(710-794). The period during which the seat of government was located at Heijō-kyō (now the city of Nara, in Nara Prefecture). The period was characterized by the full implementation of the ritsuryō (centralized autocracy) system; the establishment of Buddhism as the religion of the court and the state; and new heights in intellectual and cultural achievements, as exemplified in the building of the Great Hall of Todaiji temple. (adapted from Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia. Tokyo: Kodansha, 1993)
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