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HONDA (Mikawa)

The Honda mon

The Honda family of Mikawa Province was descended from Fujiwara Kanemichi (925-977). Two main branches loyally served Tokugawa Ieyasu, of whom Tadakatsu and Masanobu were the best known respectively. Two further branches were represented by Honda Shigetsugu and Honda Yasushige.

Honda Tadakatsu
Tokugawa retainer

Honda Tadakatsu

Tadakatsu was a son of Honda Tadamasa (1530-1572). He began his career as a page to Tokugawa Ieyasu and was known at first as Heihachiro. He was to distinguish himself for bravery in almost every battle he fought. He served with distinction at Anegawa (1570), Mikatagahara (1573), Nagashino (1575), Takatenjin (1581), and the Komaki Campaign (1584). In the last, he challenged Hideyoshi's entire army with a few thousand men, determined to delay the latter's movements if only for a few minutes while Ieyasu was fighting Toyotomi troops at Nagakute. Hideyoshi is said to have been moved by Tadakatsu's bravery and ordered that no harm come to him. In 1586 Tadakatsu was awarded the title Nakatsukasa-taiyu and after the Tokugawa were transferred to the Kanto received Otaki Castle in Kazusa Province (worth some 100,000 koku). He was present at the Battle of Sekigahara (1600) and afterwards received a 150,000-koku fief in Izu Province at Kuwana. He is said to have avoided injury in all the many battles he fought in and was well known for his helmet, which sported deer antlers, which he is thought to have begun wearing around 1561.
Sons: Tadamasa, Tadatoki

Honda Tadamasa
Tokugawa retainer
Mino no kami

Tadamasa was the eldest son of Honda Tadakatsu. He accompanied Tokugawa Hidetada during the Sekigahara Campaign (1600) and fought at the Osaka Castle sieges (1614, 1615). In 1617 he received a 250,000-koku fief at Himeji in Harima Province. He was married to a daughter of the by-then late Tokugawa Nobuyasu, Ieyasu's eldest son.
Sons: Tadatoki (1596-1626), Tadayoshi (1602-1676), Masatoki

Honda Tadatoki
Tokugawa retainer
Izumo no kami

Tadatoki was the younger son of Honda Tadakatsu. In 1600 he was given a 100,000-koku fief at Otaki in Kazusa Province and in 1609 he received the Spanish Governor of Manila (Don Roderigo Vivero y Velasco), whose ship had wrecked on the coast of Kazusa. He played a critical role in the Battle of Tennoji (1615), leading an attack that resulted in the death of Sanada Yukimura. He was killed in the same battle.
Son: Masakatsu (Dewa no kami; 1596-1630)

Honda Masanobu
Tokugawa retainer
Sado no Kami

Masanobu was the eldest son of Honda Toshimasa. Originally an attendant to Tokugawa Ieyasu, he became a retainer of Sakai Shogen, a militant ecclesiast lord of Ueno. This made him an enemy of Ieyasu, who opposed the Mikawa monto. When the monto were defeated in 1564, Masanobu fled, eventually returning to rejoin Ieyasu's service. While not a soldier of any renown due to a wound suffered in his youth, Masanobu was often to be found at Ieyasu's side for the next fifty years. He was made secretary to Tokugawa Hidetada and his efforts helped prevent a rift between Hidetada and Ieyasu when the former was late arriving at Sekigahara (1600). Masanobu was said to have been at the center of the scandal that disgraced the Okubo family (1614) and some scholars believe Masanobu to have been a cunning schemer, noting his frequent feuds with Ieyasu's other chief retainers and his conspicuous refusal to accept rewards. It can be said that Ieyasu thought highly of Masanobu and was given to describing him as 'my friend'. He died of an illness in 1617, a year after Ieyasu.
Sons: Masazumi, Masashige, Tadazumi

Honda Masashige
Tokugawa retainer

Masashige was the 4th son of Honda Toshimasa and a younger brother of Honda Masanobu. He at first served Tokugawa Ieyasu and became known for his bravery in combat, to the extent that Oda Nobunaga himself made mention of Masashige's prowess. Yet, not long after serving at the Battle of Nagashino and assisting in the recapture of Futamata Castle in 1575, Masashige left the Tokugawa and took up service with Oda retainer Takigawa Kazumasu. In 1583 Masashige left Takigawa to serve Maeda Toshiie and led troops for the latter against Sasa Narimasa. Not one to settle down for long, it would seem, Masashige next entered the employment of Gamô Ujisato and fought with distinction in the Kyushu Campaign (1587). Masashige next came into some sort of dispute with the Gamô and departed their service. Finally, in 1596, Masashige returned to the Tokugawa and fought under their standard at the Battle of Sekigahara (1600). He was afterwards given a fief in Shimôsa Province but retired in 1616 and went to Kyoto, where he died the following year.

Honda Masazumi
Tokugawa retainer
Kôzuke no suke

Masazumi was the eldest son of Honda Masanobu. Like his father, Masazumi's activities were largely confined to civil affairs and, like his father, he has been accused of being an inveterate schemer. At the end of the Osaka 'Winter Campaign' (1614), it was Masazumi whose men filled in the outer and second moats of the castle, in violation of the peace treaty. In 1619 he was given Utsunomiya in Shimotsuke Province but was dispossessed in 1622. Earlier that year, Mogami Yoshitoshi had been dispossessed and Masazumi was accused of attempting to profit from the situation. He lost his domain and later died of illness in Dewa Province. He was also known as Honda Yahachirô.

Honda Masashige
Tokugawa, Ôtani, Ukita, Meada retainer
Awa no kami

Masashige was the second son of Honda Masanobu (and a nephew of another Honda Masashige - whose own 'Masa' was written with a different character). In 1597 Masashige came to enter the service of Ôtani Yoshitsugu, whom he left in 1599 for Ukita Hideie. He fought under the Ukita banner at the Battle of Sekigahara (1600) and afterwards went into hiding, finding refuge with Fukushima Masanori. in 1602 Masashige entered the service of the Maeda but departed not long afterwards for Kyoto. He returned to the Maeda in 1613 and became an important retainer of that house, serving under their banner at the Osaka Campaigns. He was married to the daughter of Uesugi retainer Naoe Kanetsugu.

Honda Tadazumi
Tokugawa retainer
Ôsumi no kami

Tadazumi was the third son of Honda Masanobu. In 1605 he was given a 10,000-koku domain in Shimotsuke Province. This was doubled to 20,000 in 1615. He was also known as Honda Daigaku.

Honda Tadatsugu
Tokugawa retainer

Tadatsugu served Tokugawa Ieyasu and was present in a number of the latter's great battles, fighting in the vanguard to capture Yoshida Castle in 1564, then following Ieyasu to serve at the battles of Anegawa (1570), Nagashino (1575), and Takatenjin (1581). He was married to a daughter of Suganuma Sadamura and was present for the marriage of Ieyasu's second daughter to Hôjô Ujinao (1583).
Son: Yasutoshi (adopted)

Honda Yasutoshi
Tokugawa retainer
Tokugawa retainer

Yasutoshi was the second son of Sakai Tadatsugu and was adopted by Honda Tadatsugu. He acted as the castellan of Okazaki Castle in Mikawa Province and was sent as a hostage to Toyotomi Hideyoshi during the Odawara Campaign (1590). He was a cousin to Tokugawa Ieyasu and served in the Osaka Winter campaign (1614). He received Zeze in Ômi Province, worth 30,000 koku, in 1607

Honda Shigetsugu
Tokugawa retainer

Shigetsugu, a son of Honda Shigemasa, was born in Kamiwada Castle in Mikawa Province and was at first known as Sakujûrô. He became one of Tokugawa Ieyasu's most trusted retainers and was present for many of his battles, including Terabe (1559), the suppression of the Mikawa monto in 1564, the battles of Mikatagahara (1573) and Nagashino (1575), and Takatenjin (1581). In 1565 he was named one of Mikawa's three bugyo (commissioners), along with Amano Yasukage and Koriki Kiyonaga, and in 1579 was named the keeper of Okazaki Castle. Following the Komaki Campaign (1584), he earned notoriety for his treatment of Hideyoshi's mother, sent as a hostage to Ieyasu. Preparing for any treachery on Hideyoshi's part, Shigetsugu piled up hay around the house where the former's mother was staying - to set alight at a moment's notice. Hideyoshi, who treasured his mother, was most displeased by Shigetsugu's conduct and in 1590 asked Ieyasu to send him into retirement. Shigetsugu was duly dismissed from service in September of that year and went into quiet retirement. He was skilled with the written word and is well-known for a letter to his wife that he penned while in camp just prior to the Battle of Nagashino in 1575 reminding her of her household duties while he was away. He was also known as Honda Sakuzaemon and for his stern demeanor was given the nickname 'Devil Sakuza'. At the same time, he was known to have had his moments of compassion. When Ieyasu's wife discovered that one of her ladies in waiting was pregnant with a child of Ieyasu, she had the girl bound and deposited in a field. Shigetsugu took pity on the girl and took her in. The child she delivered was Ieyasu's second son Nobuyasu, to whom Shigetsugu would later act as guardian for a time when Ieyasu had recognized the boy.
Son: Narishige

Honda Narishige
Tokugawa retainer
Hida no kami

Narishige was the son of Honda Shigetsugu and was born at Hamamatsu Castle in Tôtômi Province. After Tokugawa Ieyasu's submission to Hideyoshi following the Komaki Campaign (1584), Narishige went to Kyoto as a hostage. In 1590 he attended the Siege of Odawara Castle and was married to a daughter of Toki (Saitô) Sadamasa. After service in the Battle of Sekigahara (1600) Narishige was given a fief in Ômi Province and later served in the Osaka Campaigns (1614, 1615).

Honda Hirotaka
Tokugawa retainer
Bungo no kami

Hirotaka was a son of Honda Nobushige. He served at the Battle of Nagashino in 1575 and the following year assisted in the capture of Inui Castle in Tôtômi Province. He commanded the defenses at Kobata during the Komaki Campaign (1584) and in 1587 was sent to join the Toyotomi army in its invasion of Kyushu. There he distinguished himself at the brief battle for Ganjaku Castle in Buzen Province.
Son: Yasushige

Honda Yasushige
Tokugawa retainer
Bungo no kami

Yasushige was the eldest son of Honda Hirotaka and was granted the use of 'Yasu' in his name from Tokugawa Ieyasu when he came of age. Along with his father, he was present for the siege of Kakegawa Castle (in Tôtômi Province) in 1569 and also fought at Mikatagahara in 1572 and in the Komaki Campaign (1584). In 1590, following the Odawara Campaign, he was given Shirai in Kôzuke Province. He was appointed one of Tokugawa Hidetada's councilors while Ieyasu went to Kyushu during the 1st Korean Campaign (1593-94). In 1601 he would be moved to Okazaki in Mikawa Province and given a fief worth 50,000 koku.
Son: Yasunori

HONDA (Satsuma)

The Honda of Satsuma Province claimed descent from Kammu Heishi's 7th son. Originally from the eastern provinces, they came to serve the Shimazu family when that clan was established at the end of the 12th Century. They were not directly connected to the Honda of Mikawa Province, although some relation has been suggested.

Honda Chikasada
Shimazu retainer
Shimotsuke no kami

Chikasada was one of Shimazu Yoshihisa's chief retainers and held Yoshida Castle. He was present for many of Yoshihisa's battles.


HONGO Tokihisa
Shimazu retainer

The Hongo mon

Tokihisa served the Shimazu family of Satsuma. He defeated an attack by the Kimotsuki in 1573 and put down a rebellion of former Itô retainers in 1578. He acted as a hostage to Hideyoshi after the latter invaded Kyushu in 1587. He was afterwards installed at Miyanojo in Satsuma Province.
Son: Tadatora

Hongo Tadatora
Shimazu retainer
Sanuki no kami

Tadatora was the second son of Hongo Tokihisa. He assisted his father in repulsing an attack by the Kimotsuki family in 1573 and went on to hold Kunamoto in Higo Province. He fought in the Shimazu's wars with the Ryûzôji and Ôtomo and fought in the 1st Korean Campaign (1592-93). He died of illness at Karashima.

HONJÔ Shigenaga
Uesugi retainer
Echizen no kami, Yamato no kami

Shigenaga was the son of Honjô Fusanaga. He entered the service of Uesugi Kenshin sometime prior to 1558 and held Honjô Castle. He was active in the fighting around Kawanakajima and in the Kanto though he disobeyed Kenshin on a number of occasions: he submitted with his lands to Takeda Shingen in 1568 but was later forgiven - only to defy Kenshin over the war against the Oda in 1577. After Kenshin's death, Shigenaga supported Uesugi Kagekatsu in the Ôtate no ran and fought against the Oda in Etchû (1582). He went on to serve in battle against the Mogami in 1588 and when the Uesugi were moved to Aizu in 1598, he was established at Fukushima Castle. He was also known as Sôrin.
Sons: Yorinaga, Yoshikatsu, Nagafusa, Hisanaga

Honjô Hidetsuna
(Honjô Seishichirô)

Hidetsuna at first held Tochio Castle in Echigo Province. He participated in Uesugi campaigns in the Kanto in 1573 and was given Numata Castle in Kôzuke Province in 1574. After Uesugi Kenshin's death, Hidetsuna gave his loyalty to Uesugi Kagetora. When Kagekatsu came to attack Hidetsuna as a result, the latter fled and fell out of sight.

HONJÔ Tsunemitsu
Amako, Môri retainer
Etchû no kami

Tsunemitsu held Yamabuki Castle in Iwami Province. He was originally a vassal of the Amako, but defected to the Môri in 1563. Yamabuki was important to the control of the Iwami silver mines.

HORI Hidemasa
(Hori Kyûtaro, Hori Kudarô)
Oda, Toyotomi retainer

The Hori mon

Hidemasa was the eldest son of Hori Masashige. He was from Owari Province and began his career in the service of Oda Nobunaga. In 1581 he was ordered to conduct a land survey in Izumi Province. During the course of the survey the Makinoji (a branch temple of the Kongobuji of Mt. Koyo) took up arms, prompting Hidemasa to attack the temple and burn it. Later that year he was awarded Obama Castle in Wakasa and in June 1582 joined in Toyotomi Hideyoshi's attack on Akechi Mitsuhide. Hidemasa fought at Yamazaki and soon afterwards defeated Akechi Mitsuharu at Uchide-hama, near Ôtsu. He went on to secure Sakamoto Castle, which became part of a large fief he was awarded in Ômi worth 90,000 koku. Hidemasa participated in the Komaki Campaign (1584) on Hideyoshi's side, and led 3,000 men at the Battle of Nagakute. He joined the ToyotÔmi army besieging Odawara Castle in 1590 but died in camp during the campaign.
Sons: Hideharu, Chikanaga (Chikayoshi; 1580-1637), Yoshitada, Masanari

Hori Hideharu
Toyotomi retainer

Hideharu was the eldest son of Hori Hidemasa. He was given Kasugayama in Echigo Province after his father's death and in 1598 his domain was expanded to 350,000 koku around Takato. Just prior to the Sekigahara Campaign (August -October, 1600) Hideharu squabbled with Uesugi Kagekatsu of neighboring Aizu, although he was to play only a small role in the 'Eastern' campaign to defeat the Uesugi. He died at a young age, prompting some to question whether Ieyasu may have had a hand in his demise. His son, Tadatoshi, was accused of incompetence in 1610, lost his fief at Takato in Echigo Province, and was banished to Mutsu Province.
Sons: Tadatoshi

HORIE Kagetada
Asakura retainer

Kagetada succeeded his grandfather Kagezane and was a vassal of the Asakura. He led 1,000 troops in Asakura Norikage's attack on Daishôji in Kaga Province in 1555. Kagetada grew in power within the Asakura retainer band and drew the suspicion of Asakura Yoshikage, who in 1567 accused Kagetaka of treasonous behavior. After a military confrontation between the two families, peace was made and Kagetada went off to Noto Province in retirement. He returned to active life and Echizen in 1574, when that province was in the throes of an ikko-ikki insurrection. When Oda Nobunaga regained control of Echizen (which he had taken from the Asakura in 1573), he accepted the services of the Horie and gave Kagetada's son a fief. Nobunaga reversed his decision in 1576, however, and ordered Kagetada and his son to commit suicide.
Son: Toshishige

HORIO Yoshiharu
Toyotomi retainer

Horio served Hideyoshi from the early 1560's onward. He was involved in the capture of Inabayama from the Saito in 1567 and accompanied Hideyoshi to Ômi Province when the latter received a fief there in 1574. Yoshiharu led a contingent of troops at Yamazaki in 1582 and was awarded Hamamatsu in 1590. He was nominally aligned with Tokugawa Ieyasu in the Sekigahara Campaign (1600) but took little or no part in the actual fighting. In the aftermath of the Tokugawa victory, he was given a 235,000-koku fief at Matsue in Izumo Province. Yasuharu, a good-natured individual, was perhaps the only Sengoku Period general to receive the nickname Hotoke, or 'Buddha'.
Son: Tadauji (Izumo no kami; 1575-1604)


The Horiuchi were a family from Kii Province whose origins are obscure beyond a number of theories, including one connecting them to Minamoto Tameyoshi. During the early part of the Sengoku Period, Horiuchi Ujitora took advantage of the decline of the Hatakeyama to expand in the Kumano district of Kii and in the process absorbed the local Arima family. Ujitora's son Ujiyoshi later served Toyotomi Hideyoshi but was dispossessed after Sekigahara (1600).

Horiuchi Ujiyoshi
(Horiuchi Shigetoshi, Horiuchi Shinjirô)
Kii warlord, Oda, Toyotomi retainer
Awa no kami

Ujiyoshi is believed to have been the second son of Horiuchi Ujitora, though one theory has that he was actually Ujitora's younger brother. Ujiyoshi was at first adopted into the Arima family but when Ujitora died without an heir, he returned to rule the Horiuchi. The Mô of western Honshu tried to win him to their side but he joined Oda Nobunaga instead and received an income of 20,000 koku as a result. After Nobunaga died, Ujiyoshi joined Toyotomi Hideyoshi and fought at the Battle of Yamazaki (1582) and the Siege of Odawara (1590). He married a daughter of Kûki Yoshitaka and was convinced by Yoshitaka to side with Ishida Mitsunari during the Sekigahara Campaign (1600). After Mitsunari's defeat, Ujiyoshi was dispossessed and entered the custody of Kato Kiyomasa. He died at Kunamoto in Higo Province. Like his father-in-law Yoshikata, Ujiyoshi was skilled in the command of naval forces. His son Ujihisa would fight for Toyotomi Hideyori at Osaka Castle (1614, 1615) but was forgiven in the aftermath in light of his position as a personal escort to Sen Hime.
Son: Ujihisa

HOSHINO Masatoshi
Takeda, Tokugawa retainer

Masatoshi held Takatô in Shinano Province and became a retainer of Takeda Shingen. After the fall of the Takeda, he joined Tokugawa Ieyasu and died of old age in 1593. He was accomplished in the use of the spear and for this was nicknamed yari danjô.

Son: Masanao

Hoshino Masanao
Takeda, Tokugawa retainer
Danjô, Echizen no kami

Masanao was the son of Hoshino Masatoshi and held Takatô Castle in Shinano Province. He first served Takeda Shingen, then Takeda Katsuyori. Following the defeat of the Takeda in 1582, Masanao briefly served Hôjô Ujinao but later switched his loyalties to Toyotomi Hideyoshi and received the castle of Tako in Shimôsa Province. After 1600, he went back to Takato (now held by his son Masamitsu) and died there in 1601.
Son: Masamitsu

Hoshino Masamitsu
Tokugawa retainer
Higo no kami

Masamitsu was the son of Hoshino Masanao and after the Sekigahara Campaign received Takato in Shinano Province (1600). He served at the seiges of Osaka Castle (1614, 1615) and later adopted the 4th son of the shôgun Tokugawa Hidetada.


The Hosokawa mon

The Hosokawa were descended from Ashikaga Yoshiyasu (1126-1157), whose great-grandson Yoshisue took the name Hosokawa. Yoshisue's own great-grandson Yoriharu (1299-1352) was a staunch supporter of Ashikaga Takauji during the early Nambokucho Period. As a result the Hosokawa became influential under the Ashikaga shôguns as a powerful shûgo family. Hosokawa Yoriyuki (1329 - 1392) served as the first kanrei (Deputy/Vice-shôgun) and acted as guardian and counsel to Ashikaga Yoshimitsu. Hosokawa Katsumoto (1430-1473) was one of the most powerful figures in Kyoto politics in his day and shûgo of much of Shikoku Island. In part as a result of a succession dispute surrounding shôgun Ashikaga Yoshimasa, Katsumoto and Yamana Mochitoyo, another powerful shûgo, became involved in a conflict that consumed Kyoto and would become known as the Ônin War (1467-77). In the aftermath of this struggle, which is often marked as the opening of the Sengoku Period, the Hosokawa managed to retain their hold on Kyoto into the 16th Century. Internal struggles and the rise of the Miyoshi, formerly Hosokawa retainers, led to the eclipse of the Hosokawa by 1550. One branch of the family survived to much success under Hosokawa Fujitaka and his son Tadaoki. Thanks to their efforts, the Hosokawa family would endure as daimyô to the end of the Edo Period.

Hosokawa Masamoto
Deputy Shôgun

Masamoto was a son of Hosokawa Katsumoto and was appointed kanrei in 1486. He lost the post for a brief period to Hatakeyama Masanaga but recovered his position. When the shôgun Ashikaga Yoshihisa died childless in 1489, Masamoto supported the nomination of Ashikaga Yoshizumi as successor. In the event, Ashikaga Yoshitane was chosen. Masamoto was concerned that, given Yoshitane's closeness with Hatakeyama Masanaga and his own objections to Yoshitane's rise, the post of kanrei would be returned to Masanaga. In 1493 Yoshitane had led troops to support Hatakeyama Masanaga in his struggles with a rival branch of the Hatakeyama. Masamoto committed forces to the rival Hatakeyama and Masanaga and Yoshitane were defeated. Masanaga took his own life and Yoshitane was returned to Kyoto as a prisoner. Masamotyo sent Yoshitane into exile and replaced him with Ashikaga Yoshizumi, whom Masamoto went on to use as a puppet. That same year, he launched a campaign against his opponents within Yamashiro Province. Being childless, Masamoto (who is thought to have been a homosexual) adopted a number of sons (Sumiyuki and Sumimoto). The Hosokawa retainers began to align with one of the young men against the other. In 1504 Masamoto destroyed the rebellious Yakushiji Motoichi (a supporter of Sumimoto) and in 1506 was threatened by an army led by Miyoshi Yukinaga (another of Sumimoto's supporters). In 1507, Kôsai Motonaga, a friend to Sumiyuki, betrayed Masamoto and along with Sumiyuki attacked Masamoto's home. Masamoto was murdered while taking a bath.
Sons (adopted): Sumiyuki, Sumimoto, Takakuni

Hosokawa Sumiyuki
Awa warlord

Sumiyuki was a son of Kujô Masamoto and was adopted by Hosokawa Masamoto. Masamoto intended at first to make Sumiyuki his heir but when this caused dissatisfaction within the Hosokawa (who objected in view of Sumiyuki's noble blood), he came to favor a younger adopted son, Sumimoto. Sumiyuki was supported in his claim for the inheritance by Kôsai Motonaga and the two plotted against Masamoto. Masamoto was surprised and murdered in his bath in 7/1507. Around a month later, however, Sumiyuki and Motonaga were attacked by allies of Sumimoto and defeated. Sumiyuki committed suicide.

Hosokawa Sumimoto
Deputy Shôgun
1489 -1520

Sumimoto was a son of Hosokawa Yoshiharu and an adopted son of Hosokawa Masamoto. After Masamoto was killed, Sumimoto fled from his brother Sumiyuki and took up refuge with Rokkaku Takayori of Ômi. A powerful Hosokawa vassal, Miyoshi Nagateru, raised troops in Settsu and destroyed Sumiyuki in the young Sumimoto's name. Though practically still a child, Sumimoto was named kanrei and inherited all of the Hosokawa's holdings on Shikoku. Masamoto's 3rd son Takakuni and the shôgun he deposed, Yoshitane, had fled to Suo and garnered the support of Ôuchi Yoshioki, who raised an army and marched east. Sumimoto and his followers had intended to face Yoshioki in Settsu, but fled to Shikoku when they caught a glimpse of the large Ôuchi army (1508). Sumimoto returned to the Kyoto area in 1511 but was defeated by the Ôuchi at Funaokayama and fled once more. In 1519, after Ôuchi had left the capital, Sumimoto attempted another return to Kyoto, but was defeated by Hosokawa Takakuni and the Rokkaku. He withdrew back to Shikoku and died the next year.
Son: Harumoto

Hosokawa Takakuni
Deputy Shôgun

Takakuni was a son of Hosokawa Masaharu. He was adopted by Hosokawa Masamoto, though how formal this adoption was is unclear. After Masamoto was assassinated in 1507, Takakuni fled the capital and went to Suo, where he enlisted the aid of Ôuchi Yoshioki. Ôuchi, already a patron of deposed shôgun Yoshitane, gathered an army in 1508 and marched on Kyoto. Takakuni assisted Ôuchi Yoshioki at the Battle of Funaokayama, where Hosokawa Masataka and Sumimoto suffered a defeat (1511). In 1518 Ôuchi returned to Suo and Takakuni was afterwards constantly busy with threats and plots against him, from both within and without his own family. He was forced out of Kyoto on a number of occasions. In response to Takakuni's heavy-handed treatment, Yoshitane called on the Hatakeyama for assistance, an act for which Takakuni ordered the shôgun into exile. Once Yoshitane was gone, Takakuni made a son of Yoshizumi, Yoshiharu, the shôgun and proceeded to rule through him. His nephew Harumoto proved his greatest opponent, and handed him a decisive defeat at Amagaseki in 1531. Takakuni committed suicide soon afterwards.
Son: Ujitsuna

Hosokawa Harumoto
Deputy Shôgun

Harumoto was the son of Hosokawa Sumimoto. Following the defeat and suicide of Takakuni, Harumoto assumed the rank of kanrei and chose to retain Ashikaga Yoshiharu as shôgun. Harumoto found himself challenged by Miyoshi Motonaga of Settsu, a growing power and the head of a family that had drawn away from the Hosokawa in recent years. Though Miyoshi was a formidable opponent, Harumoto allied with the warlike monks of the Ishiyama Honganji and managed to trap Motonaga and force him to commit suicide (1532). Despite Motonaga's demise, the Miyoshi continued to harass Harumoto, growing in strength even as the Hosokawa weakened. In addition, the Hosokawa and Honganji parted ways soon after Motonaga's death and Harumoto attacked the Ishiyama Honganji in 1533. Harumoto's greatest rival proved to be Miyoshi Nagayoshi (otherwise known as Miyoshi Chokei), Motonaga's son and a gifted schemer and politician. He was also forced to battle a relative, his cousin Hosokawa Ujitsuna, who was envious of his position. In 1545 shôgun Yoshitane fled Kyoto, abdicating in favor of his son Yoshiteru. Harumoto shifted his allegiance to Yoshiteru but began to lose his influence with the young shôgun through the activities of the Miyoshi. Miyoshi Nagayoshi and Matsunaga Hisahide convinced Yoshiteru to distance himself from Harumoto, and in 1549 the latter was forced to flee the capital. Harumoto continued to fight with the Miyoshi, and in August 1553 he attacked Kyoto and burned much of it. He next attempted unsuccessfully to convince Ashikaga Yoshiharu to come out of retirement. He was finally captured by Chokei in 1559 but was allowed to retire to a temple (albeit under guard) in Settsu and died four years later. A man of some military accomplishment, Harumoto was said to have been an early proponent of the use of firearms.
Son: Nobuyoshi (d.1615)

Hosokawa Ujitsuna
Deputy Shôgun

Ujitsuna was an adopted son of Hosokawa Takakuni. He challanged Hosokawa Harumoto for the post of kanrei. He also clashed with Miyoshi Chokei but allied with him to defeat Miyoshi Masanaga in 1548. He later served as nominal kanrei during Miyoshi Chokei's domination of Kyoto affairs.

Hosokawa Fujitaka
(Hosokawa Yüsai)
Ashikaga, Oda, Toyotomi retainer

Fujitaka was the son of Mibuchi Harusada and was adopted by Hosokawa Mototsune. Fujitaka was a member of the Ashikaga court and during his service to Yoshiteru practiced linked verse with Satomura Joha, the noted renga master. In 1565 Yoshiteru was assassinated and Hosokawa left the capital, joining Yoshiteru's younger brother Ashikaga Yoshiaki in his search for a patron. After Oda Nobunaga established Yoshiaki in Kyoto (1568), Fujitaka continued to act as the new shôgun's advisor but remained in Oda's service when Yoshiaki was driven away in 1573. In 1580 Fujitaka was given a 110,700-koku fief in Tango Province, which he had to take from the Isshiki, and would reside there for the rest of his career. When Akechi Mitsuhide destroyed Nobunaga in 1582, Fujitaka joined Toyotomi Hideyoshi even though his son Tadaoki was married to Mitsuhide's daughter. He later became a close confident to Hideyoshi and acted as a cultural assistant, advising Hideyoshi in the ways of etiquette and verse. Fujitaka accompanied Hideyoshi in the Kyushu Campaign (1587) and the Odawara Campaign (1590). After Hideyoshi's death in 1598 he retired to his studies but was approached in 1600 by Ishida Mitsunari's followers who asked for his support against Tokugawa Ieyasu. It happened that as a result of one of Ishida's schemes, Fujitaka's daughter-in-law (the wife of Tadaoki) was killed at Osaka. This and various other factors led Fujitaka to shun Mitsunari and side with Tokugawa Ieyasu. When the Ishida and Tokugawa went to war, Fujitaka was quickly surrounded in Tanabe Castle, his main residence in Tango (August 1600). Luckily, the 'Western' commanders responsible for attacking Tanabe respected Fujitaka and so made little effort to reduce the castle. Fujitaka nonetheless feared for a collection of priceless works of poetry and history he had with him in the castle and appealed to the Court to send Meada Gen-I to come and receive these items lest they be damaged. The request was readily granted along with an Imperial suggestion that Fujitaka surrender. Fujitaka refused and in the end the Emperor sent an Imperial edict ordering Hosokawa to lay down his arms. Hosokawa had little choice but to comply and opened Tanabe's gates on 19 October, two days before the actual battle of Sekigahara and too late for the besiegers to join Mitsunari's main army. After that campaign ended, Fujitaka went back into quiet retirement. A man famous for his learning and verse-composition, Fujitaka composed numerous works of poetry, history, and literary review, including a number of well-regarded studies of the Tale of Ise. He was considered the foremost authority of his time on waka, as well as something of an authority on the history of Kyoto.
Sons: Tadaoki, Okimoto (d.1618), Yukitaka, Takayuki

Hosokawa Tadaoki
(Hosokawa Sansai)
Oda, Toyotomi retainer
Etchû no kami

Tadaoki was the eldest son of Hosokawa Fujitaka and married the daughter of Akechi Mitsuhide around 1580. He assisted his father in fighting the Isshiki in Tango Province. Less then a week prior to the death of Oda Nobunaga in June 1582 Tadaoki brought down Isshiki Yoshikiyo's Yumigi Castle. He sent his wife back to Mitsuhide when the latter destroyed Nobunaga and refused to provide him with assistance. At Toyotomi Hideyoshi's request, Tadaoki afterwards took his wife (later known as Hosokawa Gracie) back into his household. He was present on the Toyotomi side at the Komaki Campaign (1584) and saw service in the Odawara Campaign (1590), assisting in the attack on Nirayama Castle in Izu Province. He spent time during the Korean Campaigns on Hideyoshi's staff on Kyushu. During the 1590's he became close to Tokugawa Ieyasu, who gave him money to cover debts with Toyotomi Hidetsugu. In the months leading up to the Sekigahara Campaign, Tadaoki gave his support to Ieyasu and suffered the death of his wife when Ishida Mitsunari attempted to take the wives of notable Tokugawa adherents hostage in Osaka. At the Battle of Sekigahara (1600) he commanded 5,000 men in the Tokugawa vanguard and clashed with the forces of Shima Sakon. He was afterwards given a 370,00-koku fief (Kokura, Buzen Province) and went on to serve at the Osaka Winter and Summer Campaigns. For his services, he was give an enormous 540,000-koku fief at Kunamoto in Higo Province in 1632. Tadaoki was a man of some learning though he also possessed, according to letters written by his wife, a fierce temper.
Sons: Tadatoshi (1586-1641), Tatsutaka, Tadataka, Okitaka

Hosokawa Gracie
Wife of Hosokawa Tadaoki

Gracie (or Donna Gracie) was the 3rd daughter of Akechi Mitsuhide and was married to Hosokawa Tadaoki. When her father killed Oda Nobunaga, Gracie was for a time confined and was only taken back by her husband thanks to the intervention of Hashiba (Toyotomi) Hideyoshi. According to tradition, Gracie was introduced to Christianity by Takayama Ukon, and pursued it while Tadaoki was away fighting in Korea (1592-93, 1597-98), eventually being baptized. In 1600 she was left in Osaka Castle by her husband as one of a number of wives to act as hostages by notable Tokugawa loyalists. Soon afterwards, Ishida Mitsunari attempted to seize the women to influence their husbands, and in the attempt Gracie was killed - either on her orders or those of her husband.

copyright 2005 F. W. Seal