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History of Japan Through Anime

A list of shows that are based on historical events that took place in Japan or are set in a specific era in Japanese history. Fantasies are included. Sorted in chronological order.
1 The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

794-, some time during the Heian era

Fantasy, based on literature written during this period 

2 Genji Monogatari Sennenki

Genji Monogatari Sennenki

11th century, Heian era

Based on literature written during this period 

3 Kurozuka


12th century, Kamakura period 

4 Shoka


Shōka Era Japan. After Kōgen and before Shōgen. This period spanned the years from March 1257 to March 1259, Kamakura period.

5 Angolmois: Record of Mongol Invasion

Angolmois: Record of Mongol Invasion

1274, the Mongol invasion, Kamakura era

6 Utakoi


Early 14th century, Kamakura period

Based on classical poems compiled during this period

7 Princess Mononoke

Princess Mononoke

Late Muromachi period of Japan (approximately 1336 to 1573 CE), with fantasy elements.

8 Dororo (2019)

Dororo (2019)

15th century, Sengoku period

9 Asura


Mid-15th century Kyoto ravaged by successive waves of floods, drought, and famine...

10 Sengoku Basara: Samurai Kings

Sengoku Basara: Samurai Kings

16th century, Sengoku period

11 Kochoki


16th century, Sengoku period 

12 Nobunaga Concerto

Nobunaga Concerto

16th century, Sengoku period

13 Ninja Girl & Samurai Master

Ninja Girl & Samurai Master

16th century, Sengoku period 

14 Hyouge Mono

Hyouge Mono

16th century, Sengoku period 

15 Gifuu Doudou!! Kanetsugu to Keiji

Gifuu Doudou!! Kanetsugu to Keiji

16th-17th century, Sengoku period

16 InuYasha


Some time during the Sengoku period

17 Basilisk


17th century, Edo era

18 Shigurui: Death Frenzy

Shigurui: Death Frenzy

17th century, Edo era

19 Onihei


18th century, Edo period 

20 House of Five Leaves

House of Five Leaves

Some time during the Edo era

21 Samurai Champloo

Samurai Champloo

Some time during the Edo era

22 Blade of the Immortal (2019)

Blade of the Immortal (2019)

Some time during the Edo era

23 Requiem from the Darkness

Requiem from the Darkness

19th century, some time during the Edo era

24 Oh! Edo Rocket

Oh! Edo Rocket

Edo in 1842, the thirteenth year of the Tenpō era.

25 Katanagatari


Edo-era Japan

26 Mononoke


Mostly Edo period, featuring ukiyoe art, but episodes that feature trains are set in the Taishou era.

27 Ninja Scroll

Ninja Scroll

Edo period

28 Gintama


Some time during the Edo period 

29 We Rent Tsukumogami

We Rent Tsukumogami

Some time during the Edo era 

30 Miss Hokusai

Miss Hokusai

19th century, latter half of Edo period 

31 Mushishi


Set in an imaginary time between the Edo and Meiji periods, featuring some 19th-century technology but with Japan still as a 'closed country'.

32 Hakuouki: Demon of the Fleeting Blossom

Hakuouki: Demon of the Fleeting Blossom

1863–, pre Meiji restoration, Bakumatsu, Edo period

33 Peace Maker Kurogane

Peace Maker Kurogane

1863-, pre Meiji restoration, bakumatsu, Edo period 

34 Intrigue in the Bakumatsu: Irohanihoheto

Intrigue in the Bakumatsu: Irohanihoheto

Bakumatsu, Edo period 

35 Rurouni Kenshin

Rurouni Kenshin

Latter half of 19th Century, Meiji era, post Meiji restoration 

36 Golden Kamuy

Golden Kamuy

Early 20th century, post Russo-Japanese war, Meiji era

37 Meiji Tokyo Renka

Meiji Tokyo Renka

Time slip to Meiji era

38 Woodpecker Detective's Office

Woodpecker Detective's Office

End of Meiji era, early 20th century 

39 Otome Youkai Zakuro

Otome Youkai Zakuro

Some time during the Meiji/Taishou era

40 Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

1912- Some time during the Taishou era

41 Haikara-San: Here Comes Miss Modern Part 1

Haikara-San: Here Comes Miss Modern Part 1

Taishou era of 1918, about women's rights & emancipation.

42 Sakura Wars TV

Sakura Wars TV

Fantasy reminiscent of the Taishou era.

43 Aoi Bungaku Series

Aoi Bungaku Series

1929, pre WW2, Shouwa era (Episodes 1-4: No Longer Human)

1950, post WW2, Shouwa era (Episodes 9-10: Run Melos)

44 Joker Game

Joker Game

1937, pre WW2, Shouwa era

45 Shashinkan


Pre WW2

46 The Wind Rises

The Wind Rises

WW2, Shouwa era

47 The Cockpit

The Cockpit


48 Giovanni's Island

Giovanni's Island

On the island of Shikotan, weeks before the end of World War II, 1945.

49 Grave of the Fireflies

Grave of the Fireflies

WW2, Shouwa era

50 Barefoot Gen

Barefoot Gen



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Halex Sep 2, 2020

Great List! You always create very interesting lists. Some contributions: