Photo: Japanese Royal Tomb Opened to Scholars for First Time



The keyhole-shaped kofun tomb of Japan's Emperor Nintoku lies nestled in the bustling seaport of Sakai in an undated aerial photo. The fifth-century tomb is the largest in Japan.

Recently archaeologists were allowed inside the kofun tomb of Empress Jingu—the first time that scholars had been permitted inside a Japanese royal tomb outside of an official excavation. The rare visit offers experts hope that other closely guarded graves, including Nintoku's, might soon be open to independent study.

Photograph by Yoichi Tsukioka/Getty Images


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