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Old 07-09-2010, 09:54 PM
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Default The Daimyo

The Daimyo

The word Daimyo may be translated as "great names" and seems to have been derived from a combination of Dai (great) with myo or myoden (used to indentify a rice-producing fief). Notoriously belligerent and generally rapacious, the lords of such estates capable of sustaining themselves throughout the early and middle periods of Japan's feudal era. Only leaders such as Nobunaga, Hideupshi. and ultimately, Ieyasu had been able to coerce them into a sort of uneasy alliance wherein their individualistic and expansionistic tendencies were controlled by a severely repressive system of checks and balances. Ieyasu and his descendants were (and remained throught the succession of Tokugawa dynasties) aware that the downfall of the emperor and his court nobles had, to a large extent, been due to lack of controlover the provincial centers of military power, which, however necessary for peace keeping purposes throughout the realm.

Classification of the Daimyo Ranks


1st Grand Corridor (o-roka-zume) - Members of the three exalted families (sanke)

2nd Lounge (Tamarima-zume) - Members of the Matsudaira families (gokamon) and of the hereditary daimyo (fudai)

3rd Main Hall (O-hiroma-zume) - Members of the Matsudarira family (gokamon, of the hereditary daimyo (fudai), and of the "outside" daimyo (tozama) with over 100,000 koku in yearly income

4th Reception Hall (Teikannoma-zume) - Members of daimyo families of the third rank with less then 100,000 koku in yearly income

5th Willow Room (Yanaginoma-zume) - "Outside" daimyo (tozama) with less then 50,000 koku in yearly in yearly income

6th Wild Goose Room (Karinoma-zume) - Hereditary daimyo (fudai) with less then 50,000 koku yearly income

7th Chrysanthemum Room (Kikumoma-zume) - Daimyo without castle (mujo daimyo) with a yearly income between 10,000 and 20,000 koku

8th Other less-celebrated halls - Other Lords

When being invested with the title of daimyo, a subject of this the highest rank in the buke class under the shogun, had to submit written oaths and swear personal fealty to the shogun. This ritual, and the resistration of the oath in the records of the bakufu in Edo, was repeated by each daimyo everytime a new Taokugawa leader assumed title shogun. With this oath, the daimyo obligated himself to perform a series of duties. Primary among these were his oath, the daimyo obligated himself to perform a series of duties. Primary among these were his military obligations, such as maintaining his quota of warriors in active service and ready to move into battle at the shogun's command, whenever needed; he has also had to provide troops for guard duty at any station specified by Edo, such as the thirty-six gates of the shogun's castle.

(more to come)

Last edited by Uke; 07-10-2010 at 11:49 AM.
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