The oldest collection of Japanese and Shinto mythology. The title means Records of Ancient Matters, and the project of collecting these records was begun by the Japanese emperor Temm u.Temmu reigned from 672686, and the collection was completed in 712 during the reign of the empress Gemmei. Although it contains versions of central Shinto myths, the Kojiki is not an account of religious belief or ritual and therefore not really comparable to the sacred texts of other religions.
The Kojiki is divided into three sections that, taken together, point to the divine nature of early Japanese rulers that Shinto has preached to varying degrees in its history. The first section includes myths such as those of the original Shinto gods Izanagi, Izanami, and Amaterasu, which give an account of the Creation of the earth and its creatures. The second tells the story of the founder of the Japanese imperial Yamato line, Jimmu Tenno in 660 B.C, while the third presents the genealogies of subsequent emperors up to the seventh century.
SEE ALSO: Izanagi and Izanami; Shinto.