Naizenshi (Imperial Table Office) (内膳司)

Naizenshi was an institution belonging to Kunaisho (Ministry of the Sovereign's Household) in Japanese government-regulated organization or facility, etc.
The Japanese reading is 'Uchinokashiwade no tsukasa.'
The government quarters were in the south side of Kuraryo (Bureau of Palace Storehouses). The classification of tsukasa was Daishi.

Official duties
Before the Taiho Ritsuryo (Taiho Code), it was a government office called Zenshiki, but when the Taiho Ritsuryo was formulated it was divided into Daizenshiki which cooked and served foods in a feast and Naizenshi which cooked, served and delivered foods for the Emperor's daily diet. In addition to the institution which had 'inside' and 'outside' like this, there were Tenyakuryo (the Bureau of Medicine), Naiyakushi (Palace Medical Office) and so on. Later in 896, it absorbed Enchishi (Gardens and Ponds Office) that belonged to Kunaisho as well.


Betto (an administrator). Naizenshi's betto. The fixed number was one. The official court rank was Sanmi (Third Rank). Afterwards it was set up and Dainagon (Major Counselor) or Chunagon (middle counselor) concurrently held the post.

Buzen (the administrator of Imperial Table Office) and Kami.

It corresponded to Kami (director) of Naizenshi in Shitokan (four classifications of bureaucrats' ranks). The fixed number was two. The official court rank was Shorokuinojo (Senior Sixth Rank, Upper Grade). It controlled Naizenshi and played a role of poison tester, too.
Before the establishment of Naizenshi the Takahashi clan (later, the Hamashima family) and the Azumi clan were in charge of serving foods to the Emperor and both clans were in charge of the director post as 'buzen' and 'Kami' was not put, but later the director post was assigned to the other clans, where the other clans identified themselves as 'Kami.'
After that, when both the Takahashi and Azumi clans were in charge of the director post, they identified themselves as 'buzen' (after the Azumi clan was at strife with the Takahashi clan and was extinguished during the time of Emperor Kanmu, and thus the position of buzen became seshu shiki [hereditary agency] of the Takahashi clan) and when the other clans except for the Takahashi and Azumi clans were in charge of the director post, they identified themselves as 'Kami.'

Tenzen (Suke [assistant director] of Naizenshi).

It corresponded to Suke of Naizenshi in Shitokan. The fixed number was six. The official court rank was Jushichiinoge (Junior Seventh Rank, Lower Grade).


It corresponded to Sakan (secretary) of Naizenshi in Shitokan. The fixed number was one. The official court rank was Daihatsuinojo (Greater Initial Rank, Upper Grade).

Kashiwadebe (working in the imperial kitchens). They were the officers in Naizenshi and Kanjin Zonin (lower-ranking government official). The fixed number was forty. Served as cook. Also, from Kashiwadebe, enosa and abiki no osa, who took fish, or Chikuma no mikuriya (manors of Imperial family and powerful shrines) no osa (Chikuma mikuriya director), who dedicated foods like Funa-zushi (crucian carp sushi) and so on, were appointed for some provinces in Gokinai capital region.

The other staffs were as follows.

Kanjin Zonin => shibu (low rank bureaucrats) => kanjin shicho (a manservant doing odd jobs) => kushicho (servant doing odd jobs).

The government offices belonging to Naizenshi

Shinmotsudokoro (Imperial Serving Office). Mizushidokoro (Imperial Kitchen). Niedono (institution for storage of offering foods).

[Original Japanese]