Kobe, Kōbe-shi) is the capital city of Hyōgo Prefecture and a prominent port city in Japan with a population of about 1.4 million. The city is located in the Kansai region of Japan and is part of the Osaka-Kobe-Kyoto metropolitan area. Kobe is classified as one of Japan's seventeen designated cities. ---------------------------- Originally known by the name Ōwada Anchorage (Ōwada-no-tomari), earliest written records regarding the region come from the Nihon Shoki, which describes the founding of the Ikuta Shrine by Empress Jingū in 201 A.D.For most of its history the area was never a single political entity, even during the Tokugawa Period, when the port was controlled directly by the Tokugawa Shogunate. Kobe did not exist in its current form until its founding in 1889. Its name comes from "kanbe" , kanbe), an archaic title for supporters of the city's Ikuta Shrine.Kobe became one of Japan's designated cities in 1956.