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While searching for the reason why Danzo didn't get the Rinnegan, I want to ask if he actually knew the Rinnegan existed before the attack in Konoha? What are the evidences that support this fact?

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He should have known before the Konoha-attack. Years before, he worked together with Hanzo, who was attacked by Nagato using his Rinnegan. Back then, Danzo most likely came to know about the reason why his men got killed.

Source: Chapter 447

  • @debal - He possessed Shisui's Mangekyō Sharingan. He stole it from Shisui to get the power of Kotoamatsukami. – SudoRahul Nov 27 '13 at 11:08
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    @debal That wasn't the question. He just wanted to know whether he knew they existed, not whether he could awake them. – looper Nov 27 '13 at 11:10
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Its probably never mentioned that Danzo knew about the existence of rinnegan.
But, if he knew, there are various reasons why he didn't have it on his arms.

One reason could be -
According to the wiki:

The first person to possess the Rinnegan was the Sage of the Six Paths. Because of the Sage's mythical status, many people believed the Rinnegan was only a legend or a mutation

Secondly, In the whole series only Nagato (not to forget all other pain) was shown with Rinnegan and they were always hidden in their village so no one ever found out till they actually fought against jiraiya when the frogs who were with him found out.
That means there was least chance of Danzo knowing about Nagato.
This is not a perfect answer but I guess this is the only detail revealed.

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    The six paths of pain sported the Rinnegan because of Nagato's Six path technique. There weren't so many Rinnegans in reality. They were just an extension of Nagato. And also, its very likely that Danzo knew about it, but just that he did was not able to awaken it, because to awaken the Rinnegan, one needs to have both the Senju DNA and the Uhicha DNA. But Danzo only had the Senju DNA which he got by infusing Hashirama's cells. – SudoRahul Nov 27 '13 at 11:11
  • Very true!! :) I should've mentioned that also! – marmikshah Nov 27 '13 at 11:32

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