Pre-modern Japan

Japan is one of Asia's oldest civilizations. While the Japanese archipelago was settled in 50,000 BC, classical Japan was founded in AD 538.

For most countries, the line between pre-modern and modern history is difficult to draw. Not so for Japan; the country was virtually isolated from the outer world until the Black Ships Incident in 1853, which opened the country for commerce. With extensive social reforms, leading up to the Meiji Restoration in 1868, Japan became the first non-Western nation to industrialize.


See also

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