Sesshō and Kampaku

In Japan, Sesshō (摂政) was a title given to a regent who was named to act on behalf of either a child Emperor before his coming of age, or an empress regnant. The Kanpaku (関白) was theoretically a sort of chief advisor for the Emperor, but was the title of both first secretary and regent who assists an adult Emperor. During a certain period in the Heian period, they were the effective rulers of Japan. There was little, if any, effective difference between the two titles, and several individuals merely changed titles as child Emperors grew to adulthood, or adult Emperors retired or died and were replaced by child Emperors. The two titles were collectively known as Sekkan (摂関), and the families that exclusively held the titles were called Sekkan-ke or Sekkan family. After the Heian period, shogunates took over the power.

Both sesshō and kanpaku were styled as denka (or tenga in historical pronunciation; 殿下; translated as "(Imperial) Highness"), as were Imperial princes and princesses.

A retired kanpaku is called Taikō (太閤), which came to commonly refer to Toyotomi Hideyoshi.

Japan Sessyo Flag
Imperial Standard of the Regent


In earlier times, only members of the Imperial Family could be appointed sesshō. The Kojiki reported that Emperor Ōjin was assisted by his mother, Empress Jingū, but it is doubtful if it is a historical fact. The first historical sesshō was Prince Shōtoku who assisted Empress Suiko.

The Fujiwara clan was the primary holder of the kampaku and sesshō titles. More precisely, those titles were held by the Fujiwara Hokke (northern Fujiwara family) and its descendants, to which Fujiwara no Yoshifusa belonged.

In 866, Fujiwara no Yoshifusa became sesshō. He was the first not to belong to the Imperial house. In 876, Fujiwara no Mototsune, the nephew and adopted son of Yoshifusa, was appointed to the newly created office of kampaku.

After Fujiwara no Michinaga and Fujiwara no Yorimichi, their descendants held those two offices exclusively. In the 12th century, there were five families among the descendants of Yorimichi called Sekke: Konoe family, Kujō family, Ichijō family, Takatsukasa family and Nijō family. Both the Konoe and Kujō family were descendants of Yorimichi, through Fujiwara no Tadamichi. The other three families were derived from either the Konoe or Kujō families. Until the Meiji Restoration of 1868, those five families held those title exclusively with the two exceptions of Toyotomi Hideyoshi and his nephew Toyotomi Hidetsugu.

The offices and titles of sesshō and kampaku were abolished by the declaration of the Imperial Restoration in 1868 during the Meiji Restoration in order to reorganize the government structure. The office and title of sesshō was stipulated under the former Imperial Household Law in 1889 and also under the new Imperial Household Law in 1948. Under these laws, the officeholder of sesshō is restricted to a member of the Imperial family. Crown Prince Hirohito, before becoming Emperor Shōwa, was sesshō from 1921 to 1926 for the mentally disabled Emperor Taishō. He was called sesshō-no-miya (摂政宮, "the Prince-Regent").


The following is a list of sesshō and kampaku in the order of succession.[1] The list is not exhaustive:

Sesshō Kanpaku Reign Monarch
Prince Shōtoku 593–622 Empress Suiko
Fujiwara no Yoshifusa[2] 858–872 Emperor Seiwa
Fujiwara no Mototsune 872–880 Emperor Seiwa, Emperor Yōzei
Fujiwara no Mototsune 880–890 Emperor Yōzei, Emperor Kōkō, Emperor Uda
Fujiwara no Tokihira 909[3] Emperor Daigo
Fujiwara no Tadahira 930–941 Emperor Suzaku
Fujiwara no Tadahira 941–949 Emperor Suzaku, Emperor Murakami
Fujiwara no Saneyori[4] 967–69 Emperor Reizei
Fujiwara no Saneyori 969–970 Emperor En'yū
Fujiwara no Koretada 970–972 Emperor En'yū
Fujiwara no Kanemichi[5] 972–977 Emperor En'yū
Fujiwara no Yoritada 977–986 Emperor En'yū, Emperor Kazan
Fujiwara no Kaneie 986–990 Emperor Ichijō
Fujiwara no Kaneie May 5 (lunar calendar), 990 – May 8, 990 Emperor Ichijō
Fujiwara no Michitaka May 8, 990 – May 26, 990 Emperor Ichijō
Fujiwara no Michitaka 990–993 Emperor Ichijō
Fujiwara no Michitaka 993–995 Emperor Ichijō
Fujiwara no Michikane April 28, 995 – May 8, 995 Emperor Ichijō
Fujiwara no Michinaga 1016–1017 Emperor Go-Ichijō
Fujiwara no Yorimichi 1017–1019 Emperor Go-Ichijō
Fujiwara no Yorimichi[6] 1020–1068 Emperor Go-Ichijō, Emperor Go-Suzaku, Emperor Go-Reizei
Fujiwara no Norimichi 1068–1075 Emperor Go-Sanjō, Emperor Shirakawa
Fujiwara no Morozane 1075–1086 Emperor Shirakawa
Fujiwara no Morozane 1086–1090 Emperor Horikawa
Fujiwara no Morozane 1090–1094 Emperor Horikawa
Fujiwara no Moromichi 1094–1099 Emperor Horikawa
Fujiwara no Tadazane 1105–1107 Emperor Horikawa
Fujiwara no Tadazane 1107–1113 Emperor Toba
Fujiwara no Tadazane 1113–1121 Emperor Toba
Fujiwara no Tadamichi 1121–1123 Emperor Toba
Fujiwara no Tadamichi 1123–1129 Emperor Sutoku
Fujiwara no Tadamichi 1129–1141 Emperor Sutoku
Fujiwara no Tadamichi 1141–1150 Emperor Konoe
Fujiwara no Tadamichi 1150–1158 Emperor Konoe, Emperor Go-Shirakawa
Konoe Motozane 1158–1165 Emperor Nijō
Konoe Motozane 1165–1166 Emperor Rokujō
Fujiwara no Motofusa 1166–1172 Emperor Rokujō, Emperor Takakura
Fujiwara no Motofusa 1172–1179 Emperor Takakura
Konoe Motomichi 1179–1180 Emperor Takakura
Konoe Motomichi 1180–1183 Emperor Antoku
Matsudono Moroie 1183–1184 Emperor Antoku
Konoe Motomichi 1184–1186 Emperor Antoku, Emperor Go-Toba
Kujō Kanezane 1186–1191 Emperor Go-Toba
Kujō Kanezane 1191–1196 Emperor Go-Toba
Konoe Motomichi 1196–1198 Emperor Tsuchimikado
Konoe Motomichi 1198–1202 Emperor Tsuchimikado
Kujō Yoshitsune 1202–1206 Emperor Tsuchimikado
Konoe Iezane[7] 1206 Emperor Tsuchimikado
Konoe Iezane[8] 1206–1221 Emperor Tsuchimikado, Emperor Juntoku
Kujō Michiie[9] 1221 Emperor Chūkyō
Konoe Iezane.[10] 1221–1223 Emperor Go-Horikawa
Konoe Iezane[11] 1223–1228 Emperor Go-Horikawa
Kujō Michiie 1228–1231 Emperor Go-Horikawa
Kujō Norizane 1231–1232 Emperor Go-Horikawa
Kujō Norizane 1232–1235 Emperor Shijō
Kujō Michiie 1235–1237 Emperor Shijō
Konoe Kanetsune 1237–1242 Emperor Shijō
Konoe Kanetsune 1242 Emperor Go-Saga
Nijō Yoshizane 1242–1246 Emperor Go-Saga
Ichijō Sanetsune 1246 Emperor Go-Saga
Ichijō Sanetsune 1246–1247 Emperor Go-Fukakusa
Konoe Kanetsune 1247–1252 Emperor Go-Fukakusa
Takatsukasa Kanehira 1252–1254 Emperor Go-Fukakusa
Takatsukasa Kanehira 1254–1261 Emperor Go-Fukakusa, Emperor Kameyama
Nijō Yoshizane 1261–1265 Emperor Kameyama
Ichijō Sanetsune 1265–1267 Emperor Kameyama
Konoe Motohira 1267–1268 Emperor Kameyama
Takatsukasa Mototada 1268–1273 Emperor Kameyama
Kujō Tadaie 1273–1274 Emperor Kameyama
Kujō Tadaie 1274 Emperor Go-Uda
Ichijō Ietsune 1274–1275 Emperor Go-Uda
Takatsukasa Kanehira 1275–1278 Emperor Go-Uda
Takatsukasa Kanehira 1278–1287 Emperor Go-Uda
Nijō Morotada 1287–1289 Emperor Go-Uda, Emperor Fushimi
Konoe Iemoto 1289–1291 Emperor Fushimi
Kujō Tadanori 1291–1293 Emperor Fushimi
Konoe Iemoto 1293–1296 Emperor Fushimi
Takatsukasa Kanetada 1296–1298 Emperor Fushimi
Takatsukasa Kanetada 1298 Emperor Go-Fushimi
Nijō Kanemoto 1298–1300 Emperor Go-Fushimi
Nijō Kanemoto 1300–1305 Emperor Go-Fushimi, Emperor Go-Nijō
Kujō Moronori 1305–1308 Emperor Go-Nijō
Kujō Moronori 1308 Emperor Hanazono
Takatsukasa Fuyuhira 1308–1311 Emperor Hanazono
Takatsukasa Fuyuhira 1311–1313 Emperor Hanazono
Konoe Iehira 1313–1315 Emperor Hanazono
Takatsukasa Fuyuhira 1315–1316 Emperor Hanazono
Nijō Michihira 1316–1318 Emperor Hanazono, Emperor Go-Daigo
Ichijō Uchitsune 1318–1323 Emperor Go-Daigo
Kujō Fusazane 1323–1324 Emperor Go-Daigo
Takatsukasa Fuyuhira 1324–1327 Emperor Go-Daigo
Nijō Michihira 1327–1330 Emperor Go-Daigo
Konoe Tsunetada 1330 Emperor Go-Daigo
Takatsukasa Fuyunori 1330–1333 Emperor Go-Daigo, Emperor Kōgon
Konoe Tsunetada 1336–1337 Emperor Kōmyō
Konoe Mototsugu 1337–1338 Emperor Kōmyō
Ichijō Tsunemichi 1338–1342 Emperor Kōmyō
Kujō Michinori 1342 Emperor Kōmyō
Takatsukasa Morohira[12] 1342–1346 Emperor Kōmyō
Nijō Yoshimoto 1346–1358 Emperor Kōmyō, Emperor Sukō, Emperor Go-Kōgon
Kujō Tsunenori 1358–1361 Emperor Go-Kōgon
Konoe Michitsugu 1361–1363 Emperor Go-Kōgon
Nijō Yoshimoto 1363–1367 Emperor Go-Kōgon
Takatsukasa Fuyumichi 1367–1369 Emperor Go-Kōgon
Nijō Moroyoshi 1369–1375 Emperor Go-Kōgon, Emperor Go-En'yū
Kujō Tadamoto 1375–1379 Emperor Go-En'yū
Nijō Morotsugu 1379–1382 Emperor Go-En'yū
Nijō Yoshimoto 1382–1388 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Konoe Kanetsugu 1388 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Nijō Yoshimoto 1388 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Nijō Yoshimoto 1388 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Nijō Morotsugu 1388–1394 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Ichijō Tsunetsugu 1394–1398 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Nijō Morotsugu 1398–1399 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Ichijō Tsunetsugu 1399–1408 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Konoe Tadatsugu 1408–1409 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Nijō Mitsumoto 1409–1410 Emperor Go-Komatsu
Ichijō Tsunetsugu 1410–1418 Emperor Go-Komatsu, Emperor Shōkō
Kujō Mitsuie 1418–1424 Emperor Shōkō
Nijō Mochimoto 1424–1428 Emperor Shōkō
Nijō Mochimoto 1428–1432 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Nijō Kaneyoshi 1432 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Nijō Mochimoto 1432–1433 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Nijō Mochimoto 1433–1445 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Konoe Fusatsugu 1445–1447 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Ichijō Kaneyoshi 1447–1453 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Takatsukasa Fusahira 1454–1455 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Nijō Mochimichi 1455–1458 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Ichijō Norifusa 1458–1463 Emperor Go-Hanazono
Nijō Mochimichi 1463–1467 Emperor Go-Hanazono, Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Ichijō Kaneyoshi 1467–1470 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Nijō Masatsugu 1470–1476 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Kujō Masamoto 1476–1479 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Konoe Masaie 1479–1483 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Takatsukasa Masahira 1483–1487 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Kujō Masatada 1487–1488 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Ichijō Fuyuyoshi 1488–1493 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Konoe Hisamichi 1493–1497 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Nijō Hisamoto 1497 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado
Ichijō Fuyuyoshi 1497–1501 Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado, Emperor Go-Kashiwabara
Kujō Hisatsune 1501–1513 Emperor Go-Kashiwabara
Konoe Hisamichi 1513–1514 Emperor Go-Kashiwabara
Takatsukasa Kanesuke 1514–1518 Emperor Go-Kashiwabara
Nijō Korefusa 1518–1525 Emperor Go-Kashiwabara
Konoe Taneie 1525–1533 Emperor Go-Kashiwabara, Emperor Go-Nara
Kujō Tanemichi 1533–1534 Emperor Go-Nara
Nijō Korefusa 1534–1536 Emperor Go-Nara
Konoe Taneie 1536–1542 Emperor Go-Nara
Takatsukasa Tadafuyu 1542–1545 Emperor Go-Nara
Ichijō Fusamichi 1545–1548 Emperor Go-Nara
Nijō Haruyoshi 1548–1553 Emperor Go-Nara
Ichijō Kanefuyu 1553–1554 Emperor Go-Nara
Konoe Sakihisa 1554–1568 Emperor Go-Nara, Emperor Ōgimachi
Nijō Haruyoshi 1568–1578 Emperor Ōgimachi
Kujō Kanetaka 1578–1581 Emperor Ōgimachi
Ichijō Uchimoto 1581–1585 Emperor Ōgimachi
Nijō Akizane 1585 Emperor Ōgimachi
Toyotomi Hideyoshi 1585–1591 Emperor Ōgimachi, Emperor Go-Yōzei
Toyotomi Hidetsugu 1591–1595 Emperor Go-Yōzei
Kujō Kanetaka 1600–1604 Emperor Go-Yōzei
Konoe Nobutada 1605–1606 Emperor Go-Yōzei
Takatsukasa Nobufusa 1606–1608 Emperor Go-Yōzei
Kujō Yukiie 1608–1612 Emperor Go-Yōzei, Emperor Go-Mizunoo
Takatsukasa Nobuhisa 1612–1615 Emperor Go-Mizunoo
Nijō Akizane 1615–1619 Emperor Go-Mizunoo
Kujō Yukiie 1619–1623 Emperor Go-Mizunoo
Konoe Nobuhiro 1623–1629 Emperor Go-Mizunoo
Ichijō Akiyoshi 1629 Emperor Go-Mizunoo
Ichijō Akiyoshi 1629–1635 Empress Meishō
Nijō Yasumichi 1635–1647 Empress Meishō, Emperor Go-Kōmyō
Kujō Michifusa 1647 Emperor Go-Kōmyō
Ichijō Akiyoshi 1647 Emperor Go-Kōmyō
Ichijō Akiyoshi 1647–1651 Emperor Go-Kōmyō
Konoe Hisatsugu 1651–1653 Emperor Go-Kōmyō
Nijō Mitsuhira 1653–1663 Emperor Go-Kōmyō, Emperor Go-Sai
Nijō Mitsuhira 1663–1664 Emperor Reigen
Takatsukasa Fusasuke 1664–1668 Emperor Reigen
Takatsukasa Fusasuke 1668–1682 Emperor Reigen
Ichijō Kaneteru 1682–1687 Emperor Reigen
Ichijō Kaneteru 1687–1689 Emperor Higashiyama
Ichijō Kaneteru 1689–1690 Emperor Higashiyama
Konoe Motohiro 1690–1703 Emperor Higashiyama
Takatsukasa Kanehiro 1703–1707 Emperor Higashiyama
Konoe Iehiro 1707–1709 Emperor Higashiyama
Konoe Iehiro 1709–1712 Emperor Nakamikado
Kujō Sukezane 1712–1716 Emperor Nakamikado
Kujō Sukezane 1716–1722 Emperor Nakamikado
Nijō Tsunahira 1722–1726 Emperor Nakamikado
Konoe Iehisa 1726–1736 Emperor Nakamikado, Emperor Sakuramachi
Nijō Yoshitada 1736–1737 Emperor Sakuramachi
Ichijō Kaneka 1737–1746 Emperor Sakuramachi
Ichijō Michika 1746–1747 Emperor Sakuramachi
Ichijō Michika 1747–1755 Emperor Momozono
Ichijō Michika 1755–1757 Emperor Momozono
Konoe Uchisaki 1757–1762 Emperor Momozono
Konoe Uchisaki 1762–1772 Empress Go-Sakuramachi, Emperor Go-Momozono
Konoe Uchisaki 1772–1778 Emperor Go-Momozono
Kujō Naozane 1778–1779 Emperor Go-Momozono
Kujō Naozane 1779–1785 Emperor Kōkaku
Kujō Naozane 1785–1787 Emperor Kōkaku
Takatsukasa Sukehira 1787–1791 Emperor Kōkaku
Ichijō Teruyoshi 1791–1795 Emperor Kōkaku
Takatsukasa Masahiro 1795–1814 Emperor Kōkaku
Ichijō Tadayoshi 1814–1823 Emperor Kōkaku, Emperor Ninkō
Takatsukasa Masamichi 1823–1856 Emperor Ninkō, Emperor Kōmei
Kujō Hisatada 1856–1862 Emperor Kōmei
Konoe Tadahiro 1862–1863 Emperor Kōmei
Takatsukasa Sukehiro 1863 Emperor Kōmei
Nijō Nariyuki 1863–1866 Emperor Kōmei
Nijō Nariyuki 1867 Emperor Meiji
Crown Prince Hirohito 1921–1926 Emperor Taishō

See also


  1. ^ ネケト. 摂政・関白 (in Japanese). JP. Archived from the original on 2004-08-27. Retrieved 2007-09-20.
  2. ^ Brown & Ishida 1979, p. 286.
  3. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 132.
  4. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 142.
  5. ^ Titsingh 1384, p. 145.
  6. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 160.
  7. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 229.
  8. ^ Titsingh 1834, pp. 229–36.
  9. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 236.
  10. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 238.
  11. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 239.
  12. ^ Titsingh 1834, p. 297.


Fujiwara clan

Fujiwara clan (藤原氏, Fujiwara-uji or Fujiwara-shi), descending from the Nakatomi clan and through them Ame-no-Koyane-no-Mikoto, was a powerful family of regents in Japan.The clan originated when the founder, Nakatomi no Kamatari (614–669) of the Nakatomi clan, was rewarded by Emperor Tenji with the honorific "Fujiwara", which evolved as a surname for Kamatari and his descendants. In time, Fujiwara became known as a clan name.The Fujiwara dominated the Japanese politics of Heian period (794–1185) through the monopoly of regent positions, sesshō and kampaku. The family's primary strategy for central influence was through the marrying of Fujiwara daughters to emperors. Through this, the Fujiwara would gain influence over the next emperor who would, according to family tradition of that time, be raised in the household of his mother's side and owe loyalty to his grandfather.

As abdicated emperors took over power by exercising insei (院政, cloistered rule) at the end of the 11th century, then followed by the rise of warrior class, the Fujiwara gradually lost its control over mainstream politics.

Beyond the 12th century, they continued to monopolize the titles of sesshō and kampaku for much of the time until the system was abolished in the Meiji era. Though their influence declined, the clan remained close advisors to the succeeding Emperors.

Fujiwara family tree

This is a genealogical tree of the leaders of the Fujiwara clan from 669 to 1871, who were otherwise known as the Tōshi no Chōja (藤氏長者).The title, Tōshi no Chōja, was abolished with Sesshō and Kampaku during the Meiji Restoration; the family leaders from five main branches of the clan, known as the Five regent houses, were then respectively granted with hereditary peerage titles (the kazoku) until the abolition of the nobility titles under the new constitution in 1946.

Fujiwara no Michinaga

Fujiwara no Michinaga (藤原 道長, 966 – January 3, 1028) was a Japanese statesman. The Fujiwara clan's control over Japan and its politics reached its zenith under his leadership.

Fujiwara no Morozane

Fujiwara no Morozane (Japanese language: 藤原 師実 ふじわらの もろざね) (1042 – March 14, 1101) was a regent of Japan and a chief of the Fujiwara clan during the late Heian period. He was known as Kyōgoku dono (Lord Kyōgoku) or Go-Uji dono (the Later Lord Uji, 後宇治殿). He held the positions of sessho or kanpaku for a twenty-year period, sessho from 1075 to 1086 during the reign of Emperor Shirakawa and from 1094 to 1099 during the reign of Emperor Horikawa, and kampaku from 1086 to 1094 during the reign of Emperor Horikawa.

He was the son of Fujiwara no Yorimichi and Fujiwara no Gishi (藤原 祇子, her real name is unknown today), a daughter of Fujiwara no Tanenari (藤原 種成), hence the grandson of Fujiwara no Michinaga. A contemporary document suggested he was the third born son, but this is uncertain. He was appointed to the positions of sadaijin, sessho and kampaku. He made his adopted daughter Kenshi (賢子) a consort of Emperor Shirakawa. Kenshi died when she was very young, but she left a son who would later ascend to the throne as Emperor Horikawa.

Emperor Shirakawa seized political power and Morozane was unable to enjoy the monopolic power that his father and grandfather had enjoyed. Even after Emperor Horikawa reached adulthood, the cloistered Emperor Shirakawa seized power.

Morozane married Fujiwara no Reishi, who was a daughter of Minamoto no Morofusa, a grandson of Emperor Murakami, and later adopted by Fujiwara no Nobuie. Morozane had many sons and daughters, including Fujiwara no Moromichi and Fujiwara no Ietada. From Morozane, two kuge families derive, the Kazanin family and the Oimikado (Oinomikado) family.

Morozane is also known the author of the waka collection Kyōgoku Kanpakushū (Anthology of Kyōgoku Kanpaku) and the diary Kyōgoku Kanpaku-ki (Diary of Kyōgoku Kanpaku).

Fujiwara no Mototsune

Fujiwara no Mototsune (藤原 基経, 836 – February 25, 891), also known as Horikawa Daijin (堀川大臣), was a Japanese statesman, courtier and politician of the early Heian period.He was born the third son of Fujiwara no Nagara, but was adopted by his powerful uncle Fujiwara no Yoshifusa, who had no sons. Mototsune followed in Yoshifusa's footsteps, holding power in the court in the position of regent for four successive emperors.

Mototsune invented the position of kampaku regent for himself in order to remain in power even after an emperor reached maturity. This innovation allowed the Fujiwara clan to tighten its grip on power right throughout an emperor's reign.

Mototsune is referred to as Shōsen Kō (昭宣公) (posthumous name as Daijō Daijin).

Fujiwara no Tadamichi

Fujiwara no Tadamichi (藤原 忠通, March 15, 1097 – March 13, 1164) was the eldest son of the Japanese regent (Kampaku) Fujiwara no Tadazane and a member of the politically powerful Fujiwara clan. He was the father of Fujiwara no Kanefusa and Jien.

In the Hōgen Rebellion of 1156, Tadamichi sided with the Emperor Go-Shirakawa, while his brother Fujiwara no Yorinaga sided with Emperor Sutoku.

Fujiwara no Tadazane

Fujiwara no Tadazane (藤原 忠実, 1078 – July 31, 1162) was a Japanese noble, the son of Fujiwara no Moromichi and the grandson of Fujiwara no Morozane. He built a villa, Fukedono, north of the Byōdō-in Temple in 1114. He was the father of Fujiwara no Tadamichi.

Fujiwara no Yorimichi

Fujiwara no Yorimichi (藤原 頼通) (992–1071), son of Michinaga, was a Japanese Court noble. He succeeded his father to the position of Sesshō in 1017, and then went on to become Kampaku from 1020 until 1068. In both these positions, he acted as Regent to the Emperor, as many of his ancestors and descendants did; the Fujiwara clan had nearly exclusive control over the regency positions for over 200 years.

Prior to succeeding to the position of Regent, Yorimichi had held the title of Nidaijin, the lowest level of state ministers. By edict, he was raised above his colleagues, to the title of Ichi no Hito, or First Subject. In addition to the reason of direct succession from his father, this edict was presumably necessary to allow Yorimichi to become Sesshō.

He is also known as the founder of Byodoin phoenix hall, located in Uji.

Fujiwara no Yoshifusa

Fujiwara no Yoshifusa (藤原 良房, 804 – October 7, 872), also known as Somedono no Daijin or Shirakawa-dono, was a Japanese statesman, courtier and politician during the Heian period.When Yoshifusa's grandson was enthroned as Emperor Seiwa, Yoshifusa assumed the role of regent (sesshō) for the young monarch. He was the first sesshō in Japanese history who was not himself of imperial rank; and he was the first of a series of regents from the Fujiwara clan.

Matsudono Motofusa

Fujiwara no Motofusa (藤原 基房, 1144 – February 1, 1230) was an imperial regent in the late 12th century, serving both Emperor Rokujō and Emperor Takakura. He was also called Matsudono Motofusa (松殿 基房), as he came from the village of Matsudono, near Kyoto. Fujiwara no Tadataka and Matsudono Moroie were his first and third sons, respectively.

Though wielding great power as sesshō and kampaku, Motofusa was prevented from becoming the head of the Fujiwara family by the political maneuvers of Taira no Kiyomori. An incident in 1170, while Motofusa was on his way to the Hōjuji Palace, further cemented his rivalry with the Taira clan. The Regent, along with a large retinue, was making his way to the palace for a ceremony which the cloistered Emperor Go-Shirakawa was supposed to attend, when a young boy, Taira no Sukemori refused to make way for him and his retinue. As a result, the Regent's men smashed Koremori's carriage and humiliated him. Koremori was a grandson of Kiyomori and so, after a few failed attempts at reprisal, followers of Taira no Shigemori (Sukemori's father) attacked the Regent's men on their way to a solemn ceremony, dragging them from their horses and humiliating them. These events, while seemingly minor on the surface, led to a rift between Emperor Go-Shirakawa and the Taira, and therefore to closer relations between Go-Shirakawa and the Minamoto, enemies of the Taira.

He is the maternal grandfather of the founder of Sōtō Zen Buddhism in Japan, Eihei Dōgen.

Michitsuna no Haha

Michitsuna no Haha (c. 935–995) was a Heian period writer in Japan. Her true name is unknown to history. The term Michitsuna no Haha literally translates to Michitsuna's mother. She is a member of the Thirty-six Medieval Poetry Immortals (中古三十六歌仙, chūko sanjurokkasen).

She wrote the Kagerō Nikki, a classic of Japanese literature, about her troubled marriage to Fujiwara no Kaneie who served as Sesshō and Kampaku.

Minister of the Left

The Minister of the Left (左大臣, Sadaijin) was a government position in Japan in the late Nara and Heian periods. The position was consolidated in the Taihō Code of 702.

The Asuka Kiyomihara Code of 689 marks the initial appearance of the sadaijin in the context of a central administrative body called the Daijō-kan (Council of State). This early Daijō-kan was composed of the three ministers—the daijō-daijin (Chancellor), the sadaijin and the udaijin (Minister of the Right).The sadaijin was the Senior Minister of State, overseeing all functions of government with the udaijin as his deputy.Within the Daijō-kan, the sadaijin was second only to the daijō-daijin (the Great Minister, or Chancellor of the Realm) in power and influence. Frequently, a member of the Fujiwara family would take the position in order to help justify and exercise the power and influence the family held.

The post of sadaijin, along with the rest of the Daijō-kan structure, gradually lost power over the 10th and 11th centuries, as the Fujiwara came to dominate politics more and more. The system was essentially powerless by the end of the 12th century, when the Minamoto, a warrior clan, seized control of the country from the court aristocracy (kuge). However, it is not entirely clear when the Daijō-kan system was formally dismantled prior to the Meiji era.



Sesshō and Kampaku

List of Daijō-daijin



Imperial Household Agency

Nijō family

Nijō family (二条家, Nijō-ke) was a Japanese aristocratic kin group. The Nijō was a branch of the Fujiwara clan.

Prince Shōtoku

Prince Shōtoku (聖徳太子, Shōtoku Taishi, February 7, 574 – April 8, 622), also known as Prince Umayado (厩戸皇子, Umayado no ōjî) or Prince Kamitsumiya (上宮皇子, Kamitsumiya no ōji), was a semi-legendary regent and a politician of the Asuka period in Japan who served under Empress Suiko. He was the son of Emperor Yōmei and his consort, Princess Anahobe no Hashihito, who was also Yōmei's younger half-sister and his much older sister. His parents were relatives of the ruling Soga clan and also he was involved in the defeat of the rival Mononobe clan. The primary source of the life and accomplishments of Prince Shōtoku comes from the Nihon Shoki.

Over successive generations, a devotional cult arose around the figure of Prince Shōtoku for the protection of Japan, the Imperial Family, and for Buddhism. Key religious figures such as Saichō, Shinran and others claimed inspiration or visions attributed to Prince Shōtoku.

Taiko (disambiguation)

Taiko may refer to:

Taiko (太鼓) The Japanese word for drum often used to refer to any Japanese drum or drumming music

Taikō (太閤) a title given to a retired Kampaku regent in Japan—see Sesshō and Kampaku. Commonly refers to Toyotomi Hideyoshi

Chatham Island taiko or Magenta petrel (Pterodroma magentae) bird

Taiko Studios, an independent animation studio founded by Shaofu Zhang

Taiko (ship) a Norwegian roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) freighter

Taiko no Tatsujin, a series of rhythm video games

Taikonaut, a term used in news media for Chinese astronauts

Taikō Yoshio, Japanese sumo wrestler

The novel Taiko: An Epic Novel of War and Glory in Feudal Japan, by Eiji Yoshikawa, translated by William Scott Wilson

Taiko (album), by Danger

Takatsukasa Fusahiro

Takatsukasa Fusahiro (鷹司 房熙, September 6, 1710 – June 9, 1730), son of Konoe Iehiro and adopted son of Takatsukasa Kanehiro, was a kugyō or Japanese court noble of the Edo period (1603–1868). He did not hold regent positions sesshō and kampaku. He and his wife did not have a son, and they adopted one Hisasuke.


Tokusō (Japanese: 得宗) was the title (post) held by the head of the mainline Hōjō clan, who also monopolized the position of shikken (regents to the shogunate) of the Kamakura shogunate in Japan during the period of Regent Rule (1199–1333). Its important to not confuse a regent to the shogunate with a regent to the Emperor (the latter are called Sesshō and Kampaku). Shikkens were the first regents to the shogunate.

The tokusō from 1256 to 1333 was the military dictator of Japan as de facto head of the bakufu (shogunate); despite the actual shōgun being merely a puppet. This implies that all other positions in Japan—the Emperor, the Imperial Court, Sesshō and Kampaku, and the shikken (regent of the shōgun)—had also been reduced to figureheads.

Toyotomi Hidetsugu

Toyotomi Hidetsugu (豊臣 秀次, 1568 – July 15, 1595) was a daimyō during the Sengoku period of Japan. He was the nephew and retainer of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, the unifier and ruler of Japan from 1590 to 1598. Despite being Hideyoshi's closest adult, male relative, Hidetsugu was accused of atrocities and attempting to stage a coup after the birth of Hideyoshi's son, and he was ordered to commit suicide. Hidetsugu's entire family, including children, were also executed on Hideyoshi's orders. His death and that of his family contributed to the quick dissolution of Toyotomi authority after Hideyoshi's death three years later.

Toyotomi Hideyoshi

Toyotomi Hideyoshi (豊臣 秀吉, March 17, 1537 – September 18, 1598) was a preeminent daimyō, warrior, general, samurai, and politician of the Sengoku period who is regarded as Japan's second "great unifier". He succeeded his former liege lord, Oda Nobunaga, and brought an end to the Sengoku period. The period of his rule is often called the Momoyama period, named after Hideyoshi's castle. After his death, his young son Hideyori was displaced by Tokugawa Ieyasu.

Hideyoshi is noted for a number of cultural legacies, including the restriction that only members of the samurai class could bear arms. He financed the construction, restoration and rebuilding of many temples standing today in Kyoto.

He is also known for ordering the Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–1598).


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