Emperor Go-Kōmyō

Emperor Go-Kōmyō

Emperor Go-Kōmyō (後光明天皇 "Go-Kōmyō-tennō") (April 20, 1633 - October 30, 1654) was the 110th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. He reigned from November 14 1643 to October 30 1654. His personal name was Tsuguhito (紹仁) and his pre-accession title was "Suga-no-miya" (素鵞宮).Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). "Annales des empereurs du japon," p. 412.]

This 17th century sovereign was named after the 14th century Nanboku-chō Emperor Kōmyō and "go-" (後), translates literally as "later;" and thus, he could be called the "Later Emperor Kōmyō". The Japanese word "go" has also been translated to mean the "second one;" and in some older sources, this emperor may be identified as "Kōmyō, the second," or as Kōmyō II."

Genealogy

He was the fourth son of Emperor Go-Mizunoo. His mother was the daughter of the Minister of the Left. Empress Meishō was his elder sister by a different mother.
*Lady-in-waiting: Niwata Hideko (庭田秀子)
**First daughter: Imperial Princess Takako (孝子内親王) (Empress Dowager Reisei (礼成門院))

Events of Go-Kōmyō's life

He became Crown Prince in Kan'ei 19 (1642). The following year, he became Emperor upon the abdication of his elder sister, Empress Meishō. His reign corresponds to that of Shōguns Tokugawa Iemitsu and Tokugawa Ietsuna. He expressed opposition to the shogunate with its violent nature.
* "Kanei 20", on the 29th day of the 9th month (1643}: The empress ceded her throne to her brother; and Go-Kōmyō accepted the title on the 5th day of the 11th month. [see above] ]

* "Shōhō 2", on the 23rd day of the 4th month (1645): The Shogun was elevated to the rank of "sadaijin" in the "kugyō." [see above] ]

* "Keian 2", on the 20th day of the 2nd month (1649): There was a major earthquake in Edo. [see above] ]
* "Keian 4" (1651): Tokugawa Ietsuna was proclaimed Shogun. [see above] ]
* "Keian 5", 5th month (1652): "Nihon Ōdai Ichiran" is first published in Kyoto under the patronage of the tairō Sakai Tadakatsu, lord of the Obama Domain of Wakasa Province. [see above] ]

* "Jōō 2", on the 12th day of the 8th month (1653): A violent fire destroyed a large part of the imperial palace and many temples which were nearby. Shortly thereafter, several girls, aged 12-14 years, were imprisoned for arson involving this fire as well as other fires in Miyako. [see above] ]
* "Jōō 3", on the 6th day of the 7th month (1654): Ingen, a Buddhist priest who would eventually become very influential, arrived at Nagasaki from China. His intention was to reform the practice of Buddhism in Japan. [see above] ]
* "Jōō 3", on the 20th day of the 9th month (1654): The emperor died; and he was buried in Sen'yōji Temple (泉涌寺) on the 15th day of the 10th month. [http://www.kunaicho.go.jp/ryobo/guide/110/index.html; Titsingh, p. 413. ]

Kugyō

"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. Even during those years in which the court's actual influence outside the palace walls was minimal, the hierarchic organization persisted.

In general, this elite group included only three to four men at a time. These were hereditary courtiers whose experience and background would have brought them to the pinnacle of a life's career. During Go-Kōmyō's reign, this apex of the "Daijō-kan" included:
* "Sadaijin"
* "Udaijin"
* "Nadaijin"
* "Dainagon"

Eras of Go-Kōmyō's reign

The years of Go-Kōmyō's reign are more specifically identified by more than one era name or "nengō". [see above] ]

* "Kan'ei" (1624-1644)
* "Shōhō" (1644-1648)
* "Keian" (1648-1652)
* "Jōō" (1652-1655)

References

* Screech, Timon. (2006). "Secret Memoirs of the Shoguns: Isaac Titsingh and Japan, 1779-1822." London: RoutledgeCurzon. ISBN 0-700-71720-X
* Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). [Siyun-sai Rin-siyo/Hayashi Gahō, 1652] , "Nipon o daï itsi ran; ou, Annales des empereurs du Japon, tr. par M. Isaac Titsingh avec l'aide de plusieurs interprètes attachés au comptoir hollandais de Nangasaki; ouvrage re., complété et cor. sur l'original japonais-chinois, accompagné de notes et précédé d'un Aperçu d'histoire mythologique du Japon, par M. J. Klaproth." Paris: Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland. [http://books.google.com/books?id=18oNAAAAIAAJ&dq=nipon+o+dai+itsi+ran ..Click link for digitized, full-text copy of this book (in French)]


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