Imperial Prince Tamehira (為平親王)

Imperial Prince Tamehira (952 - December 15, 1010) was a member of the Imperial family during the Heian period and Emperor Murakami's fourth Prince. His mother was Chugu (the second consort of the emperor), FUJIWARA no Anshi (Yasuko). His real brothers were Emperor Reizei and Emperor Enyu. His wife was MINAMONO no Takaakira's daughter. His highest official rank was Ippon (the first of Imperial Princes' rank), Shikibu sho (the Ministry in charge of ceremonies). He was called Somedono Shikibu kyo (the Minister in charge of ceremonies).

In 965 he had a coming-of-age ceremony and Sadaijin (Minister of the Left), MINAMOTO no Takaakira put the crown on him, then on the following year, he married Takaakira's daughter. Emperor Murakami loved Imperial Prince Tamehira, he let the Prince follow his example of having the Prince's wedding at Shoyosha of the Imperial Palace where the Emperor had his own wedding with Anshi (Yasuko), the Prince was treated as the future successor to the Imperial throne. It is presumed that the Emperor Murakami tried to secure the future by having Takaakira be the Imperial Prince Tamehira's supervisor, while Takaakira was the first on the list between the Kujo family where Anshi (Yasuko) was born from, and Shisei Imperial family (Imperial family who were given the surname and demoted from nobility to subject).

After Emperor Murakami died the following year, Emperor Reizei, who was the Prince's older brother, succeeded to the throne however, he had many eccentricities and was born weak although he was attractive in appearance, when FUJIWARA no Saneyori was the Chancellor (associate regent) and the Imperial Prince Tamehira, who was bright, was expected to become Crown Prince. Takaakira wished the Imperial Prince to become Crown Prince since he could become his maternal relative, in fact, Imperial Prince Morihira (later called Emperor Enyu) became Crown Prince. It was (the reason why the Imperial Prince Tamehira did not become Crown Prince) presumed that the Fujiwara clan's concern about Takaakira having more political power, himself already being the maternal relative to Imperial Prince Tamehira and had a certain position in the Imperial Palace. During this time Anshi (Yasuko) and Aihime (Anshi's younger sister and MINAMOTO no Takaakira's Empress) both had passed away, although the Kujo family tried to exclude Takaakira and Imperial Prince Tamehira from their poison, they changed their attitude later on.

After that MINAMOTO no Takaakira said that he intended to let Emperor abdicate from the throne, he was demoted to Dazaifu (the Anna Incident). It was presumed that this was a plan carefully organized by MINAMOTO no Mitsunaka and the Fujiwara clan who tried to attain stronger political power.

In 985 the Princess Enshi (Tsuyako, Imperial Prince Tamehira's daughter) made Emperor Kazan's Imperial consort's bridal entry into the court when she was fourteen years old, and she became Nyogo (a high ranking lady in the court), however the Emperor entered into the priesthood just after six months. After the Emperor went into the priesthood, Princess Enshi (Tsuyako) married to FUJIWARA no Sanesuke and died when she was twenty seven years old in 998.

Imperial Prince Tamehira went into the priesthood in October 1010, and he died one month later when he was fifty nine years old.

[Original Japanese]