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Richû is the name given to the 17th emperor of Japan in the Kojiki and the Nihon Shoki, and is reported to have reigned from AD 400-405. Richu is largely a mythical character, and nothing can be said with any certainty about his life or reign. Richu is often listed as the first emperor of the Yamato Period in Japanese history, but this is a rather arbitrary excercise in linking alleged reign dates with an archaeological concept.

The Nihon Shoki reports that Richu was the first son of Emperor Nintoku, and recounts a story about Richu relaxing with his wife on a boat in a pond, in what is considered the earliest known reference to a Japanese Garden. Misanzai Kofun in Sakai city south of Osaka is traditionally held to be Richu's tomb, but this has never been coroborrated by any physical evidence and the tomb has never been excavated.


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