Yamatohiko (倭彦命) was the half-brother of Emperor Suinin.

It is said that when Suinin’s wife, Empress Hibasuhime died he asked what should be done, his ministers saying they should follow the old traditions of burying retainers alongside her as had been done upon the death of Yamatohiko.

A man known as Nomi no Sukune, however, stated that this form of sacrifice was contrary to a benevolent government, and so he devised the Haniwa which came to replace the act of human sacrifice.1


1. Borgen, R. (1975) “The Origins of the Sugawara. A History of the Haji Family”. Monumenta Nipponica. Vol.30 No.4 pp.405-422

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