The period in Japanese history
Also known as the Tokugawa era, this was a time when the entire country was united. Under a police state.
Since the Kamakura era the country had been divided into warring factions. Finally Tokugawa Ieyasu was the last daimyo with the force to crush opposition.
The capital was moved from Heiankyo to Edo, a new city built on the marshes. Heiankyo became known as Kyoto and Edo is now known as Tokyo.
This was a period of peace, enforced by banning of the gun, the execution of Christians, the sealing off of the country from Western influences, and tight controls placed on the daimyo.
This was also a period in which the middle class and the townsmen began to flourish. Art forms particular to their tastes such as mass produced wood block prints and Kabuki theatre arose.