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Paekche

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  • Japanese: 百済 (Kudara)

Paekche was one of the Three Kingdoms which reigned on the Korean peninsula in the 1st century BCE through the 7th century CE.

Buddhism was first introduced into Paekche in 384.

The Kojiki and Nihon shoki suggest that it may have been via individuals from Paekche such as Wani that the Analects of Confucius and certain other key classical documents were introduced into the Japanese islands sometime in the 3rd to 6th centuries. In addition, notable treasures of the early Yamato court, including bronze mirrors and other bronze goods, were often gifts from the kings or other prominent individuals from Paekche.

Buddhism is also believed to have been introduced into Japan via Paekche, in or around the 6th century. Around that same time, Paekche allied with the neighboring kingdom of Silla to attack and conquer the nearby Gaya Confederacy. However, by the mid-7th century, Silla had turned on Paekche and sought to conquer the entire peninsula; Paekche then allied itself with the Yamato state, but was ultimately unsuccessful, falling to Silla invasion by 668. A number of people from Paekche meanwhile settled in the Japanese islands in and around the 660s. Some of them, or their immediate descendants, became influential figures in the spread of Buddhism in Japan, or in other arenas; the monk Gyôki was one such figure.

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