Fujiwara no Morotaka (藤原師高)

FUJIWARA no Morotaka (year of birth unknown - July 6, 1177) was a zuryo (custodial governor) who lived in the late Heian period. Morotaka was also called Kaga no kami (Governor of Kaga Province) Morotaka. Morotaka's father was known as Saiko (secular name: FUJIWARA no Moromitsu), who was an Emperor Goshirakawa's influential vassal. Morotaka had an uncle named FUJIWARA no Narichika, and younger brothers named FUJIWARA no Morotsune and FUJIWARA no Morohira.

Starting with Kebiishi no jo (second officer of the imperial police bureau) of Fifth Rank, Morotaka was his father's patronage appointee to the post of a Kokushi (provincial governor) of Kaga Province who was remotely appointed, having his younger brother FUJIWARA no Morotsune as his mokudai (deputy kokushi, or a deputy provincial governor).

In 1177, a conflict arose between Morotaka and Hakusan Yusen-ji Temple which was a branch temple of Enryaku-ji Temple, which turned out to be a commotion which was known as by Hieizan Daishu (warrior monks residing in the zendo of Mt. Hiei) who marched en masse carrying the sacred mikoshi (portable shrine carried in festivals), resulting in Morotaka's banishment to Idota of Owari Province and Morotsune's imprisonment. Concurrently, Tendai Zasu (head priest) Myoun was also dismissed and banished to Izu Province, but the general public rescued Myoun on his way to Izu, thus sending him back to Mt. Hiei. Emperor Goshirakawa, on learning about the rescued Myoun, ordered TAIRA no Kiyomori to attack Mt. Hiei.

Immediately after the imperial order was given, however, Yukitsuna TADA informed Kiyomori of the Shishigatani plot in secrecy, which caused Kiyomori to change his mind and redirected his army of the Taira clan which had been gathered for attacking Mt. Hiei to the capture of the plotters. Morotaka's father Saiko was involved in the plot as a main culprit and was thereby arrested and beheaded, and Morotaka himself was also killed by OGUMANOGUNJI (which also read KOGUMANOGUNJI and KUGUMANOGUNJI) Koresue in June or July, 1177, which was followed by the execution of Morotsune, Morohira and their three retainers ('roto' in Japanese) by decapitation at the Rokujo-gawara riverbed.

[Original Japanese]