Friday, February 28, 2014

Anegawa KIA

During my last trip back to Japan last fall, I finally received the Battle of Anegawa 1570 KIA list from the Kajino family.  It is a gold mine of beautiful information.  Kuwata Tadachika and Yamaoka Sohachi's Okehazama*Anegawa no Eki published in 1965 has the list who was killed on the Azai/Asakura side.  (Kuwata/Yamaoka, pp. 315-316)


Imamura Kanmon no Suke
Hayasaki Kichibyoe
Horie Sama no Suke
Tomita Saipachi
Kosaka Gosuke
Kosaka Tataro
Kosaka Jizaemon
Kano Jirozaemon
Kano Jirobyoe
Kawage Sanzaemon
Nakatsumachi Kanhachiro
Azai Uta no Suke
Azai Itsuki
Anyoji Kanhachiro
Anyoji Hikorokuro
Yuge Rokurozaemon
Endo Kiemon Naotsune
Mitamura Shozaemon


Uozumi Bingo no Kami
Kurozaka Bichu no kami
Maeba Shinhachiro
Maeba Shintaro
Magara Jurozaemon Naotaka
Magara Juro Naomoto
Kobayashi Hashuken

The Battle of Anegawa has two other different names due to the location where the armies fought.  The Tokugawa/Asakura was known as Mitamura Kassen.  As for the Oda/Azai, it was known as Nomura Kassen.  Also here is a link in Japanese on the Battle of Anegawa:

Side note:  A very young Todo Takatora made his first baptism of fire for the Azai at the Battle of Anegawa.

Nobunaga no tame!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Okehazama tactics

I found the perfect quote to sum up the Battle of Okehazama 1560 by the USMC in Warfighting 1989.

"Surprise is paralysis, if only partial and temporary, of the enemy's ability to resist.  The advantage gained by the surprise depends on the degree of surprise and the enemy's ability to adjust and recover."

Nobunaga's surprise attack was executed so well that Yoshimoto's army never had the ability nor the time to adjust and recover.  For more information on warfare in general, please visit this link:

Tenka no tame!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Kenichi Yamamoto

Novelist Kenichi Yamamoto unexpectedly passed away earlier this month at the age of 57.

He wrote Sengoku novels such as Katen no Shiro, Rikyu ni Tazureyo, and Raijin no Tsutsu.  Katen no Shiro and the Rikyu novels later became motion pictures.  I have Katen no Shiro and Raijin no Tsutsu since they deal with Nobunaga.  Katen no Shiro deals with the construction of Azuchi Castle, while Raijin no Tsutsu deals with Nobunaga's gun instructor Hashimoto Ippa.

The news is truly heartbreaking since Mr. Yamamoto was on his game of late.  His books made Nobunaga/Sengoku history more interesting and lively.  His work will be missed.

Nobunaga no tame!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Yamamoto Kanzo

Today I found something that caught my attention.  It appears that Yamamoto Kansuke, Takeda Shingen's tactician had a son by the name of Yamamoto Kanzo Nobutomo.  Yamamoto Kanzo was born in 1556 at Takane in Yamanishi Prefecture.  He was killed in action at age of around twenty at the Battle of Nagashino 1575.  He fought Watanabe Moritsuna, a retainer of Tokugawa Ieyasu, and lost his life.

I had the chance to visit the Nagashino battlefield last year, but time was not on my side.  I was able to visit the main battlefield and the museum which I highly recommend.  I would love to spend more time roaming around the battlefield since you can get a taste of what Nobunaga and his gunners did on that historic day.

Tenka no tame!

Saturday, February 15, 2014


While reading Kicho&Nobunaga by Rumi Komonz, something caught my attention that needs to be discussed.  Believe or not, there is a very high possibility that Nohime lodged together with Nobunaga at Joubodaiin Temple in 1568.  Why is this important?  Ota Gyuichi's Shincho-Ko-ki has nothing on Nohime rooming with Nobunaga on October 27th, 1568.  It just states that Nobunaga spent the night at Joubodaiin.  However, according to the Akechi Chronicle, Nohime was with Nobunaga on October 27th.  Did Gyuichi purposely omit Nohime because she was a woman or did not think it was important to him?  She was with Nobunaga at Jobodaiin in my opinion and it needs more explanation from historians and scholars alike.

Kicho&Nobunaga (Komonz p. 86)

"Only six days after the re-establishment of the Ashikaga Shogunate, Kicho and Nobunaga left Kyoto to return to Gifu.  On October 27th, they lodged Joubodaiin Temple together.
They were served vegetarian meals at the Buddhist temple.  They had ripened persimmons for supper.  It was Kicho's favorite."

One has to remember that Nobunaga loved persimmons as well.

Nobunaga no tame!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Nobunaga Podcast I

The Samurai Archives has another brilliant podcast on Nobunaga.  This time, the podcast explains Nobunaga's retainers and how unorthodox it was during his reign.

There were several key points why Nobunaga was successful

  • He had few or none clan elders which freed him up.
  • Old families such as the Takeda and the Uesugi were more traditional and restrained freedom.
  • Nobunaga was able to delegate authority to his captains.  Which made waging war on a national scale much easier.  If Nobunaga led the front on every campaign, he would have never had the chance to unify the country.  However, when he did lead the front, it was brutal, bloody, and nasty.
For more on Nobunaga and his army fighting on several fronts, here is a old post I wrote awhile ago.

Tenka no tame!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Nobunaga and Yoshitsune

After reading Okehazama Kassen Kishu no Shinjutsu by Ota Teruo, Oda Nobunaga and Minamoto Yoshitsune has a lot in common when it comes to surprise attacks.  The Battle of Okehazama 1560 and the Battle of Ichi-no-tani 1184 are some similar.  Nobunaga was a Genpei War freak and either Hirate Masahide or Hirata Sanmi (military instructor) taught him the old war tales and tactics.  Nobunaga was no fool and used the Genpei Wars to the fullest extent. For Nobunaga, Okehazama was his Ichi-no-tani.  Here are two videos of the battles and see for yourself.

  • Both were surprise attacks and both Nobunaga and Yoshitsune won their battles.
  • Both charged down a hill.  That being said, Yoshitsune's charged is supposed to much longer and steeper.
  • Nobunaga had the weather in his favor.  The rain covered his troops from the Imagawa.
  • Nobunaga sings and dances to Atsumori on the eve of the battle.  Taira Atsumori was killed at Ichi-no-tani.
  • Okehazama was decisive battle (Imagawa Yoshimoto was killed), while Ichi-no-tani was not.
  • Nobunaga's crossing of the sea at the Battle of Muraki in 1554.  Winds and the sea was strong in one of Yoshitsune's previous battles.
  • In 1568 in Kyoto, someone presented Nobunaga armor that Yoshitsune wore at the Battle of Ichi-no-tani.
  • Nobunaga was a tall and handsome man, while Yoshitsune was short with buck teeth.
These are just a few examples and there are probably many more.  See Okehazama Kassen Kishu no Shinjutsu (pp. 278-280).  This is an interesting subject in my opinion and would like to continue to do more research on the relationship.  If possible, I would love to write a column on Okehazama and Ichi-no-tani for the Battle of Okehazama Preservation Society.

Nobunaga no tame!