The first people to migrate into the islands of Japan probably arrived around 8000 B.C. These hunter-gathers probably lived in temporary huts, as well as in caves and ravines. For thousands of years, the people of Japan lived off of the land, hunted, farmed, and developed unique cultures and religious beliefs within their small clans or tribes.
Around 200 B.C., invaders from the Asian mainland entered Japan. Using their superior technology and weapons, these newcomers were easily able to defeat and conquer the peoples of these islands.
These newcomers intermarried with the islanders, and over a period of many generations helped raise their standard of living, teaching them new methods for farming, and new technologies, including the use of both bronze and iron.
Around 250 A.D., another wave of invaders entered Japan from the Asian mainland. These invaders had mastered the use of horses in battle, and their warriors were again able to quickly conquer the islanders.
It is believed by many historians that these warriors would eventually become the ruling class in Japan.