Emperor Seinei (清寧天皇)

Emperor Seinei (c. 444 - February 27, 484), who reigned from February 11, 480, to February 27, 484, was the twenty-second Emperor of Japan. His name was Shiraka no Miko (Imperial Prince Shiraka). His Japanese-style posthumous name was Shiraka no Takehirokuni oshiwaka yamato neko no Sumeramikoto (emperor), and alternatively, Shiraga oyamato neko no Mikoto, according to "Kojiki" (literally, The Records of Ancient Matters).


Emperor Seinei was the third son (imperial prince) of Emperor Yuryaku. His mother was KATSURAGI no Karahime.

He had no consorts, hence no princes and princesses.

Imperial Palace
It was Iware no Mikakuri no Miya Palace in the capital (which was reportedly located at Mizushi-jinja Shrine in Higashi-ikejiri-cho, Kashihara City, Nara Prefecture).

Emperor Seinei was born with white hair, which awed his father Emperor Yuryaku into appoint Seinei as Crown Prince. Therefore, Emperor Seinei may possibly have been an albino (suffering from congenital leukopathia or congenital achromia).

In September, 479, Emperor Yuryaku demised. Since Hoshikawa no Miko, whose mother was from the Kibi clan, occupied Okura (imperial storehouse) while hiding behind his powerful maternal family, the Emperor Seinei ordered OTOMO no Muroya and YAMATONOAYA no Ataitsuka to burn Hoshikawa no Miko to death. He ascended to the imperial throne on New Year's day in 480.

Emperor Seinei was worried about having no children. However, in 481, he obtained information that Oke no Mikoto (which was written as "億計王" in Japanese, who was the future Emperor Ninken) and his younger brother Oke no Mikoto (which was written as "弘計王" in Japanese, who was the future Emperor Kenzo), who were both sons of Ichinohe (or Ichinobe) no Oshiha no Miko, were discovered in Harima, thereby sending an envoy to Akashi to fetch them. In 482, Emperor Seinei welcomed the two brothers into the imperial court and designated the older Oke no Mikoto ("億計王") as Crown Prince and the younger Oke no Mikoto ("弘計王") as an imperial prince, respectively.

Emperor Seinei demised on New Year's day in 484. His age at death was 41 according to ''Mizu-Kagami'' (literally, The Water Mirror) or 39 according to ''Jinno shotoki'' (literally, Record of the Legitimate Succession of the Divine Emperors).

Imperial Tomb and Mausoleum
Emperor Seinei's body was buried in Kawachi no sakato no hara no misasagi Mausoleum. The mausoleum is identified as Nishiura Shiraga-yama kofun Tumulus (a keyhole-shaped mound of 112 meters in the total length) which is located in 6-chome, Nishiura, Habikino City, Osaka Prefecture.

[Original Japanese]