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Kofun Groups of Southern Kyushu Kofun Groups of Southern Kyushu

Photo by Kaz Kuroki


Mochida Kofun Group

Mochida Kofun Group

Mochida Kofun Group
( Photo by Takanabe Town Board of Education )

 Mochida Kofun Group is located at an elevation of around 50 m on a plateau on the left bank of the Omaru River, north of present day Takanabe Town, Koyu District, extending approximately 0.8 km east-west and 1 km north-south. There are a total of 85 extant mounds, including 9 keyhole-shaped burial mounds, 1 scallop-shaped burial mound, and 75 circular burial mounds. When including those mounds that have since disappeared, this burial mound group is conjectured to have consisted of more than 90 mounds.
 The construction of kofun in this group appears to have continued steadily without any major periods of inactivity, with mounds having being constructed over the long-term on an ongoing basis from the first half of the 4th century (Early Kofun) until the first half of the 7th century (Final Kofun). During the first half of the 4th century/mid-4th century, the large keyhole-shaped burial mounds Mound No.48 (mound length: approx. 85 m) and Mound No.1 (Hakarizuka; mound length: 120 m) were built here. Mound No.1 (Hakarizuka), which dates to the mid-4th century, is thought to have been a keyhole-shaped burial mound belonging to the ruler of one of the largest clan confederacies in Kyushu at the time.

Beast-Band Bronze Mirrors from Mochida Mound №1

Beast-Band Bronze Mirror from Mochida Mound No.1

 Mochida Kofun Group met with catastrophe during the early Showa period, when it suffered from large-scale looting. However, the whereabouts of most of the looted artefacts was ascertained through subsequent investigations, which have provided major contributions to helping unravel the nature of this burial mound group. The many artefacts excavated here include a series of ancient decorative bronze mirrors featuring gods or animals (some of which have been designated as Important Cultural Properties), a gilt harness, and ornamented swords. Many of these artefacts are strongly suggestive of relations with Kinai and the Korean Peninsula, showing how the Sea of Hyuga flourished as a sea route for interaction between clan heads.
 Mochida Kofun Group was designated as a National Historical Site in 1961.

Location Onigakubo Mochida Ooaza, Takanabe Town, Koyu District, etc.
Access Train Take a bus or taxi from Miyazaki Station on the JR Nippo-Main Line (15 min.)
Bus Take a Miyazaki Kotsu bus from Takanabe Bus Center bound for Tsuno/Hyuga
Get off at “Sakamoto” or “Onigakubo” and walk for 10 min.
Car Exit at Takanabe IC on the Higashikyushu Expressway and continue for approx. 5 min.
Inquiries Social Education Division, Takanabe Town Board of Education Tel: 0983-23-3326

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