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Minamoto no Yoshikuni's two breaths

Speaking of the Genji indigenous to the Kanto region, Hitachi Genji (Satake, Takeda), descended from Hachiman Taro Yoshiie's younger brother Yoshimitsu, and his son Yoshikuni's sons (Yoshishige Nitta, Yoshiyasu Ashikaga) are famous. Yoshikuni's descendants descended from two shogun families, the Ashikaga and the Tokugawa (though of dubious origin, Nitta Genji clan), and continued to be at the center of Japan's political history in the Muromachi-Edo period. When we think of the Genji clan, we get the impression that there are many feuds between parents and children and brothers, and there are many bloody incidents, but the Yoshikuni lineage can be said to have excelled in he long-term struggle for clan survival. Both the Genji and Taira clans are descendants of the Emperor and received their surnames when they renounced their imperial status, and their authority comes from the trust of the Emperor and the Imperial Court. The Sekkan family, the Insei, the Taira family, and the Kamakura Hojo clan were asked how to connect with the power that was running Kyoto, and at times they were clearly asked for their banners, and the two clans were able to formulate a portfolio of survival strategies. In that sense, I believe that split inheritance at the time not only ensured a spare key for the survival of the family, but also served as an insurance policy when faced with a major choice.

When Yoritomo raised his flag, the Ashikaga clan was the one who actively worked with him and built a relationship with the Hojo clan, while the Ashikaga clan opportunistically distanced himself from Yoritomo and the Hojo clan. On the other hand, The Nitta clan was the family of the eldest son, but during the Kamakura period, they were treated as lower-ranked retainers for a long time, and the size of their territory shrank, leading to Yoshisada Nitta's raising an army in later years. Incidentally, in Japanese history, Kamakura and Muromachi are divided by period, but the Ashikaga family took five legal wives from the Hojo family from the 2nd generation Yoshikane to the 7th generation Takauji and continued to connect the head family. Takauji played a leading role in overthrowing the Kamakura government, but his mother was unusually from a family other than the Hojo family (Uesugi family). This is because his older brother Takayoshi, who was the son of the Hojo family's legal wife, died early, so he became the eldest son. His legal wife was Toko, the daughter of Hisatoki of Kanazawa (Hojo), and his two sons were born to Yoshiakira (the second shogun) and Motoji (the first Kamakura kubo), and the Hojo lineage continued to the Muromachi Shogun family.

Yoshisada Nitta and Takauji Ashikaga were divided into the Southern Court and the Northern Court, and fought alongside their clansmen, but at a time when Japan was divided into either of the two dynasties, it was designed to ensure that one of them would survive. Although the Nitta Soke perished, its tributaries (Yamana, Satomi, and Tokugawa) survived robustly throughout the Muromachi and Sengoku periods, leading to the restoration of the Nitta-Genji clan by Tokugawa Ieyasu. The Tokugawa family had some rather ambiguous arrivals, and they were generally tolerant of the fallen Genji lineage. There are many families who became feudal lords or hatamoto(Shogun's vassals) until the Meiji period. There are countless cases in which families are divided into allies and enemies in a bid to survive, but Sanada's ``Farewell of Inubushi'' is a famous scene. At Sekigahara, his father Masayuki and his younger brother Yukimura parted ways with the Mitsunari clan and his older brother Nobuyuki with the Tokugawa clan to try to survive the family, but on the other hand, the Yoshikuni school (Yoshishige and Yoshiyasu's descendants) fought for the survival and prosperity of their clan over hundreds of years, then finally achieved to rule Japan.

Nitta-sho (currently Ota City, Gunma Prefecture) and Ashikaga-sho (currently Ashikaga City, Tochigi Prefecture) are adjacent to each other, and their centers are only about 20 km apart at most. Ashikaga City is a sister city with Kamakura City, and Ota City apparently has no sister cities in Japan, but aside from Kamakura, the two cities can truly be said to be sister cities.



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