Monday, January 27, 2014

Takenaka Hanbei

Takenaka Hanbei (1544-1579) was of the more talented Sengoku Era tacticians.  In 1564 he plotted with his father-in-law Ando Morinari (one of the Mino Big Three) to take over Inabayama Castle (Gifu Castle) which was held by Saito Tatsuoki.  The two were able to overthrow Tatsuoki.  Nobunaga quickly heard the news and tried to negotiate with Hanbei to hand over the castle.  However, the negotiations broke off and eventually Tatsuoki returned to Inabayama.  After Nobunaga's conquest of Mino in 1567, Hanbei served Nobunaga and Hideyoshi.

Tenka no tame!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Tsushima Festival

It was well know that Nobunaga liked festivals.  He was even at the Kyoto Gion Matsuri in the late 1570s.  In 1556, he was at the Tsushima Tenno Matsuri with his wife Nohime.  It was a summer love at its best.  Kicho&Nobunaga has a great passage on the two at the festival.

Kicho&Nobunaga (Rumi Komonz, p. 41)

"Leaving Hotta's residence together, Kicho and Nobunaga went to the Tsushima Shrine annual festival.  Having only a few bodyguards, twenty-two year old Kicho and her twenty-three year old husband were dressed simply as villagers of Owari.  After a hot and humid day, Kicho relished the fresh breeze by the river.  She snuggled Nobunaga on a cosy makeshift viewing platform to watch the reflection of the numerous lights on the straw boats cruising peacefully down the river.  He was kind.  Trusting her husband's eternal love, like other women in Owari, it was a romantic memory Kicho treasured for many years."

Even though Kicho&Nobunaga is a historical fiction book, this event did happen.  It is important to know that Nobunaga and Nohime did do various activities together besides the war and politics.

Nobunaga no tame!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Nobunaga Tribute

I found a nice Nobunaga tribute video on YouTube earlier today.  The video has snippets of various Nobunaga movies and the like.  It is done well and I like it.  Here is the link:

Also Rekishijin magazine has a new issue on Sengoku Warlord Rival Confrontation.  Rekishijin is one of my favorite Japanese history magazines due to it beautiful pictures and color graphics.

Tenka no tame!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Nobunaga Podcast

The Samurai Archives has an excellent podcast on Nobunaga.  It is over a hour long with many topics that are discussed.  Here are some of the key topics that were discussed on the podcast.

  1. Tyrant/Hero
  2. Very complex, broke the mold, and unorthodox
  3. Other Sengoku daimyo looked inward, Nobunaga looked outward.  How can Japan play in the outer world.
  4. Small discussion on the history of the Oda family.
  5. Battle of Okehazama, Nobunagaesque.
  6. His character
  7. Political history/warfare
There were many more topics that were discussed on the podcast.  I highly recommend that you listen because you can learn a lot from the podcast.  Here is the link to the podcast:

Nobunaga no tame!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy 2014

Happy New Year friends of Nobunaga!  As always, I like to celebrate the New Year Nobunaga style with his famous celebration at Gifu Castle in 1574.  There is a great passage in Kicho&Nobunaga I like to share with you on this famous event.

Kicho&Nobunaga (Rumi Komonz, p. 102)

"I'll show you something," Nobunaga beamed at Kicho in the private lounge.
"It is a beautiful box.  I wonder what treasure is inside."  Nobunaga watched Kicho, smiling.
Kicho sat in front of a large box and bowed according to the manners for appreciating an art work.  She took off the lacquered lid adorned with gold inlays and put her hands inside.  Lifting a large lacquered pot, her face turned pale and she dropped it.
"Be careful Kicho."
"Is this who I think it is?"
"It is a skull, cured and lacquered with many layers.  It belonged to Azai Nagamasa.  It is a prize head, my trophy.  He betrayed me and we fought; we made amends and fought five times.  I gave him Ichi.  I wanted him to be my brother.  He eventually chose death rather than to be my subordinate, but he did not murder-suicide with her.  I am going to show everyone that there was no hatred between us.  We shared a mutual respect."
Kicho heard afterwards that Nobunaga showed off the trophy to his major retainers at the New Year's party, and when Monkey admired it everyone followed suit.  Kicho wondered if they were all trying to please their master.  By this time, there weren't many who dared to disapprove of anything Nobunaga did."

Nobunaga no tame!  Tenka no tame!  Owari ni hikari wo!