Emperor Daigo

Emperor Daigo
Emperor of Japan

Emperor Daigo
Reign 897–930
Coronation 897
Born January 18, 885
Birthplace Heian Kyō (Kyōto)
Died October 23, 930 (aged 45)
Place of death Heian Kyō (Kyōto)
Buried Nochi no Yamashina no misasagi (Kyoto)
Predecessor Uda
Successor Suzaku
Consort Fujiwara no Onshi
Father Uda
Mother Fujiwara no Inshi

Emperor Daigo (醍醐天皇 Daigo-tennō?, January 18, 885 – October 23, 930) was the 60th emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession.[2]

Daigo's reign spanned the years from 897 through 930.[3] He is named after his place of burial.


Traditional narrative

Before his ascension of the Chrysanthemum Throne, his personal name (imina) was Atsuhito (敦仁親王?)[4] or Ono-tei.[5]

Atsuhito-shinnō was the eldest son of his predecessor, Emperor Uda. His mother was Fujiwara no Taneko, daughter of the minister of the center, Fujiwara no Takafuji.[6] He succeeded the throne after his father, the Emperor Uda, abdicated in 897.

Daigo had 21 empresses, imperial consorts, and concubines; he had 36 imperial sons and daughters.[7]

Events of Daigo's life

The era name was changed in 898 to mark the beginning of Emperor Daigo's reign.[6] The highlight of Daigo's 34-year reign was that he ruled by himself without the regency of the Fujiwara clan, though he himself was part Fujiwara.

  • July 6, 897 (Kanpyō 9, 3rd day of the 7th month ): In the 10th year of Uda-tennō 's reign (宇多天皇10年), Emperor Uda abdicated; and his eldest son received the succession ("senso").[8]
  • 897 (Kanpyō 9, 5th day of the 7th month): Emperor Daigo formally acceded to the throne (sokui).[9]
  • December 7, 899 (Shōtai 2, 1st day of the 11th month): The sun entered into the winter solstice, and all the great officials of the empire presented themselves in Daigo's court.[10]
  • February 2, 900 (Shōtai 3, 3rd day of the 1st month): Daigo went to visit his father in the place Uda had chosen to live after the abdication.[11]
  • 900 (Shōtai 3, 10th month): The former Emperor Uda traveled to Mount Kōya (高野山 , Kōya-san?) in what is now Wakayama prefecture to the south of Osaka. He visited the temples on the slopes of the mountain.[12]
  • January 23, 901 (Engi 1, 1st day of the 1st month): There was an eclipse of the sun.[12]
  • 901 (Engi 1, 1st month): The Sugawara Michizane "incident" developed, but more details cannot be known because Daigo ordered that diaries and records from this period be burned.[7]
  • 906 (Engi 5, 4th month): Ki-no Tsurayuki presented the emperor with the compilation of the Kokin Wakashū, a collection of waka poetry.[13]
  • 909 (Engi 9, 4th month ): The sadaijin Fujiwara no Tokihira died at the age of 39. He was honored with the posthumous title of regent.[13]
  • 929 (Enchō 7, 8th month): Floods devastated the country and many perished.[14]
  • July 21, 930 (Enchō 8, 26th day of the 6th month): A huge black storm cloud traveled from the slopes of Mt. Atago to Heian-kyo accompanied by frightful thunder. Lightning struck the Imperial Palace. Both Senior Counselor Fuijwara-no Kiyotsura (also known as Miyoshi no Kiyoyuki) and Middle Controller of the Right Taira-no Mareyo and many other subaltern officers were killed and their bodies were consumed in the subsequent fires. The deaths were construed as an act of revenge by the unsettled spirit of the late Sugawara Michizane.[15]
  • October 16, 930 (Enchō 8, 22nd day of the 9th month): In the 34th year of Daigo-tennō 's reign (醍醐天皇34年), the emperor fell ill and, fearing that he might not survive, Daigo abdicated. At this point, the succession (senso) was said to have been received by a his son. Shortly thereafter, Emperor Suzaku is said to have acceded to the throne (sokui).[16]
  • October 23, 930 (Enchō 8, 29th day of the 9th month): Emperor Daigo entered the Buddhist priesthood in the very early morning hours. As a monk, he took the Buddhist name Hō-kongō and, shortly thereafter, he died at the age of 46.[17] This monk was buried in the precincts of Daigo-ji, which is why the former-emperor's posthumous name became Daigo-tennō.[14]

Daigo also ordered construction of several halls in the Daigo-ji, such as the Yakushi hall.

The actual site of Daigo's grave is known.[1] This emperor is traditionally venerated at a memorial Shinto shrine (misasagi) at Kyoto.

The Imperial Household Agency designates this location as Daigo's mausoleum. It is formally named Nochi no Yamashina no misasagi[18] in Fushimi-ku, Kyoto.


Kugyō (公卿?) is a collective term for the very few most powerful men attached to the court of the Emperor of Japan in pre-Meiji eras.[19]

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 Daigo's reign, this apex of the Daijō-kan included:

Eras of Daigo's reign

The years of Diago's reign are more specifically identified by more than one era name or nengō.[21]

Consorts and children

Empress: Fujiwara no Onshi (藤原穏子) (885-954), daughter of Kampaku Fujiwara no Mototsune (藤原基経)

  • Imperial Prince Yasuakira (保明親王) (903-923) (2nd son), Emperor Daigo's crown prince, called Bunkengentaishi (文献彦太子)
  • Imperial Princess Koushi (康子内親王) (919-957), married to Udaijin Fujiwara no Morosuke (藤原師輔)
  • Imperial Prince Hirokira (also known as Yutaakira 寛明親王) (923-952) (Emperor Suzaku)
  • Imperial Prince Nariakira (成明親王) (926-967) (Emperor Murakami)

Nyōgo: Imperial Princess Ishi (為子内親王) (?-899), daughter of Emperor Kōkō

  • Imperial Princess Kanshi (勧子内親王) (1st daughter) (899-910)

Nyōgo: Minamoto no Washi (源和子) (?-947), daughter of Emperor Kōkō

  • Imperial Princess Keishi (慶子内親王) (903-923) (4th daughter), married to Imperial Prince Atsukata (son of Emperor Uda)
  • Imperial Prince Tsuneakira (常明親王) (906-944) (5th son)
  • Imperial Prince Noriakira (式明親王) (907-967) (6th son)
  • Imperial Prince Ariakira (有明親王) (910-961) (7th son)
  • Imperial Princess Shōshi (韶子内親王) (918-980), 13th Saiin in Kamo Shrine 921-930; later, married to Tachibana no Korekaze (橘惟風)
  • Imperial Princess Seishi/Tadako (斉子内親王) (921-936), 27th Saiō in Ise Shrine 936, but she didn't go to Ise because of her death.

Nyōgo: Fujiwara no Nōshi (藤原能子) (?-964), daughter of Udaijin Fujiwara no Sadakata (藤原定方); later, married to Fujiwara no Saneyori (藤原実頼)

Nyōgo: Court Lady Fujiwara no Wakako (藤原和香子) (?-935), daughter of Dainagon Fujiwara no Sadakuni (藤原定国)

Koui: A daughter of Minamoto no Noboru (源昇の娘)

  • Imperial Prince Shigeakira (重明親王) (906-954) (4th son), author of the Ribuōki (吏部王記)

Koui: Princess Manshi (満子女王) (?-920), daughter of Prince Sukemi (輔相王)

  • Imperial Princess Shūshi (修子内親王) (905/6-933) (8th daughter), married to Imperial Prince Motoyoshi (son of Emperor Yōzei)
  • Imperial Princess Fushi (普子内親王) (909-947), married to Minamoto no Kiyohira (源清平), later, married to Fujiwara no Toshitsura (藤原俊連)
  • Minamoto no Genshi (源厳子) (916-?)

Koui: Fujiwara no Yoshihime (藤原淑姫) (?-949), daughter of Sangi Fujiwara no Sugane (藤原菅根)

  • Imperoal Prince Nagaakira (長明親王) (913-953) (9th son)
  • Imperial Prince Kaneakira (兼明親王) (914-987) (11th son), also called saki no chūshoō (前中書王). Chūshoō means Nakatsukasa-kyō (中務卿).
  • Minamoto no Yoriakira (源自明) (918-958)
  • Imperial Princess Hideko (英子内親王) (921-946), 29th Saiō in Ise Shrine 946, but she didn't go to Ise because of her death.

Koui: Minamoto no Chikako (源周子) (?-935), daughter of Sadaiben Minamoto no Tonau (源唱)

  • Imperial Princess Kinshi (勤子内親王) (904-938) (5th daughter), married to Udaijin Fujiwara no Morosuke (藤原師輔)
  • Imperial Princess Miyako (都子内親王) (905-981) (7th daughter)
  • Imperial Princess Toshiko (敏子内親王) (906-?)
  • Imperial Princess Masako (雅子内親王) (909-954) (10th daughter), 26th Saiō in Ise Shrine 932-936; later, married to Udaijin Fujiwara no Morosuke(藤原師輔)
  • Imperial Prince Tokiakira (時明親王) (912-927) (8th son)
  • Minamoto no Takaakira (源高明) (914-983) (10th son), also called Nishinomiya (西宮) Sadaijin
  • Minamoto no Kenshi (源兼子) (915-949), removed from the Imperial Family by receiving the family name from Emperor (Shisei Kōka, 賜姓降下) in 921
  • Imperial Prince Moriakira (盛明親王) (928-986), given the family name 'Minamoto' from Emperor (Shisei Kōka, 賜姓降下); later, Imperial Prince in 967.

Koui: Minamoto no Fūshi/Kaneko (源封子) (?-?), daughter of Ukyōdaibu Minamoto no Motomi (源旧鑒)

  • Imperial Princess Nobuko (宣子内親王) (902-920) (2nd daughter), 12th Saiin in Kamo Shrine 915-920
  • Imperial Prince Yoshiakira (克明親王) (903-927) (1st son), father of the musician Minamoto no Hiromasa (源博雅)
  • Imperial Princess Seishi (靖子内親王) (915-950), removed from the Imperial Family by receiving the family name from Emperor (Shisei Kōka, 賜姓降下) in 921; later, Imperial Princess in 930. married to Fujiwara no Morouji (藤原師氏)

Koui: Fujiwara no Senshi (藤原鮮子) (?-915), daughter of Iyonosuke (伊予介) Fujiwara no Tsuranaga(藤原連永)

  • Imperial Princess Takako/Kyōshi (恭子内親王) (902-915) (3rd daughter), 11th Saiin in Kamo Shrine 903-915
  • Imperial Prince Yoakira (代明親王) (904-937) (3rd son)
  • Imperial Princess Yoshiko/Enshi (婉子内親王) (904-969) (6th daughter), 14th Saiin in Kamo Shrine 932-967

Koui: Fujiwara no Kuwako (藤原桑子) (?-?), daughter of Chūnagon Fujiwara no Kanesuke (藤原兼輔)

  • Imperial Prince Akiakira (章明親王) (924-990)

Koui: A daughter of Minamoto no Toshimi (源敏相の娘)

  • Minamoto no Nobuakira (源允明) (919-942)

Koui: A daughter of Fujiwara no Korehira (藤原伊衡の娘)

  • Minamoto no Tameakira (源為明) (927-961)

See also


Japanese Imperial kamon — a stylized chrysanthemum blossom
  1. ^ a b Imperial Household Agency (Kunaichō): 醍醐天皇 (60)
  2. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial House of Japan, pp. 68-69.
  3. ^ Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, pp. 129-134; Brown, Delmer et al. (1979). Gokanshō, pp. 291-293; Varley, H. Paul. (1980). Jinnō Shōtōki, pp. 179-181.
  4. ^ Varley, p. 179; Brown, p. 264; prior to Emperor Jomei, the personal names of the emperors were very long and people did not generally use them; however, the number of characters in each name diminished after Jomei's reign.
  5. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, p. 8.
  6. ^ a b Varley, p. 179.
  7. ^ a b Brown, p. 293.
  8. ^ Tisingh, p. 129; Varley, p. 44; a distinct act of senso is unrecognized before Emperor Tenji; and all sovereigns except Jitō, Yōzei, Go-Toba, and Fushimi have senso and sokui in the same year until the reign of Emperor Go-Murakami.
  9. ^ Brown, p. 291; Varley, p. 44
  10. ^ Titsingh, p. 130.
  11. ^ Titsingh, pp. 130-131.
  12. ^ a b Titsingh, p. 131.
  13. ^ a b c Titsingh, p. 132.
  14. ^ a b Titsingh, p. 134.
  15. ^ Titsingh, p. 134; Brown, p. 293; Varley, p. 179-181.
  16. ^ Brown, p. 293; Varley, p. 44.
  17. ^ Titsingh, p. 134; Brown, p. 292; Varley, p. 181.
  18. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, p. 420.
  19. ^ Furugosho: Kugyō of Daigo-tennō.
  20. ^ a b c d e f g Brown, p. 291.
  21. ^ Titsingh, p. 129.


External links

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Emperor Uda
Emperor of Japan:

Succeeded by
Emperor Suzaku

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