Yamato(redirected from Yamato prefecture)
a tribal alliance formed in Japan in the second half of the third century A.D., with its center in the vicinity of what is now the city of Nara. By the mid-fourth century, Yamato had united under its rule the greater part of the country and had partially pacified the Kumaso and Ebisu tribes. Based on the Yamato tribal alliance, an early feudal state gradually emerged in Japan.
The term “Yamato” is also commonly used to refer to an archaeological culture of the early Iron Age. Also known as the Tumulus culture, the Yamato culture existed from the end of the third century through the sixth century A.D.; it corresponded approximately to the Asuka historical period. In archaeological terms, the Yamato culture represented a further development of a late stage of the Yayoi culture.