Emperor Ichijō (一条天皇, Ichijō-tennō, July 15, 980 – July
25, 1011) was the 66th emperor of Japan, according to the
traditional order of succession.
Ichijō's reign spanned the years from 986 to 1011.
1 Traditional narrative
2 Events of Ichijō's life
3 Eras of Ichijō's reign
4 Consorts and children
7 See also
Before he ascended to the
Chrysanthemum Throne, his personal name
(imina) was Kanehito-shinnō. Kanehito-shinnō was the first son of
Emperor En'yū and Fujiwara no Senshi, a daughter of Fujiwara no
Kaneie. Since there are no documented siblings, it is supposed that he
was an only child.
Ichijō had five Empresses or Imperial consorts and five Imperial sons
Events of Ichijō's life
His reign coincided with the culmination of
Heian period culture and
the apex of the power of the Fujiwara clan.
In 984, he was appointed as crown prince under
Emperor Kazan. It was
rumored contemporarily that his maternal grandfather Kaneie plotted to
have Kazan retire from the throne.
Ichijō ascended the throne at the age of six.
July 31, 986 (Kanna 2, 22nd day of the 6th month): In the 2nd year of
Emperor Kazan's reign (花山天皇二年), he abdicated; and the
succession (senso) was received by a cousin, the son of his father's
August 1, 986 (Kanna 2, 23rd day of the 6th month):
Emperor Ichijō is
said to have acceded to the throne (sokui).
A son of
Emperor Reizei, who was older than Ichijō, was appointed
crown prince. Kaneie became the regent (Sesshō) and effectively ruled
the state. After Kaneie died in 990, his first son and Ichijō's uncle
Fujiwara no Michitaka was appointed regent.
March 1, 991 (
Shōryaku 2, 12th day of the 2nd month): The
Emperor En'yū died at the age of 33.
Kankō 5, 8th day of the 2nd month): Kazan died at the age of
July 16, 1011 (
Kankō 8, 13th day of the 6th month): In the 25th year
Emperor Ichijō's reign (一条天皇二十五年), the emperor
abdicated; and the succession (senso) was received by his cousin.
Emperor Sanjō is said to have acceded to the
July 25, 1011 (
Kankō 8, 22nd day of the 6th month):
Ichijō had two empress consorts. First was Teishi (or Fujiwara no
Sadako), a daughter of Fujiwara no Michitaka, second was Shōshi (or
Akiko), a daughter of Fujiwara no Michinaga, a younger brother of
Michitaka. Most people thought it impossible to have two empress
consorts, but Michinaga claimed that the empress held two separate
titles, Chūgū and Kōgō, which were different in principle and
could therefore given to two different women.
The courts of both empresses were known as centers of culture. Sei
Shōnagon, author of The Pillow Book, was a lady in waiting to Teishi.
Murasaki Shikibu was a lady in waiting to Shoshi. There were other
famous poets in the courts of the empresses.
Ichijō loved literature and music. For this reason, high ranked
courtiers felt the necessity for their daughter to hold cultural
salons with many skillful lady poets. Particularly he was fond of the
flute. Ichijō was known for his temperate character and was beloved
by his subjects.
During Ichijō's reign, Imperial visits were first made to the
following four shrines: Kasuga, Ōharano, Matsunoo, and Kitano; and in
the years which followed, Emperors traditionally made yearly Imperial
visits to these shrines and to three others: Kamo, Iwashimizu and
Decorative emblems (kiri) of the Hosokawa clan are found at Ryoan-ji.
Ichijō is entombed near what had been the residence of Hosokawa
Katsumoto before the Ōnin War.
The actual site of Ichijō's grave is known. This emperor is
traditionally venerated at a memorial
Shinto shrine (misasagi) at
Imperial Household Agency
Imperial Household Agency designates this location as Ichijō's
mausoleum. It is formally named En'yū-ji no kita no misasagi.
Ichijō is buried amongst the "Seven Imperial Tombs" at Ryoan-ji
Temple in Kyoto. The mound which commemorates the
is today named Kinugasa-yama. The emperor's burial place would have
been quite humble in the period after Ichijo died.
These tombs reached their present state as a result of the 19th
century restoration of imperial sepulchers (misasagi) which were
Kugyō (公卿) is a collective term for the very few most powerful
men attached to the court of the
Emperor of Japan
Emperor of Japan in pre-Meiji eras.
In general, this elite group included only three to four men at a
time. These were hereditary courtiers whose experience and background
have brought them to the pinnacle of a life's career.
During Kazan's reign, this apex of the
Fujiwara no Kaneie
Fujiwara no Kaneie (藤原兼家), 929–990.
Fujiwara no Michitaka (藤原道隆), 953–995.
Kampaku, Fujiwara no Kaneie.
Kampaku, Fujiwara no Michikane, 961–995.
Daijō-daijin, Fujiwara no Kaneie.
Daijō-daijin, Fujiwara no Yoritada (藤原頼忠), 924–989.
Daijō-daijin, Fujiwara no Tametisu (藤原為光), 942–992.
Fujiwara no Michinaga
Fujiwara no Michinaga (藤原道長), 966–1027.
Fujiwara no Michikane (藤原道兼).
Naidaijin, Fujiwara no Michitaka.
Naidaijin, Fujiwara no Korechika (藤原伊周), 973–1010.
Naidaijin, Kan'in Kinsue (藤原公季), 956–1029.
Eras of Ichijō's reign
The years of Ichijō's reign are more specifically identified by more
than one era name or nengō.
Consorts and children
Empress (Kōgō): Fujiwara no Teishi/Sadako (藤原定子)
(977–1001), 1st daughter of
Fujiwara no Michitaka (藤原道隆)
Imperial Princess Shushi (脩子内親王) (997–1049)
Imperial Prince Atsuyasu (敦康親王) (999–1019)
Imperial Princess Bishi (1001–1008)
Empress (Chūgū): Fujiwara no Shōshi/Akiko (藤原彰子)
(988–1074), daughter of
Fujiwara no Michinaga
Fujiwara no Michinaga (藤原道長); later
Nyoin (女院) 'Jōtō-mon In' (上東門院)
Imperial Prince Atsuhira (敦成親王) (1008–1036) (Emperor
Imperial Prince Atsunaga (敦良親王) (1009–1045) (Emperor
Nyōgo: Fujiwara no Gishi (藤原義子) (974–1053), daughter of
Fujiwara no Kinsue (藤原公季)
Nyōgo: Fujiwara no Genshi (藤原元子) (?–?), daughter of
Fujiwara no Akimitsu (藤原顕光); later, married to Minamoto no
Nyōgo: Fujiwara no Sonshi (藤原尊子) (984–1022), daughter of
Fujiwara no Michikane (藤原道兼); later, married to Fujiwara no
Michitō (藤原通任) in 1015
Court lady (Mikushige-dono-no-Bettō): 4th daughter of Fujiwara no
Michitaka (藤原道隆の娘) (?–1002)
Japanese Imperial kamon — a stylized chrysanthemum blossom
^ a b
Imperial Household Agency
Imperial Household Agency (Kunaichō): 一条天皇 (66)
^ Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial House of Japan, pp.
^ Brown, Delmer et al. (1979). Gukanshō, pp. 302–307; Varley,
Jinnō Shōtōki, p. 73; Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des
empereurs du japon, pp. 150–154., p. 150, at Google Books
^ Varley, p. 192; Brown, p. 264; prior to
Emperor Jomei, to the
personal names of the emperors were very long and people did not
generally use them. The number of characters in each name diminished
after Jomei's reign.
^ Brown, p. 307.
^ Titsingh, p. 149; Varley, p. 44; a distinct act of senso is
unrecognized prior to
Emperor Tenji; and all sovereigns except Jitō,
Yōzei, Go-Toba, and Fushimi have senso and sokui in the same year
until the reign of
^ Brown, p. 302; Varley, p. 44.
^ a b Brown, p. 305.
^ a b Brown, p. 306.
^ Titsingh, p. 154; Brown, p. 307; Varley, p. 44.
^ Brown, p. 307 n22.
^ Ponsonby-Fane, p. 421.
^ The "Seven Imperial Tombs" at
Ryoan-ji are the burial places of Uda,
Kazan, Ichijō, Go-Suzaku, Go-Reizei, Go-Sanjō, and Horikawa.
^ Moscher, Gouverneur. (1978). Kyoto: A Contemplative Guide, pp.
^ a b c d Brown, p. 302-303.
^ a b c Brown, p. 303.
^ a b c d Brown, p. 304.
^ Titsingh, p. 150.
Brown, Delmer M. and Ichirō Ishida, eds. (1979). Gukanshō: The
Future and the Past. Berkeley: University of California Press.
ISBN 978-0-520-03460-0; OCLC 251325323
Moscher, Gouverneur. (1978). Kyoto: A Contemplative Guide.
ISBN 9780804812948; OCLC 4589403
Ponsonby-Fane, Richard Arthur Brabazon. (1959). The Imperial House of
Japan. Kyoto: Ponsonby
Memorial Society. OCLC 194887
Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Nihon Odai Ichiran; ou, Annales des empereurs
du Japon. Paris: Royal Asiatic Society, Oriental Translation Fund of
Great Britain and Ireland. OCLC 5850691
Varley, H. Paul. (1980). Jinnō Shōtōki: A Chronicle of Gods and
Sovereigns. New York: Columbia University Press.
ISBN 978-0-231-04940-5; OCLC 59145842
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