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Tenpyō (天平), also romanized as Tempyō, was a Japanese era name (年号, nengō, , lit. "year name") after Jinki and before Tenpyō-kanpō. This period started in August 729 and ended in April 749. The reigning emperor was Shōmu-tennō (聖武天皇).
Events of the Tenpyō era
- 740 (Tenpyō 12, 10th month): The forces of Fujiwara no Hirotsugu are defeated in Hizen Province on the island of Kyushu.
- 740 (Tenpyō 12): Japan's capital city is established in Kuni-kyō.
- 741 (Tenpyō 13): The Emperor establishes Buddhist temples in the provinces of Japan. Provincial monasteries were built.
- 743 (Tenpyō 15): The Emperor orders creation of a huge statue of the Buddha (daibutsu) which will be part of Tōdai-ji, Nara.
- 744 (Tenpyō 16): Naniwa-kyō became Japan's capital.
- 745 (Tenpyō 17): The capital returns to Heijō-kyō.
- 749 (Tenpyō 20, 4th month): Former-Empress Genshō died.
- 749 (Tenpyō 20): After a 25-year reign, Emperor Shōmu abdicated and took vows as a Buddhist priest. Shōmu's daughter receives the succession (senso). Soon after, Empress Kōken's role as monarch was confirmed (sokui).
Ground-plan of Heijō-kyō
- Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Tempyō" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 957.
- Nussbaum, "Shōmu Tennō," p. 884; Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, pp. 67-73; Brown, Delmer et al. (1979). Gukanshō, pp. 272-273; Varley, H. Paul. Jinnō Shōtōki, pp. 141-143.
- Titsingh, p. 71.
- Titsingh, p. 71; 恭仁宮跡の発掘調査 (Excavations on the Kuni Palace site, Kyoto Prefectural Board of Education); retrieved 2012-5-4.
- Varley, pp. 141-142.
- Brown, p. 273; Varley, p. 141.
- Titsingh, p. 72.
- Titsingh, p. 71; Varley, p. 141; Imperial Household Agency (Kunaichō), 元正天皇 (44); retrieved 2012-5-22.
- Varley, p. 143; Shomu was the first emperor to become a Buddhist priest; and Empress Komyo was the first empress to became a Buddhist nun.
- Titsingh, p. 73; Varley, p. 44; a distinct act of senso is unrecognized prior to Emperor Tenji; and all sovereigns except Jitō, Yōzei, Go-Toba, and Fushimi have senso and sokui in the same year until the reign of Emperor Go-Murakami. Compare Kunaichō, Ceremony of Accession (Sokui-no-Rei); retrieved 2012-5-22.
- National Diet Library, "The Japanese Calendar" -- historical overview plus illustrative images from library's collection
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