November 27, 2022

Forbidden Secrets of Ancient Japanese Tombs Revealed Thanks to Satellite Images

There are no written sources on these tombs, and excavations are limited and rare to the smaller ones, because the largest are thought about the burial places of the first semi-legendary emperors and, as such, are strictly protected by law. For these factors, it is impossible to get precise measurements of height, orientation and size.
This is what Norma Baratta, Arianna Picotti and Giulio Magli of the Politecnico di Milano did, with the aim of deepening the knowledge of the relationships in between these remarkable monuments with the landscape and, in particular, with the sky. The team measured the orientation of more than 100 Kofuns and came to intriguing conclusions.
The results– simply published in the clinical journal “Remote Sensing”– suggest a strong connection of the Kofun entrance corridors with the arc in the sky where the Sun and the Moon show up every day of the year, and show the orientation of the hugest keyhole-shaped Kofuns to the arc of the Sun rising/shining. In particular, the Daisen Kofun is oriented towards the Sun increasing at the winter season solstice.
Orientation of the imperial tombs towards the Sun does not happen by possibility: rather, it is in full contract with the Japanese royal custom. The legendary origin of the dynasty of the Japanese Emperors considers them as direct descendants of the Sun Goddess Amaterasu.
Referral: “The Orientation of the Kofun Tombs” by Norma Camilla Baratta, Giulio Magli and Arianna Picotti, 14 January 2022, Remote Sensing.DOI: 10.3390/ rs14020377.

Daisen Kofun, birds-eye view. Credit: © Ministry of Territory, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, under kind permission
A research group at the Politecnico di Milano evaluated the orientation of ancient Japanese tombs– the so-called Kofun. This research study has never been performed previously.
A research group at the Politecnico di Milano analyzed the orientation of ancient Japanese tombs– the so-called Kofun. The outcomes reveal that these tombs are oriented towards the arc of the increasing sun, the Goddess Amaterasu that the Japanese emperors linked to the legendary origin of their dynasty.
The Japanese islands are dotted with hundreds of ancient burial mounds, the biggest of which are in the typical shape of a keyhole and are called Kofun. Developed in between the third and the seventh centuries AD, the most enforcing are credited to the semi-legendary first emperors, while the smaller sized ones most likely come from court officers and to members of the royal family. Among these, the so-called Daisen Kofun is one of the biggest monuments ever built on Earth: it determines 486 meters in length and about 36 in height. It is generally associated to Emperor Nintoku, the sixteenth emperor of Japan. The Daisen Kofun belongs to a group of burial places just recently inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

A research group at the Politecnico di Milano examined the orientation of ancient Japanese burial places– the so-called Kofun. The Japanese islands are dotted with hundreds of ancient burial mounds, the biggest of which are in the typical shape of a keyhole and are called Kofun. Amongst these, the so-called Daisen Kofun is one of the biggest monoliths ever built on Earth: it measures 486 meters in length and about 36 in height. The Daisen Kofun belongs to a group of burial places just recently inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

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