Ashikaga Yoshitane

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Ashikaga Yoshitane Ashikaga Yoshitane statue.jpg
Ashikaga Yoshitane

Ashikaga Yoshitane(足利 義稙, September 9, 1466 – May 23, 1523), also known as Ashikaga Yoshiki (足利 義材), was the 10th shōgun of the Ashikaga shogunate who headed the shogunate first from 1490 to 1493 [1] and then again from 1508 to 1521 during the Muromachi period of Japan. [2]

<i>Shōgun</i> de facto military dictator of feudal Japan (1185-1868)

The Shōgun was the military dictator of Japan during the period from 1185 to 1868. The shogunate was their administration or government. In most of this period, the shōguns were the de facto rulers of the country, although nominally they were appointed by the Emperor as a ceremonial formality. The shōguns held almost absolute power over territories through military means. Nevertheless, an unusual situation occurred in the Kamakura period (1199–1333) upon the death of the first shōgun, whereby the Hōjō clan's hereditary titles of shikken (1199–1256) and tokusō (1256–1333) dominated the shogunate as dictatorial positions, collectively known as the Regent Rule (執権政治). The shōguns during this 134-year period met the same fate as the Emperor and were reduced to figurehead status until a coup d'état in 1333, when the shōgun was restored to power in the name of the Emperor.

The Ashikaga shogunate, also known as the Muromachi shogunate, was a dynasty originating from one of the plethora of Japanese daimyō which governed Japan from 1338 to 1573, the year in which Oda Nobunaga deposed Ashikaga Yoshiaki. The heads of government were the shōgun. Each was a member of the Ashikaga clan.

Muromachi period division of Japanese history running from approximately 1336 to 1573

The Muromachi period is a division of Japanese history running from approximately 1336 to 1573. The period marks the governance of the Muromachi or Ashikaga shogunate, which was officially established in 1338 by the first Muromachi shōgun, Ashikaga Takauji, two years after the brief Kenmu Restoration (1333–36) of imperial rule was brought to a close. The period ended in 1573 when the 15th and last shogun of this line, Ashikaga Yoshiaki, was driven out of the capital in Kyoto by Oda Nobunaga.


Yoshitane was the son of Ashikaga Yoshimi and grandson of the sixth shōgun Ashikaga Yoshinori. In his early life, he was named Yoshiki (sometimes translated as Yoshimura), and then Yoshitada [3] including the period of when he is first installed as shōgun; however, he changed his name to Yoshitane in 1501 in a period when he was temporarily exiled, and it is by this name that he is generally known today. [4]

Ashikaga Yoshimi was the brother of Shōgun Ashikaga Yoshimasa, and a rival for the succession in a dispute that would lead to the Ōnin War.

Ashikaga Yoshinori 6th shogun of the Ashikaga shogunate

Ashikaga Yoshinori was the sixth shōgun of the Ashikaga shogunate who reigned from 1429 to 1441 during the Muromachi period of Japan. Yoshinori was the son of the third shōgun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu. His childhood name was Harutora (春寅).

The 9th shōgun Ashikaga Yoshihisa died in 1489 on a battlefield of southern Ōmi Province. Yoshihisa left no heir; and Yoshitane became Sei-i Taishōgun a year later. [5]

Ashikaga Yoshihisa 9th shogun of the Ashikaga shogunate

Ashikaga Yoshihisa was the 9th shōgun of the Ashikaga shogunate who reigned from 1473 to 1489 during the Muromachi period of Japan. Yoshihisa was the son of the eighth shōgun Ashikaga Yoshimasa with his wife Hino Tomiko.

Ōmi Province province of Japan

Ōmi Province is an old province of Japan, which today comprises Shiga Prefecture. It was one of the provinces that made up the Tōsandō circuit. Its nickname is Gōshū (江州).


Ashikaga Yoshitsuna was a Japanese samurai of the Ashikaga clan during the Sengoku period of Japan's history.

Events of Yoshitane's bakufu

Significant events which shaped the period during which Yoshitane was shōgun: [3]

Hōjō Sōun Japanese daimyo of the early Sengoku period

Hōjō Sōun was the first head of the Later Hōjō clan, one of the major powers in Japan's Sengoku period. Born Ise Moritoki, he was originally known as Ise Shinkurō (新九郎), a samurai of Taira lineage from a reputable family of shogunate officials. Although he only belonged to a side branch of the main, more prestigious Ise family, he fought his way up, gaining territory and changing his name in imitation of the illustrious Hōjō.

Izu Province province of Japan

Izu Province was a province of Japan in the area of Shizuoka Prefecture. Izu bordered on Sagami and Suruga Provinces. Its abbreviated form name was Zushū (豆州).

Emperor Go-Kashiwabara was the 104th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. He reigned from November 16, 1500, to May 19, 1526. His personal name was Katsuhito (勝仁). His reign marked the nadir of Imperial authority during the Ashikaga shogunate.

In 1493, Yoshitane lost in a power struggle against Hosokawa Masamoto and was formally replaced by the eleventh shōgun, Ashikaga Yoshizumi. [6]

In 1508, with the support of Ōuchi Yoshioki, Yoshitane regained the position of Sei-i Taishōgun from Yoshizumi. [7]

Eventually, after a further power struggle with the Hosokawa clan and Hosokawa Takakuni, Yoshitane was forced to withdraw to Awaji Island. He died in Awa province, on the island of Shikoku. [8]

Hosokawa Takakuni arranged for the replacement of Yoshitane with the twelfth shōgun, Ashikaga Yoshiharu. [8]

Yoshitane's heirs and successors

Shōgun Yoshitane adopted the son of Yoshizumi who was his cousin, Ashikaga Yoshitsuna and he designated Yoshitsuna as his heir and as his anticipated successor as shogun. [9] However, when Yoshitane died prematurely, he was not succeeded by who he had chosen; rather, his father's newly designated heir was accepted by the shogunate as shōgun Yoshizumi. [10]

In other words, after the death of his son, shōgun Yoshimasa adopted the son of his brother, Yoshimi. After the death of his adopted son, Yoshimasa adopted the son of another brother, Masatomo. Shogun Yoshimasa was succeeded by shōgun Yoshihisa (Yoshimasa's natural son), then by shōgun Yoshitane (Yoshimasa's first adopted son), and then by shōgun Yoshizumi (Yoshimasa's second adopted son). Yoshizumi's progeny would become shōguns in due course. [10]

Eventually, the great-grandson of Yoshitane would be installed as a puppet shōgun for a brief period, but external power struggles would unseat him, and the Ashikaga dynasty of shōguns would end. [10]

Eras of Yoshitane's bakufu

The years in which Yoshitane was shogun are more specifically identified by more than one era name or nengō . [11]


  1. Titsigh, Issac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, p. 361–362. , p. 361, at Google Books
  2. Titsingh, pp. 367–371. , p. 367, at Google Books
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Ackroyd, p. 331.
  4. Titsingh, p. 364. , p. 364, at Google Books
  5. Titsingh, p. 361. , p. 361, at Google Books
  6. Titsingh, p. 362. , p. 362, at Google Books
  7. Titsingh, p. 366–367. , p. 366, at Google Books
  8. 1 2 Titsingh, p. 370. , p. 370, at Google Books
  9. Ackroyd, p. 385 n104; excerpt, "Some apparent contradictions exist in various versions of the pedigree owing to adoptions and name-changes. Yoshitsuna (sometimes also read Yoshikore) changed his name and was adopted by Yoshitane. Some pedigrees show Yoshitsuna as Yoshizumi's son, and Yoshifuyu as Yoshizumi's son."
  10. 1 2 3 Ackroyd, p. 298.
  11. Titsingh, pp. 352–372. , p. 352, at Google Books

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Preceded by
Ashikaga Yoshihisa
Shōgun :
Ashikaga Yoshitane

Succeeded by
Ashikaga Yoshizumi
Preceded by
Ashikaga Yoshizumi
Shōgun :
Ashikaga Yoshitane

Succeeded by
Ashikaga Yoshiharu