Later Prehistoric Norfolk Project

The Later Prehistoric Norfolk Project (LPNP) is a continuation of Global Perspectives on British Archaeology. It aims to place Norfolk’s prehistoric archaeology in an international context and at the same time explore the potential of archaeological projects to contribute to their participants’ health and well-being.  We will be working with Japanese colleagues and discussing the […]

The Origins of Agriculture in Japan

Setting the Appearance of Rice Agriculture in the Archipelago in a Global Context In March 2012 an international conference was held at Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto, examining one of the most significant transitions in Japanese history: the adoption of wet rice farming, which marks the shift from the Jomon to Yayoi periods between 3000 and 2500 […]

Cultural Properties Loss

Japan is prone to natural disasters, including volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, tsunami, landslides and floods. Inspired by the ‘Bunkazai Rescue’ programme initiated by the Agency for Cultural Affairs and the Nara National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, the Centre has been monitoring the impact on cultural properties and archaeology of the region affected by the devastating […]

Medieval Towns of Japan and Europe

In recent years, major new archaeological discoveries have redefined the development of towns and cities in the Japanese archipelago. The uncovering of the plans of major port towns such as Sakai, Kusado Sengen and Ichijōdani, and the revealing of early phases in the development of cities such as Kamakura and Hakata provide an important new […]

Shinano-Chikuma River Project

The Shinano-Chikuma River project is investigating the development of historic landscapes along the longest river drainage in Japan. This interdisciplinary and international project includes involvement in the excavation of the Middle Jomon Sanka site in Nagaoka, Niigata Prefecture, and the use of a range of archaeological and geographical techniques to reconstruct aspects of this remarkable […]

Online Resource for Japanese Archaeology and Cultural Heritage

The goal of encouraging new generations to take an interest in the wonders of Japanese archaeology and cultural heritage is the inspiration of this unique fully illustrated and interactive online resource. Aimed at secondary school teachers and students, ORJACH comes complete with teachers’ notes and model lesson plans, but is proving to be of interest […]

Kofun period

From the 3rd to the 7th centuries AD, important people in Japan were buried in mounded tombs, accompanied by elaborate ‘grave goods’. Many of these tombs, or ‘kofun’ remain as striking monuments in the Japanese landscape, and include some of the largest funerary structures of the ancient world. A proportion of these tombs, designated as […]

Globalising British Archaeology Through a Japanese Lens

British and Japanese archaeology have had close connections since the late 19th century, when pioneering Japanese archaeologists such as Tsuboi Shogoro and Hamada Kosaku studied in London, and William Gowland and Neil Gordon Munro were among the first westerners to investigate archaeological sites in Japan. We regularly welcome students and specialists in Japanese archaeology from […]

Okinoshima: The Shosoin of the Sea

A new volume, Okinoshima: the outstanding value of Japan’s sacred heritage – a World Heritage nomination by Simon Kaner, Natasha Hutcheson, Andrew Hutcheson and Nishitani Tadashi will be published by Springer Briefs in 2021. The tiny island of Okinoshima is considered to enshrine the Munakata deities, three sisters who control the Genkai Sea between Kyushu […]

World Heritage

Divergent heritages: UNESCO and the cultural heritage of landscapes in the UK compared with Japan Inscription of a place on the UNESCO World Heritage List is a long and arduous process. Why would anyone in a particular location wish to set out on this path? This project is examining approaches to promoting cultural landscapes in […]

Yayoi vs Iron Age

By later prehistory both Japan and Britain had become complex in terms of their settlement structures and the range of material culture being routinely deposited in some locations. Often in both situations there has been an assumption that the monumentality and the defended nature of some settlements indicates increasing inequality and, in particular, concentration of […]

Project Jomon

Online Jomon Matsuri The year 2022 marks 145 years since archaeologist Edward Sylvester Morse named the pottery sherds he found at the Omori shell mound between Tokyo and Yokohama as ‘Jōmon’, or ‘cord-marked’. These distinctive decorations impressed upon the pottery came to define a near 10,000 year span of prehistoric human settlement across the Japanese […]

Nara to Norwich: Art and belief at the extremities of the Silk Roads, 500-1100

Visit Nara to Norwich Online Exhibition. How do religions change and adapt – and in turn effect change and adaptation – in the context of encounters with different traditions of the sacred, belief, cult, and ritual practice? Nara to Norwich: Art and belief at the extremities of the Silk Roads AD 500–1100 is exploring the […]

The Archaeology of Ritual and Religion

Inspired by the exceptional Japanese religious art works in the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts at the University of East Anglia, we have developed a number of initiatives in the area of the archaeology of religion and ritual. One highlight was a special conference at the Society of Antiquaries of London with archaeologists from Kokugakuin […]