The BATTLE OF SEKIGAHARA (
Tokugawa Ieyasu took three more years to consolidate his position of
power over the
* 1 Background * 2 Prelude * 3 Troop deployment
* 4 Battle
* 4.1 Fall of the Western Army * 4.2 Late arrivals
* 5 Aftermath
* 5.1 Rise of the Tokugawa Shogunate * 5.2 Seeds of dissent from Sekigahara
* 6 _Kokudaka_ of _daimyōs_ * 7 Miyamoto Musashi * 8 In popular culture * 9 References * 10 Bibliography * 11 Further reading * 12 External links
Oda Nobunaga had slowly consolidated control over much of
Toyotomi Hideyoshi unified
Katō Kiyomasa and
Fukushima Masanori were publicly
critical of the bureaucrats, especially
Tokugawa Ieyasu was unrivaled in terms of seniority, rank, reputation
and overall influence within the Regency of the
Later, a supposed conspiracy to assassinate Ieyasu surfaced, and many
Toyotomi loyalists, including Toshiie's son, Toshinaga , were accused
of taking part and forced to submit to Ieyasu's authority. However,
Uesugi Kagekatsu , one of Hideyoshi's appointed regents , defied
Ieyasu by building up his military. When Ieyasu officially condemned
him and demanded that he come to
Afterwards, Ieyasu summoned the help of various supporters and led
them northward to attack the Uesugi clan. Many of them were at that
moment besieging Hasedō though.
Mitsunari, in his home
Sawayama Castle , met with
Ōtani Yoshitsugu ,
Mashita Nagamori , and
Ankokuji Ekei . Here, they forged the alliance,
and invited Mōri Terumoto, who actually did not take part in
Sekigahara, to be its head. Thus formed what came to be referred to as
the Western Army. Mori seized Osaka Castle for their base of
operations, since most of Tokugawa’s forces had vacated the area to
attack Uesugi. The battle Japanese arquebus of the
Ishida wanted to reinforce Mori at the impregnable Osaka Castle. This
would let Mitsunari control the traditional capital city of
Since Tokugawa and his army were departing from Edo, they could only
take two roads, both of which converged on Gifu Castle. Tokugawa
marched on Gifu while Ishida was delayed at
Fushimi Castle . This
fortress was a halfway point between Osaka and
Tired from a day's march and their gunpowder wet from the rain, Ishida and his forces stopped at Sekigahara. "Ishida deployed his troops in a strong defensive position, flanked by two streams with high ground on the opposite banks." His right flank was reinforced by _daimyō_ Kobayakawa Hideaki on Mount Matsuo .
On October 20, 1600, Tokugawa learned that Ishida had deployed his troops at Sekigahara in a defensive position. They had been following the Western Army, and benefited from considerably better weather. At dawn of the next day, Tokugawa's advanced guard stumbled into Ishida's army. Neither side saw each other due to the dense fog caused by the earlier rain. Both sides panicked and withdrew, but this resulted in both sides being aware of their adversary's presence.
Ishida held his current defensive position and Tokugawa deployed his own forces. He sent his allies' forces in a line to the front, and held his own troops in reserve. Around 8:00am, wind blew away the fog, and both sides noticed their respective adversary's positions. Last-minute orders were issued and the battle began.
Initially, Ieyasu's eastern army had 75,000 men, while Mitsunari's western army numbered 120,000. Tokugawa had also sneaked in a supply of arquebuses . Knowing that Ieyasu was heading toward Osaka, Mitsunari decided to abandon his positions and marched to Sekigahara. Even though the Western forces had tremendous tactical advantages, Ieyasu had already been in contact with many daimyō in the Western Army for months, promising them land and leniency after the battle should they switch sides.
Tokugawa's forces started the battle when Fukushima Masanori, the leader of the advanced guard, charged north from Tokugawa's left flank along the Fuji River against the Western Army's right center. The ground was still muddy from the previous day's rain, so the conflict there devolved into something more primal. Tokugawa then ordered attacks from his right and his center against the Western Army’s left in order to support Fukushima's attack.
This left the Western Army's center unscathed, so Ishida ordered this unit under the command of Shimazu Yoshihiro to reinforce his right flank. Shimazu refused as _daimyōs_ of the day only listened to respected commanders, which Ishida was not.
Recent scholarship by Professor Yoshiji Yamasaki of Toho University has indicated that the Mori faction had reached a secret agreement with the Tokugawa 2 weeks earlier, pledging neutrality at the decisive battle in exchange for a guarantee of territorial preservation, and was a strategic decision on Mori Terumoto's part that later backfired.
Fukushima's attack was slowly gaining ground, but this came at the cost of exposing their flank to attack from across the Fuji River by Ōtani Yoshitsugu , who took advantage of this opportunity. Just past Ōtani's forces were those of Kobayakawa Hideaki on Mount Matsuo.
Kobayakawa was one of the _daimyōs_ that had been courted by Tokugawa. Even though he had agreed to defect to Ieyasu's side, in the actual battle he was hesitant and remained neutral. As the battle grew more intense, Ieyasu finally ordered arquebuses to fire at Kobayakawa's position on Mount Matsuo to force Kobayakawa to make his choice. At that point Kobayakawa joined the battle as a member of the Eastern Army. His forces charged Ōtani's position, which did not end well for Kobayakawa. Ōtani's forces had dry gunpowder, so they opened fire on the turncoats, making the charge of 16,000 men mostly ineffective. However, he was already engaging forces under the command of Tōdō Takatora , Kyōgoku Takatsugu , and Oda Yūraku when Kobayakawa charged. At this point, the buffer Ōtani established was outnumbered. Seeing this, Western Army generals Wakisaka Yasuharu , Ogawa Suketada , Akaza Naoyasu , and Kutsuki Mototsuna switched sides, turning the tide of battle.
FALL OF THE WESTERN ARMY
Heavily outnumbered, Ōtani had no choice but to retreat. This left the Western Army's right flank wide open, so Fukushima and Kobayakawa began to roll it up. Thus Ishida's right flank was destroyed and his center was being pushed back, so he retreated.
Ishida’s only remaining forces were on Mount Nangu. However, these forces were there for a reason. Kikkawa Hiroie was one of the commanders on the mountain. Kikkawa's troops formed the front lines of the Mōri army, which was commanded by his cousin Mōri Hidemoto. Earlier, when Hidemoto decided to attack the Tokugawa forces, Hiroie refused to comply, stating he was busy eating and asked to be left alone. This in turn prevented the Chōsokabe army, which deployed behind the Mōri clan, from attacking. When Ishida arrived, Kikkawa betrayed him as well. He kept the Mōri army at bay, and since Ishida had no more support, he was defeated.
The Western Army disintegrated afterwards, and the commanders scattered and fled. Some, like Ukita Hideie managed to escape, at least initially. Many others did not. Shima Sakon was shot and fatally wounded by a round from an arquebus and Ōtani Yoshitsugu committed suicide. Mitsunari, Yukinaga and Ekei were some of those who were captured and a few, like Mōri Terumoto and Shimazu Yoshihiro were able to return to their home provinces. Mitsunari himself was later executed.
Both sides had forces that did not arrive at Sekigahara in time to participate due to other battles.
Ieyasu's son Hidetada led another group through Nakasendō . However, Hidetada's forces were bogged down as he attempted to besiege Sanada Masayuki 's Ueda Castle against his father's direct orders. Even though the Tokugawa forces numbered some 38,000, an overwhelming advantage over the Sanada's mere 2,000, they were still unable to capture the strategist's well-defended position.
At the same time, 15,000 Toyotomi troops were being held up by 500
Hosokawa Yūsai at Tanabe Castle in present-day Maizuru ,
RISE OF THE TOKUGAWA SHOGUNATE
Present day Sekigahara battlefield memorials
Tokugawa Ieyasu redistributed the lands and fiefs of the participants, generally rewarding those who assisted him and displacing, punishing, or exiling those who fought against him. In doing so, he gained control of many former Toyotomi territories. Tokugawa himself also became quite wealthy.
Following the public execution of
At the time, the battle was considered only an internal conflict
between Toyotomi vassals. However, after Ieyasu was named
SEEDS OF DISSENT FROM SEKIGAHARA
While most clans were content with their new status, there were many clans, especially those on the western side, who became bitter about their displacement or what they saw as a dishonorable defeat or punishment. Three clans in particular did not take the aftermath of Sekigahara lightly:
The descendants of these three clans would in two centuries collaborate to bring down the Tokugawa shogunate, leading to the Meiji Restoration .
_KOKUDAKA_ OF _DAIMYōS_
○ = Main _daimyōs_ who participated in
Battle of Sekigahara
● = _Daimyōs_ who defected
_DAIMYō_ _KOKUDAKA_ (TEN THOUSANDS)
_DAIMYō_ _KOKUDAKA_ (TEN THOUSANDS)
Wakisaka Yasuharu ● 3.3 Tanaka Yoshimasa ○ 10.0
Legend has it that the rōnin Miyamoto Musashi was present at the battle among Ukita Hideie's army and escaped the defeat of Hideie's forces unharmed. Musashi would have been around 16 years of age at the time. There is no hard evidence to prove if Musashi was present or not for the battle. According to one account, the _Musashi yuko gamei_, "Musashi's achievements stood out from the crowd, and were known by the soldiers in all camps." Musashi is reticent on the matter, writing only that he had "participated in over six battles since my youth".
IN POPULAR CULTURE
_ This section DOES NOT CITE ANY SOURCES . Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources . Unsourced material may be challenged and removed . (September 2016)_ _(Learn how and when to remove this template message )_
* The battle of Sekigahara is depicted at the beginning of the 1954
Samurai I , the first of
Hiroshi Inagaki 's
Samurai Trilogy .
* The related political intrigues leading up to the battle was the
historical foundation for
* ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ Davis 1999 , p. 204.
* ^ _A_ _B_ Bryant 1995 .
* ^ Yoshikawa, Eiji. _Taiko_. Kodansha International.
* ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _D_ _E_ _F_ Davis 1999 , p. 205.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , p. 8.
* ^ _A_ _B_ Bryant 1995 , p. 10.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , pp. 12, 89.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , pp. 12, 90.
* ^ Davis 1999 , pp. 205–206.
* ^ _A_ _B_ Bryant 1995 , pp. 89–90.
* ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _D_ _E_ _F_ _G_ Davis 1999 , p. 206.
* ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _D_ Davis 1999 , p. 207.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , p. 73.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , pp. 66, 68.
* ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _D_ Bryant 1995 , p. 80.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , p. 51.
* ^ _A_ _B_ Bryant 1995 , p. 79.
* ^ "Tanabe Castle Profile". _jcastle.info_.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , p. 91.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , p. 84.
* ^ Bryant 1995 , p. 82.
* ^ Davis 1999 , p. 208.
* ^ Hoffman, Michael. "A man in the soul of Japan", _
* Bryant, Anthony (1995). _Sekigahara 1600: The Final Struggle For Power_. Osprey Campaign Series. 40. Oxford: Osprey Publishing . ISBN 978-1-85532-395-7 . * Davis, Paul (1999). "Sekigahara, 21 October 1600". _100 Decisive Battles: From Ancient Times to the Present_. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-514366-9 . * Wilson, William Scott (2004). _The Lone Samurai: The Life of Miyamoto Musashi_. Tokyo: Kodansha International.
Paul Davis used the following sources to compile the chapter "Sekigahara, 21 October 1600" in _100 Decisive Battles: From Ancient Times to the Present_ "Sekigahara, 21 October 1600."
* Sadler, A.L. _The Maker of Modern Japan: The Life of Tokugawa Ieyasu_ London: George Allen ">Coordinates : 35°22′00″N 136°28′00″E / 35.3667°N 136.4667°E / 35.3667; 136.4667
* NDL : 00570565
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