magatamaThe magatama is a very ancient emblem of Japanese identity. The original matagama were small, animal-tooth shaped amulets made of stone (usually jade), bone, or horn. These small ornaments appear in Japanese and Korean burial sites from around 1000 BCE, and might have served as status symbols.

According to Shinto legend, a necklace of magatama (Yasakani no Magatama ) was among the items hung outside the cave of the sun goddess Amaterasu, and is counted among the three ‘treasures’ of the Japanese imperial regalia:

Related Symbols:

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