Minamoto no Yoritomo
July 12, 1192 –February 9, 1199
|Preceded by||Shogunate established|
|Succeeded by||Minamoto no Yoriie|
|Head of the Kawachi Genji|
|Preceded by||Minamoto no Yoshitomo|
|Succeeded by||Minamoto no Yoriie|
|Born||May 9,1147[ citation needed ]|
Atsuta,Owari Province (currently Nagoya,Aichi,Japan)
|Died||February 9,1199 (aged 52) |
|Relations||Kame no Mae (concubine)|
Daishin no Tsubone (concubine)
|Relatives|| Fujiwara no Suenori (grandfather)|
Minamoto no Yoshihira (brother)
Minamoto no Noriyori (brother)
Minamoto no Tomonaga (half-brother)
Minamoto no Yoshitsune (half-brother)
Minamoto no Yoritomo (源頼朝,May 9,1147 –February 9,1199) was the founder and the first shogun of the Kamakura shogunate of Japan,ruling from 1192 until 1199. He was the husband of HōjōMasako who acted as regent ( shikken ) after his death.
Yoritomo was the son of Minamoto no Yoshitomo and belonged to Seiwa Genji's prestigious Kawachi Genji family. After setting himself the rightful heir of the Minamoto clan,he led his clan against the Taira clan from his capital in Kamakura,beginning the Genpei War in 1180. After five years of war,he finally defeated the Taira clan in the Battle of Dan-no-ura in 1185. Yoritomo thus established the supremacy of the warrior samurai caste and the first shogunate ( bakufu ) at Kamakura,beginning the feudal age in Japan,which lasted until the mid-19th century.
Yoritomo was the third son of Minamoto no Yoshitomo,heir of the Minamoto (Seiwa Genji) clan,and his official wife,Yura-Gozen,daughter of Fujiwara no Suenori,head of Atsuta Shrine and a member of the illustrious Fujiwara clan. Yoritomo was born in the family villa,on the western side of Atsuta Shrine,in Atsuta,Nagoya,Owari Province(present-day Seigan-ji). At that time Yoritomo's grandfather Minamoto no Tameyoshi was the head of the Minamoto. His childhood name was Oniwakamaru (鬼武丸). He was a descendant of Emperor Seiwa.
In 1156,factional divisions in the court erupted into open warfare within the capital. The cloistered Emperor Toba and his son Emperor Go-Shirakawa sided with the son of Fujiwara regent Fujiwara no Tadazane,Fujiwara no Tadamichi as well as Taira no Kiyomori (heir of the Taira clan at the time),while Cloistered Emperor Sutoku sided with Tadazane's younger son,Fujiwara no Yorinaga. This is known as the Hōgen Rebellion. : 210–211, 255
The Minamoto clan were split. The head of the clan,Tameyoshi,sided with Sutoku. However,his son,Yoshitomo (father of Yoritomo),sided with Toba and Go-Shirakawa,as well as Kiyomori. In the end,the supporters of Go-Shirakawa won the civil war,thus ensuring victory for Yoshitomo and Kiyomori. Sutoku was placed under house arrest,and Yorinaga was fatally wounded in battle. Tameyoshi was executed by the forces of Yoshitomo. Nonetheless,Go-Shirakawa and Kiyomori were ruthless,and Yoshitomo found himself as the head of the Minamoto clan,while Yoritomo became the heir.
Yoritomo and the Minamoto clan descended from the imperial family on his father's side. Nonetheless,in Kyoto,the Taira clan,now under the leadership of Kiyomori,and the Minamoto clan,under the leadership of Yoshitomo,began to factionalize again. : 239–241, 256–257
Four years later,Kiyomori supported Fujiwara no Michinori,also known as Shinzei. However,Yoshitomo supported Fujiwara no Nobuyori. This was known as the Heiji Rebellion. Nonetheless,the Minamoto were not well prepared,and the Taira took control of Kyoto. Shinzei's mansion was attacked by the Taira;Shinzei escaped,only to be captured and decapitated shortly thereafter. The Taira then burned the ex-emperor's palace,defeating the Minamoto. Yoshitomo fled the capital but was later betrayed and executed by a retainer.
In the aftermath,harsh terms were imposed on the Minamoto and their allies. Only Yoshitomo's three young boys remained alive,so that Kiyomori and the Taira clan were now the undisputed leaders of Japan. : 258–260 Yoritomo,the new head of the Minamoto,was not executed by Kiyomori because of pleas from Kiyomori's stepmother but was exiled. Yoritomo's brothers,Minamoto no Noriyori and Minamoto no Yoshitsune were also allowed to live.
Yoritomo grew up in exile. He married into the Hōjōclan,led by HōjōTokimasa,marrying Tokimasa's daughter,HōjōMasako. : 147 : 371 Meanwhile,he was notified of events in Kyoto.
Consorts and issues
In 1180 Prince Mochihito,a son of Cloistered Emperor Go-Shirakawa,made a national call to arms of the Minamoto clan all over Japan to rebel against the Taira. Yoritomo took part in this,especially after tensions escalated between the Taira and Minamoto after the death of Minamoto no Yorimasa and Prince Mochihito himself. : 278–281, 291
Yoritomo established himself as the rightful heir of the Minamoto clan and set up a capital in Kamakura to the east. Not all Minamoto thought of Yoritomo as rightful heir,however. His uncle,Minamoto no Yukiie,and his cousin Minamoto no Yoshinaka,conspired against him. : 296
In September 1180,Yoritomo was defeated at the Battle of Ishibashiyama,his first major battle,when Ōba Kagechika led a rapid night attack. : 289–291After his defeat in Mt. Ishibashiyama,Minamoto no Yoritomo fled into the Hakone mountains,stayed in Yugawara,then escaped from Manazuru-Iwa to Awa (south of present-day Chiba). Yoritomo spent the next six months raising a new army.
Taira no Kiyomori died in 1181 and the Taira clan was now led by Taira no Munemori. : 287 Munemori took a much more aggressive policy against the Minamoto and attacked Minamoto bases from Kyoto in the Genpei War. Nonetheless,Yoritomo was well protected in Kamakura.
His brothers Minamoto no Yoshitsune and Minamoto no Noriyori defeated the Taira in several battles,but they could not stop Minamoto no Yoshinaka,Yoritomo's rival,from entering Kyoto in 1183 and chasing the Taira south. The Taira took Emperor Antoku with them. : 289–305 In 1184,the Minamoto replaced Antoku with Emperor Go-Toba as the new emperor. : 319
From 1181 to 1184,a de facto truce with the Taira-dominated court allowed Yoritomo the time to build an administration of his own,centered on his military headquarters in Kamakura. In the end he triumphed over his rival cousins,who sought to steal control of the clan from him,and over the Taira,who suffered a terrible defeat at the Battle of Dan-no-ura in 1185. Yoritomo thus established the supremacy of the warrior samurai caste and the first bakufu (shogunate) at Kamakura,beginning the feudal age in Japan which lasted until the mid-19th century.
In December 1185,Go-Shirakawa granted Yoritomo the authority to collect the commissariat tax (the hyoro-mai or levy contribution of rice) and to appoint stewards (jito) and constables (shugo). Thus the Throne "handed to the leader of the military class effective jurisdiction in matters of land tenure and the income derived from agriculture".[ attribution needed ]
In the summer of 1189,Yoritomo invaded and subjugated Mutsu Province and Dewa Province. In December 1190 Yoritomo took up residence in his Rokuhara mansion at the capital,the former headquarters of the Taira clan. Upon the death of Go-Shirakawa in the spring of 1192,Go-Toba commissioned Yoritomo Sei-i Tai Shōgun (Generalissimo). Thus a feudal state was now organized in Kamakura while Kyoto was relegated to the role of "national ceremony and ritual". : 317–318, 327, 329, 331
Yoritomo gathered his gokenin in May 1193 and arranged a grand hunting event,Fuji no Makigari. On May 16,Yoritomo's 12-year-old son Yoriie shot a deer for the first time. Hunting was stopped and a festival was held in the evening. Yoritomo rejoiced in his son's achievement and sent a messenger to his wife Masako,but Masako sent the messenger back,saying that a military commander's son being able to shoot a deer is nothing to celebrate.
The Revenge of the Soga Brothers took place on May 28 of the same year at the Fuji no Makigari hunting event. The brothers Soga Sukenari and Soga Tokimune murdered the killer of their father,KudōSuketsune. The brothers managed to kill 10 other participants until Nitta Tadatsune killed Sukenari. Then,Tokimune raided Yoritomo's mansion attempting to attack Yoritomo,but was finally taken down by Gosho no Gorōmaru,thus saving Yoritomo from a possible assassination attempt and ending the massacre. After this,Yoritomo took Tokimune in for questioning and had him executed later.
Yoritomo was ordained as a Buddhist monk in 1199 and left his home. He received the Buddhist name Bukōshōgendaizenmon (武皇嘯厚大禅門). He died two days later at the age of 52.
According to The Tale of Heiji, Yoritomo was "more adult-like than others of his age",and the figure of a young warrior Yoritomo appears in the picture scroll of The Tale of Heiji. Genpei Jōsuiki describes Yoritomo saying "his face is large and appearance is beautiful." The imperial messenger Nakahara no Yasusada,who met Yoritomo in Kamakura in August 1183,said that "he is short and his face is large,his appearance is graceful and language is civilized."
Kujōno Kanezane writes in his diary Tamaha that "Yoritomo's body is of rigorous power,and his fierce nature is accompanied with a clear distinction and firm resolution of the judgement of right and wrong." [ who? ],a member of the Imperial Guard.Yoritomo practiced shudō with Yoshinao
Historian Hideo Kuroda organized and examined the portraits and statues of Minamoto no Yoritomo and has concluded as follows. When comparing the statues of Minamoto no Yoritomo in Higashihirozo and HōjōTokiyori in Kenchō-ji,from the facial expression to size,they are almost identical,and there is evidence that the kariginu was remodeled into a sokutai ,the formal dress of the shogun,by adding a hirao and sekitai. Kuroda argues that the statue was originally a statue of HōjōTokiyori sculpted in Kamakura in the 14th century,but after the original statue of Yoritomo was lost,an altered statue of Tokiyori was used as a replacement. On the other hand,he considers the inscription on the statue of Minamoto no Yoritomo in Kai Province,Zenkō-ji to be the name of the repairer instead of the name of the sculptor,and that it was made at the request of HōjōMasako in the first quarter of the 13th century. Thus,Kuroda concludes that this statue is the only accurate depiction of Minamoto no Yoritomo.
In the words of George Bailey Sansom,"Yoritomo was a truly great man …his foresight was remarkable,but so was his practical good sense in setting up machinery to match his own expanding power." : 334–335
Yoritomo's wife's family,the Hōjō,took control after his death at Kamakura,maintaining power over the shogunate until 1333,under the title of shikken (regent to the shōgun). One of his brothers-in-law was Ashikaga Yoshikane.
The stone pagoda traditionally believed to be his grave is still maintained today,adjacent to Shirahata Shrine,a short distance from the spot believed to be the site of the so-called Ōkura Bakufu,his shogunate's administrative-governmental offices.
He appears as a hero unit in Age of Empires II:The Age of Kings ,and as a hero unit in Total War:Shogun 2 .
A character named "Yoritomo" appears in Book 6:"The Lords of the Rising Sun" in the Fabled Lands adventure gamebook series,where Yoritomo is the self-proclaimed shōgun and on the verge of war with "Lord Kiyomori".
He appears as the final boss in Genpei Toma Den,an arcade game created by Namco in which the player character is Taira no Kagekiyo,another Japanese historical figure.
He also appears as a prominent character in the 2021 anime series The Heike Story.
The years in which Yoritomo was shōgun are more specifically identified by more than one era name or nengō .
The Kamakura shogunate was the feudal military government of Japan during the Kamakura period from 1185 to 1333.
Taira no Kiyomori was a military leader and kugyō of the late Heian period of Japan. He established the first samurai-dominated administrative government in the history of Japan.
The Heiji rebellion was a short civil war between rival subjects of the cloistered Emperor Go-Shirakawa of Japan in 1160 fought in order to resolve a dispute about political power. It was preceded by the Hōgen Rebellion in 1156. Heiji no ran is seen as a direct outcome of the earlier armed dispute; but unlike Hōgen no ran, which was a dispute between members of the same clan, this was rather a struggle for power between two rival clans. It is also seen as a precursor of a broader civil war.
Minamoto (源) was one of the surnames bestowed by the Emperors of Japan upon members of the imperial family who were excluded from the line of succession and demoted into the ranks of the nobility from 1192 to 1333. The practice was most prevalent during the Heian period, although its last occurrence was during the Sengoku period. The Taira were another such offshoot of the imperial dynasty, making both clans distant relatives. The Minamoto clan is also called the Genji (源氏), or less frequently, the Genke (源家), using the on'yomi reading for Minamoto.
The Taira was one of the four most important clans that dominated Japanese politics during the Heian, Kamakura and Muromachi Periods of Japanese history – the others being the Fujiwara, the Tachibana, and the Minamoto. The clan is divided into four major groups, named after the emperor they descended from: Kanmu Heishi, Ninmyō Heishi, Montoku Heishi, and Kōkō Heishi.
Minamoto no Sanetomo was the third shōgun of the Kamakura shogunate. He was the second son of the Kamakura shogunate founder, Minamoto no Yoritomo. His mother was Hōjō Masako and his older brother was second Kamakura shogun Minamoto no Yoriie.
Emperor Go-Shirakawa was the 77th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. His de jure reign spanned the years from 1155 through 1158, though arguably he effectively maintained imperial power for almost thirty-seven years through the insei system – scholars differ as to whether his rule can be truly considered part of the insei system, given that the Hōgen Rebellion undermined the imperial position. However, it is broadly acknowledged that by politically outmaneuvering his opponents, he attained greater influence and power than the diminished authority of the emperor's position during this period would otherwise allow.
Minamoto no Yoshitomo was the head of the Minamoto clan and a general of the late Heian period of Japanese history. His son Minamoto no Yoritomo became shōgun and founded the Kamakura shogunate, the first shogunate in the history of Japan.
Minamoto no Yoshitsune was a military commander of the Minamoto clan of Japan in the late Heian and early Kamakura periods. During the Genpei War, he led a series of battles which toppled the Ise-Heishi branch of the Taira clan, helping his half-brother Yoritomo consolidate power. He is considered one of the greatest and the most popular warriors of his era, and one of the most famous samurai fighters in the history of Japan. Yoshitsune perished after being betrayed by the son of a trusted ally.
Hōjō Masako was a Japanese Buddhist nun and politician who exercised significant power in the early years of the Kamakura period, which was reflected by her contemporary sobriquet of the "nun shogun". She was the eldest daughter of Hōjō Tokimasa and sister of Hōjō Yoshitoki, both of them shikkens of the Kamakura shogunate. She was the wife of Minamoto no Yoritomo, and mother of Minamoto no Yoriie and Minamoto no Sanetomo, the first, second and third shōguns of the Kamakura period.
The Genpei War (1180–1185) was a national civil war between the Taira and Minamoto clans during the late-Heian period of Japan. It resulted in the downfall of the Taira and the establishment of the Kamakura shogunate under Minamoto no Yoritomo, who appointed himself as Shōgun in 1192, governing Japan as a military dictator from the eastern city of Kamakura.
The Tale of the Heike is an epic account compiled prior to 1330 of the struggle between the Taira clan and Minamoto clan for control of Japan at the end of the 12th century in the Genpei War (1180–1185). Heike (平家) refers to the Taira (平), hei being the on'yomi reading of the first kanji and "ke" (家) means family. Note that in the title of the Genpei War, "hei" is in this combination read as "pei" and the "gen" (源) is the first kanji used in the Minamoto clan's name.
Minamoto no Noriyori was a late Heian period general, who fought alongside his brothers Minamoto no Yoritomo and Minamoto no Yoshitsune at a number of battles of the Genpei War. He was the sixth son of Minamoto no Yoshitomo.
Hōjō Yoshitoki was the second Hōjō shikken (regent) of the Kamakura shogunate and head of the Hōjō clan. He was the second son of Hōjō Tokimasa. He was shikken from the abdication of his father Tokimasa in 1205 until his death in 1224.
Hōjō Tokimasa was the first Hōjō shikken (regent) of the Kamakura shogunate and head of the Hōjō clan. He was shikken from 1203 until his abdication in 1205.
The Kawachi Genji (河内源氏) were members of a family line within that of the Seiwa Genji, which in turn was one of several branches of the Minamoto clan, one of the most famous noble clans in Japanese history. Descended from Minamoto no Yorinobu (968–1048), the Kawachi Genji included Minamoto no Yoshiie (1041–1108), who fought in the Zenkunen War and Gosannen War, and common ancestor of nearly all the major Minamoto generals of the Genpei War from which the Minamoto are famous.
Ashikaga Yoshikane was a Japanese samurai military commander, feudal lord in the late Heian and early Kamakura period of Japan's history. He played an active part in the Jishō-Juei War and the later military campaign as a closely related person of the first Kamakura shōgun Minamoto no Yoritomo, and made Ashikaga clan influential position in gokenin vassal of the Kamakura shogunate.
Yoshitsune (義経) is a Japanese television drama series originally broadcast between 9 January and 11 December 2005, with a three-part special compilation being aired from 24 December to 25 December 2005. The 44th Taiga Drama, the original work is by Miyao Tomiko, screenplay by Kaneko Narito and starring Hideaki Takizawa.
Taira no Kiyomori (平清盛) is a 2012 Japanese historical television series. It is the 51st NHK taiga drama.
Nakahara no Chikayoshi was a Japanese court noble and shogunate official of the late Heian and early Kamakura period. He served as Governor of Kyoto, Defense Commissioner of the West and Magistrate of Public Affairs under the Kamakura shogunate. As a court official he served as Vice-Minister of Saiin Palace, Vice-Governor of Mino Province, Senior Assistant to Minister of Ceremonial Affairs and Head of Bureau of Imperial Palace Cleaning, and held the court rank of Senior Fifth Rank. He was the father of Ōtomo Yoshinao, the founder of the Ōtomo clan, and has been credited for creating a foundation for the future dominant position of the Ōtomo clan in Kyushu.