A report on Ashikaga Takauji

Portrait traditionally identified as that of Ashikaga Takauji
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Tomb of Ashikaga Takauji at Tōji-in in Kyoto

The founder and first shōgun of the Ashikaga shogunate.

- Ashikaga Takauji

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Kitabatake Chikafusa, as drawn by Japanese painter Kikuchi Yosai

Kitabatake Chikafusa

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Japanese court noble and writer of the 14th century who supported the Southern Court in the Nanboku-cho period, serving as advisor to five Emperors.

Japanese court noble and writer of the 14th century who supported the Southern Court in the Nanboku-cho period, serving as advisor to five Emperors.

Kitabatake Chikafusa, as drawn by Japanese painter Kikuchi Yosai

In particular, he disliked Ashikaga Takauji, the first Ashikaga shogun, who had originally supported Go-Daigo's claim to the Throne, but who ultimately headed the Northern Court and sought to destroy all who supported the Emperor's Southern Court.

Emperor Go-Kōgon

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The 4th of the Emperors of Northern Court during the Period of the Northern and Southern Courts.

The 4th of the Emperors of Northern Court during the Period of the Northern and Southern Courts.

Japanese Imperial kamon — a stylized chrysanthemum blossom

In 1351, Ashikaga Takauji briefly returned to the allegiance of the Southern Dynasty, causing the Southern Court to briefly consolidate control of the Imperial Line.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

Jōwa (Muromachi period)

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Japanese era or nengō which was promulgated by the more militarily powerful of two Imperial rival courts during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts (南北朝時代).

Japanese era or nengō which was promulgated by the more militarily powerful of two Imperial rival courts during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts (南北朝時代).

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

This illegitimate Northern Court (北朝) had been established in Kyoto by Ashikaga Takauji.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

Kannō

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Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Jōwa and before Bunna.

Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Jōwa and before Bunna.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

This illegitimate Northern Court (北朝) had been established in Kyoto by Ashikaga Takauji.

Kikuchi clan

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Powerful daimyō family of Higo, Kyūshū.

Powerful daimyō family of Higo, Kyūshū.

An early example of a mon based on a design of feathers appears on this white hata jirushi of the Kikuchi family.
Fujiwara no Noritaka, founder of the clan, called himself Kikuchi Noritaka
Portrait of Kikuchi Takanao sitting on a box with his two feathered mon
Kikuchi Takefusa sitting on the wall at Hakata Bay waiting for the Mongolian fleet.
Kikuchi Taketoki depicted by Kikuchi Yōsai.
Kikuchi Takeshige.
Comprising a series of buildings and watchtowers set on a hilltop with a commanding view of the surrounding area, the remains of the 14th century Kikuchi Castle, seat of the Kikuchi clan, are currently undergoing restoration.
Portrait of Kikuchi Takemitsu
Kikuchi Yoshiyuki
Click to see larger image

In 1335 Ashikaga Takauji attacked Emperor Go-Daigo so Takeshige and his brother Takeyasu joined forces with Nitta Yoshitada repelling the Ashikaga who retreated to Kyōto.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

Bunna

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Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Kannō and before Enbun. This period spanned the years from September 1352 through March 1356.

Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Kannō and before Enbun. This period spanned the years from September 1352 through March 1356.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

This illegitimate Northern Court (北朝) had been established in Kyoto by Ashikaga Takauji.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

Kōei

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Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Ryakuō and before Jōwa.

Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Ryakuō and before Jōwa.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

This illegitimate Northern Court (北朝) had been established in Kyoto by Ashikaga Takauji.

Tatarahama Battlefield

Battle of Tatarahama (1336)

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One of many battles constituting the Nanboku-chō Wars in Japan, in which two rival Imperial Courts battled for legitimacy and control of the country.

One of many battles constituting the Nanboku-chō Wars in Japan, in which two rival Imperial Courts battled for legitimacy and control of the country.

Tatarahama Battlefield

Shōgun Ashikaga Takauji, arriving in Munakata, a short distance away, at this time in early April, learned of the siege of Dazaifu and the death of Shōni Sadatsune.

Taiheiki

Taiheiki

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Japanese historical epic (see gunki monogatari) written in the late 14th century and covers the period from 1319 to 1367.

Japanese historical epic (see gunki monogatari) written in the late 14th century and covers the period from 1319 to 1367.

Taiheiki

It deals primarily with the Nanboku-chō, the period of war between the Northern Court of Ashikaga Takauji in Kyoto, and the Southern Court of Emperor Go-Daigo in Yoshino.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

Enbun

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Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Bunna and before Kōan.

Japanese era name (年号, nengō, lit. year name) of the Northern Court during the Era of Northern and Southern Courts after Bunna and before Kōan.

The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-chō period were in relatively close proximity, but geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:

This illegitimate Northern Court (北朝) had been established in Kyoto by Ashikaga Takauji.