree. The area she did so becoming known as Sagariki (hanging tree).45

Additionally Suinin heard of and married Kanibatatobe whilst visiting here. Vowing to make her his wife he sees an omen in the form of a large tortoise in a river. The Emperor throwing his spear at the tortoise sees it turn into a white stone and following this he sends for Kanibatatobe and they are wed.6

Nara Period

Between 741-44AD this Province held the offical residence of Emperor Shōmu at Kuni no Miya in the southern part of Province. Yamashiro became the site of the capital when Nagaokakyō was made in 784. Ten years later the capital moved to again Heiankyo (Kyoto), still in this Province. The province remained the govermental seat until the 1868 Meiji Restoration.2


After the Meiji Reformation this province became Kyoto and Yodo Prefectures, however thry were consolidated in Kyoto Prefecture on November 22 1871.2


1. Louis Frederic, translated by Kathe Roth (2002) “Japan Encyclopedia”. London: Harvard University Press.
2. Kodansha. (1993) ”Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia”. Tokyo: Kodansha Ltd.
3. Borgen, R. (1975) “The Origins of the Sugawara. A History of the Haji Family”. Monumenta Nipponica. Vol.30 No.4 pp.405-422
4. Yasumaro. O, translated by Gustav Heldt. (2014) “Kojiki. An Account of Ancient Matters”. New York: Columbia University Press.
5. Chamberlain, B. H. (1932) “Translation of the Kojiki.” Kobe: J.L. Thompson & Co.
6. Aston. W.G. (1896) “Nihongi Volume 1: Chronicles of Japan from the Earliest Times to AD697”. Tuttle Publishing.

Former Provinces of Japan
KinaiIzumi * Kawachi * Settsu * Yamashiro * Yamato
TōsandōDewa * Hida * Kōzuke * Mino * Mutsu * Omi * Shimotsuke * Shinano
HokurikudōEchigo * Echizen * Etchū * Kaga * Koshi * Wakasa
San’indōHōki * Inaba * Izumo * Tajima * Tamba * Tango
TōkaidōIse * Kai * Kazusa * Mikawa * Owari * Sagami * Shimōsa * Suruga * Tōtōmi
NankaidōAwa * Iyo * Kii * Sanuki * Tosa
San’yōdōAki * Harima * Mimasaka
SaikaidaōBungo * Chikuzen * Hizen * Hyūga * Iki * Tsushima
Pre-Taihō CodeKibi

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