Anayama Nobutada known as Baisetsu Nobutada, was a Japanese samurai. He was a nephew of Takeda Shingen, he became famous as one the "Twenty-Four Generals of Takeda Shingen". He fought for his uncle at the Battle of Kawanakajima, the Battle of Mikatagahara, the Battle of Nagashino before defecting to the service of Tokugawa Ieyasu, aiding him in his campaign against Takeda Katsuyori, he was rewarded by Tokugawa with a fief in Shinano Province for his service, but was captured and burned to death by Takeda sympathizers soon afterwards. He had one son, Anayama Nobukimi, who lived for just fifteen years, 1572 to 1587. Turnbull, Stephen; the Samurai Sourcebook. London: Cassell & Co. "Legendary Takeda's 24 Generals" at Yamanashi-kankou.jp Samurai Archives Japonia
Tsukioka Yoshitoshi was a Japanese artist. He is recognized as the last great master of the ukiyo-e genre of woodblock printing and painting, he is regarded as one of the form's greatest innovators. His career spanned two eras – the last years of Edo period Japan, the first years of modern Japan following the Meiji Restoration. Like many Japanese, Yoshitoshi was interested in new things from the rest of the world, but over time he became concerned with the loss of many aspects of traditional Japanese culture, among them traditional woodblock printing. By the end of his career, Yoshitoshi was in an single-handed struggle against time and technology; as he worked on in the old manner, Japan was adopting Western mass reproduction methods like photography and lithography. Nonetheless, in a Japan, turning away from its own past, he singlehandedly managed to push the traditional Japanese woodblock print to a new level, before it died with him, his life is best summed up by John Stevenson: Yoshitoshi's courage and force of character gave ukiyo-e another generation of life, illuminated it with one last burst of glory.
His reputation has only continued to grow, both in the West, among younger Japanese, he is now universally recognized as the greatest Japanese artist of his era. Yoshitoshi was born in the Shimbashi district of old Edo, in 1839, his original name was Owariya Yonejiro. His father was a wealthy merchant. At the age of three years, Yoshitoshi left home to live with his uncle, a pharmacist with no son, fond of his nephew. At the age of five, he started to take lessons from his uncle. In 1850, when he was 11 years old, Yoshitoshi was apprenticed to Kuniyoshi, one of the great masters of the Japanese woodblock print. Kuniyoshi gave his apprentice the new artist's name "Yoshitoshi", denoting lineage in the Utagawa School. Although he was not seen as Kuniyoshi's successor during his lifetime, he is now recognized as the most important pupil of Kuniyoshi. During his training, Yoshitoshi concentrated on refining his draftsmanship skills and copying his mentor’s sketches. Kuniyoshi emphasized drawing from real life, unusual in Japanese training because the artist’s goal was to capture the subject matter rather than making a literal interpretation of it.
Yoshitoshi learned the elements of western drawing techniques and perspective through studying Kuniyoshi’s collection of foreign prints and engravings. Yoshitoshi's first print appeared in 1853, but nothing else appeared for many years as a result of the illness of his master Kuniyoshi during his last years. Although his life was hard after Kuniyoshi's death in 1861, he did manage to produce some work, 44 prints of his being known from 1862. In the next two years he had sixty-three of his designs kabuki prints, published, he contributed designs to the 1863 Tokaido series by Utagawa School artists organized under the auspices of Kunisada. Many of Yoshitoshi's prints of the 1860s are depictions of graphic death; these themes were inspired by the death of Yoshitoshi's father in 1863 and by the lawlessness and violence of the Japan surrounding him, experiencing the breakdown of the feudal system imposed by the Tokugawa shogunate, as well as the effect of contact with Westerners. In late 1863, Yoshitoshi began making violent sketches incorporated into battle prints designed in a bloody and extravagant style.
The public enjoyed these prints and Yoshitoshi began to move up in the ranks of ukiyo-e artists in Edo. With the country at war, Yoshitoshi’s images allowed those who were not directly involved in the fighting to experience it vicariously through his designs; the public was attracted to Yoshitoshi’s work not only for his superior composition and draftsmanship, but his passion and intense involvement with his subject matter. Besides the demands of woodblock print publishers and consumers, Yoshitoshi was trying to exorcise the demons of horror that he and his fellow countrymen were experiencing; as he gained notoriety, Yoshitoshi was able to have ninety-five more of his designs published in 1865 on military and historical subjects. Among these, two series would reveal Yoshitoshi’s creativity and imagination; the first series, Tsūzoku saiyūki, is about a Chinese folk-hero. The second, Wakan hyaku monogatari, illustrates traditional ghost stories, his imaginative prints set him apart from any other artist of the time.
Between 1866 and 1868 Yoshitoshi created some disturbing images, notably in the series Eimei nijūhasshūku. These prints show killings in graphic detail, such as decapitations of women with bloody handprints on their robes. Other examples can be found in the strange figures of the 1866 series Kinsei kyōgiden, which depicted the power struggle between two gambling rings, the 1867 series Azuma no nishiki ukiyo kōdan. In 1868, following the Battle of Ueno, Yoshitoshi made the series Kaidai hyaku sensō in which he portrays contemporary soldiers as historical figures in a semi-western style, using close-up and unusual angles shown in the heat of battle with desperate expressions, it is said that Yoshitoshi's work of the "bloody" period has influenced writers such as Jun'ichirō Tanizaki as well as artists including Tadanori Yokoo and Masami Teraoka. Although Yoshitoshi made a name for himself in this manner, the "bloody" prints represent only a small portion of his work. Th
The Sengoku period is a period in Japanese history marked by social upheaval, political intrigue and near-constant military conflict. Japanese historians named it after the otherwise unrelated Warring States period in China, it was initiated by the Ōnin War, which collapsed the Japanese feudal system under the Ashikaga shogunate, came to an end when the system was re-established under the Tokugawa shogunate by Tokugawa Ieyasu. During this period, although the Emperor of Japan was the ruler of his nation and every lord swore loyalty to him, he was a marginalized and religious figure who delegated power to the shōgun, a noble, equivalent to a generalissimo. In the years preceding this era the Shogunate lost influence and control over the daimyōs. Although the Ashikaga shogunate had retained the structure of the Kamakura shogunate and instituted a warrior government based on the same social economic rights and obligations established by the Hōjō with the Jōei Code in 1232, it failed to win the loyalty of many daimyōs those whose domains were far from the capital, Kyoto.
Many of these Lords began to fight uncontrollably with each other for control over land and influence over the shogunate. As trade with Ming China grew, the economy developed, the use of money became widespread as markets and commercial cities appeared. This, combined with developments in agriculture and small-scale trading, led to the desire for greater local autonomy throughout all levels of the social hierarchy; as early as the beginning of the 15th century, the suffering caused by earthquakes and famines served to trigger armed uprisings by farmers weary of debt and taxes. The Ōnin War, a conflict rooted in economic distress and brought on by a dispute over shogunal succession, is regarded as the onset of the Sengoku period; the "eastern" army of the Hosokawa family and its allies clashed with the "western" army of the Yamana. Fighting in and around Kyoto lasted for nearly 11 years, leaving the city completely destroyed; the conflict in Kyoto spread to outlying provinces. The period culminated with a series of three warlords, Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Tokugawa Ieyasu, who unified Japan.
After Tokugawa Ieyasu's final victory at the siege of Osaka in 1615, Japan settled down into several centuries of peace under the Tokugawa shogunate. The Ōnin War in 1467 is considered the starting point of the Sengoku period. There are several events which could be considered the end of it: Nobunaga's entry to Kyoto or abolition of the Muromachi shogunate, the Siege of Odawara, the Battle of Sekigahara, the establishment of the Tokugawa Shogunate, or the Siege of Osaka; the upheaval resulted in the further weakening of central authority, throughout Japan regional lords, called daimyōs, rose to fill the vacuum. In the course of this power shift, well-established clans such as the Takeda and the Imagawa, who had ruled under the authority of both the Kamakura and Muromachi bakufu, were able to expand their spheres of influence. There were many, whose positions eroded and were usurped by more capable underlings; this phenomenon of social meritocracy, in which capable subordinates rejected the status quo and forcefully overthrew an emancipated aristocracy, became known as gekokujō, which means "low conquers high".
One of the earliest instances of this was Hōjō Sōun, who rose from humble origins and seized power in Izu Province in 1493. Building on the accomplishments of Sōun, the Late Hōjō clan remained a major power in the Kantō region until its subjugation by Toyotomi Hideyoshi late in the Sengoku period. Other notable examples include the supplanting of the Hosokawa clan by the Miyoshi, the Toki by the Saitō, the Shiba clan by the Oda clan, in turn replaced by its underling, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, a son of a peasant with no family name. Well-organized religious groups gained political power at this time by uniting farmers in resistance and rebellion against the rule of the daimyōs; the monks of the Buddhist True Pure Land sect formed numerous Ikkō-ikki, the most successful of which, in Kaga Province, remained independent for nearly 100 years. After nearly a century of political instability and warfare, Japan was on the verge of unification by Oda Nobunaga, who had emerged from obscurity in the province of Owari to dominate central Japan, when in 1582 Oda was assassinated by one of his generals, Akechi Mitsuhide.
This in turn provided Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who had risen through the ranks from ashigaru to become one of Oda's most trusted generals, with the opportunity to establish himself as Oda's successor. Toyotomi consolidated his control over the remaining daimyōs and, although he was ineligible for the title of Sei-i Taishōgun because of his common birth, ruled as Kampaku. During his short reign as Kampaku, Toyotomi attempted two invasions of Korea; the first spanning from 1592 to 1596 was successful but suffered setbacks to end in stalemate. When Toyotomi died in 1598 without leaving a capable successor, the country was once again thrust into political turmoil, this time Tokugawa Ieyasu took advantage of the opportunity. Toyotomi had on his deathbed appointed a group of the most powerful lords in Japan—Tokugawa, Maeda Toshiie, Ukita Hideie, Uesugi Kagekatsu, Mōri Terumoto—to govern as the Council of
The Honnō-ji Incident refers to the forced suicide on June 21, 1582, of Japanese daimyō Oda Nobunaga at the hands of his samurai general Akechi Mitsuhide. This occurred in Honnō-ji, a temple in Kyoto, ending Nobunaga's quest to consolidate centralized power in Japan under his authority. Oda Nobunaga was at the height of his power, having destroyed the Takeda clan earlier that year at the Battle of Tenmokuzan, he had central Japan under his control, his only rivals were the Mōri clan, the Uesugi clan, the Hōjō clan, each weakened by internal affairs. After the death of Mōri Motonari, his grandson, strove only to maintain the status quo, aided by his two uncles, as per Motonari's will. Hōjō Ujiyasu, a renowned strategist and domestic manager, had died, leaving his less prominent son Ujimasa in place; the death of Uesugi Kenshin left the Uesugi clan, devastated by an internal conflict between his two adopted sons, weaker than before. It was at this point that Oda Nobunaga began sending his generals aggressively into all directions to continue his military expansion.
He ordered Hashiba Hideyoshi to attack the Mōri clan. At the same time, Nobunaga invited his ally Tokugawa Ieyasu to tour the Kansai region in celebration of the demise of the Takeda clan. Around this time, Nobunaga received a request for reinforcements from Hashiba Hideyoshi, whose forces were stuck besieging the Mōri-controlled Takamatsu Castle. Nobunaga parted ways with Ieyasu, who went on to tour the rest of Kansai while Nobunaga himself made preparations to aid Hashiba in the frontline, he ordered Akechi Mitsuhide to go to Hideyoshi's aid, travelled to Honnō temple, his usual resting place when he stopped by in Kyoto. The only people he had around him were court officials, upper-class artists, dozens of servants. Upon receiving the order, Mitsuhide returned to Sakamoto Castle and moved to his base in Tanba Province. Around this time, he had a session of renga with several prominent poets, where he made clear his intentions of uprising. Mitsuhide saw an opportunity to act, when not only was Nobunaga resting in Honnō-ji and unprepared for an attack, but all the other major daimyō and the bulk of Nobunaga's army were occupied in other parts of the country.
Mitsuhide led his army toward Kyoto under the pretense of following the order of Nobunaga. It was not the first time that Nobunaga had demonstrated his modernized and well-equipped troops in Kyoto, so the march toward Kyoto did not raise any suspicion; as they were crossing Katsura River, Mitsuhide announced to his troops that "The enemy awaits at Honnō-ji!". Before dawn, the Akechi army had the temple surrounded in a coup. Nobunaga and his servants and bodyguards resisted, but they realized it was futile against the overwhelming numbers of Akechi troops. Nobunaga committed suicide. Ranmaru followed suit, his loyalty and devotion makes him a revered figure in history. Nobunaga's remains were not found, a fact speculated about by writers and historians. After capturing Honnō-ji, Mitsuhide attacked eldest son and heir of Nobunaga. Nobutada committed suicide. After trying to persuade Oda vassals in the vicinity to recognize him as the new master of former Oda territories, Akechi entered Azuchi Castle and began sending messages to the Imperial Court to boost his position and force the court to recognize him as well.
Akechi Mitsuhide's reasons for the coup are a mystery and have been a source of controversy and speculation. Although there have been several theories, the reason the historian Kuwata Tadachika put forth was that Mitsuhide bore a personal grudge. Other theories maintain that Mitsuhide acted out of fear, had the ambition to take over Japan, was acting to protect the Imperial Court, or was trying to remove the iconoclastic revolutionary. Another theory is. Many think; when Nobunaga invited Tokugawa Ieyasu to Azuchi Castle, Akechi was the official in charge of catering to the needs of Ieyasu's group. He was removed from this post for unknown reasons. One story spoke of Nobunaga yelling at him in front of the guests for serving rotten fish. Another story tells that when Nobunaga gave Akechi the order to assist Hashiba Hideyoshi, it was somehow hinted that Akechi would lose his current territories and would have to fight for land, not under Oda control yet; as Nobunaga had sent two senior retainers under him, Sakuma Nobumori and Hayashi Hidesada, into exile for poor performance, Akechi might have thought that he could suffer a similar fate.
Akechi was in his early fifties, some believe he might have felt insecure about such a grim future. Furthermore, when invading Tanba Province, Akechi Mitsuhide sent his mother as hostage to the Yagami Castle castellan, Hatano Hideharu to convince him to surrender. Nobunaga, had Hatano Hideharu executed, an act that caused former Hatano retainers to kill Akechi's mother. Akechi Mitsuhide felt humiliated and depressed by this and decided to kill his master; this story, began to circulate only during the Edo period, is of dubious historical origin. Luís Fróis wrote that Mitsuhide liked to use treachery and diversion as his
Siege of Takatō (1545)
The 1545 siege of Takatō castle marked the first time Takatō had been besieged. Takeda Shingen, continuing his sweep through the Ima Valley of Shinano Province, seeking to take control of the entire province, defeated Takatō Yoritsugu, the castellan. Takatō had relied on support from his allies, Ogasawara Nagatoki and Tozawa Yorichika, who failed to aid in his defense. Turnbull, Stephen.'The Samurai Sourcebook'. London: Cassell & Co. Siege of Takatō
Yamagata Masakage was a Japanese samurai warrior of the Sengoku period. He is known as one of the "Twenty-Four Generals of Takeda Shingen", he was famous for his red armour and skill in battlefield, was a personal friend of Takeda Shingen. He was the younger brother of Obu Toramasa, a retainer of Shingen leading the famous "red fire unit". After his brother committed Seppuku as a cover for Takeda Yoshinobu's failed rebellion, Masakage took the red fire unit title and outfitted his cavalry in bright red armor, it was said. Yamagata was a fierce warrior, given a fief in Shinano, he was present at the Battle of Mimasetoge in 1569 and captured Yoshida Castle, a Tokugawa possession, during the Mikatagahara Campaign. He was present for the following Battle of Mikatagahara, his last campaign was in the ill-fated Battle of Nagashino in 1575, in which he tried to persuade Katsuyori to honorably withdraw. Ii Naomasa from the Tokugawa clan was inspired by Yamagata's red colour. Yamagata is one of the main characters in Akira Kurosawa's epic film Kagemusha.
"Legendary Takeda's 24 Generals" at Yamanashi-kankou.jp Samurai-archives The armor of red's preparation
The Oda clan was a family of Japanese daimyōs who were to become an important political force in the unification of Japan in the mid-16th century. Though they had the climax of their fame under Oda Nobunaga and fell from the spotlight soon after, several branches of the family continued as daimyō houses until the Meiji Restoration; the Oda family in the time of Nobunaga claimed descent from the Taira clan, by Taira no Chikazane, a grandson of Taira no Shigemori. Taira no Chikazane took its name, his descendants, great vassals of the Shiba clan, shugo of Echizen and other provinces, followed the latter to Owari Province and received Inuyama Castle in 1435. This castle was built by Shiba Yoshitake who entrusted its safety to the Oda family; the Oda had been shugo-dai for several generations. In 1452, after the death of Shiba Yoshitake the vassals of the Shiba, like the Oda in Owari Province and the Asakura clan in Echizen Province, refused the succession of Shiba Yoshitoshi and supported Shiba Yoshikado, began to divide the large domains of their suzerains among themselves, had become independent in the domains, confided to them.
In 1475, the Oda had occupied the greater portion of Owari Province, but the Shiba would continue to try to regain authority until Shiba Yoshikane, who had to leave Owari. The other famous castle of the Oda is Kiyosu Castle, built between 1394 and 1427 by Shiba Yoshishige who entrusted the castle to the Oda clan, named Oda Toshisada vice-governor of the province. Toshisada had four sons; the fourth son, who lived in Katsubata Castle, was the father of Nobuhide and the grandfather of Oda Nobunaga. Nobuhide took Nagoya Castle in 1525, built Furuwatari Castle. Oda Nobutomo held Kiyosu Castle, but he was besieged and killed in 1555 by his nephew Oda Nobunaga who operated from Nagoya Castle; this led to the family being divided into several branches, until the branch led by Oda Nobunaga eclipsed the others and unified its control over Owari. Turning to neighboring rivals, it one by one achieved dominance over the Imagawa, Azai and other clans, until Nobunaga held control over central Japan. However, Nobunaga's plans for national domination were thwarted when he fell victim to the treachery of his vassal Akechi Mitsuhide who killed him at the Incident at Honnō-ji in the summer of 1582.
The Oda remained titular overlords of central Japan for a short time, before being surpassed by the family of one of Nobunaga's chief generals, Hashiba Hideyoshi. Though the Oda were eclipsed by Toyotomi Hideyoshi following Nobunaga's death, it is not known that the Oda continued to be a presence in Japanese politics. One branch of the family became hatamoto retainers to the Tokugawa shōgun, while other branches became minor daimyō lords; as of the end of the Edo period, these included Tendō Domain, Yanagimoto han, Kaiju han, Kaibara han. During the reign of the daimyō Nobutoshi, the Oda of Tendō Domain were signatories to the pact that created the Ōuetsu Reppan Dōmei. Descendants of the Oda Clan can be found throughout Japan in the south and southwest. Oda Chikazane Oda Nobuhide Oda Nobuhiro Oda Nobunaga Oda Nobuyuki Oda Nobukane Oda Nagamasu Oda Nobuharu Oda Nobuzumi Oda Nobutada Oda Nobutaka Oda Nobukatsu Hashiba Hidekatsu Oda Katsunaga Oda Hidekatsu Oda Hidenobu Oda Nobutoshi Information on the Oda clan's background This article incorporates text from OpenHistory