Placemarking the Genpei War

I have a bachelor’s in Japanese history, and took a special interest in Heian-era Japanese history. I decided to put my expertise to use in this project and created a placemark series that marks the major battles of the Genpei War.

Two powerful rival clans, the Minamoto and the Taira, fought for control of the Emperor and thus control of all Japan. Conflict raged for five years, from 1180-1185, and the war is chronicled in an epic text, the Heike Monogatari. Many of the battles have been immortalized in movies, TV, kabuki and noh plays, and even video games.

The war ended when the Minamoto soundly defeated the Taira at the Battle of Dan-no-ura. The Minamoto leader, Yoritomo, became the first Shogun of Japan and established the precedent for Japanese rule for centuries to come. The Genpei War also set the stage for other aspects of Japanese warrior culture, including ritual suicide to keep from being captured by enemy forces.

Google MyMaps version of the map.

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