Tokudaiji Kinyoshi (徳大寺公能)

Kinyoshi TOKUDAIJI (1115 - September 9, 1161) was Kugyo (the top court officials) in the late Heian period. His father was Saneyoshi TOKUDAIJI, and his mother was a daughter of FUJIWARA no Akitaka. His children included Sanesada, Saneie, Sanemori, Kinshi (empress of Emperor Goshirakawa), Masaruko (empress of Emperor Konoe and Emperor Nijo), and Bomon-dono (who was adored by Goshirakawa and gave birth to Imperial Princess Atsuko).

After being appointed to the positions of Ecchu no Kami (Governor of Ecchu Province), Ushosho (Minor Captain of the Right Division of Inner Palace Guards), Sachujo (Middle Captain of the Left Division of Inner Palace Guards), and Kurodo (chamberlain), he assumed the positions of Kurodo no To (head chamberlain) in 1137 and Sangi (Councilor) of Emperor Sutoku in the following year. At the height of the Kanin-ryu (a Northern House faction of the Fujiwara clan), Kinyoshi assumed the positions of Gon Chunagon (provisional vice-councilor of state), Chunagon (vice-councilor of state), Uemon no Kami (Captain of the Right Division of Outer Palace Guards), and Kebiishi no Betto (Superintendent of the Imperial Police); however, his advancement to a higher position was hindered due to the abdication of Sutoku and Taikenmonin's (FUJIWARA no Shoshi's) entry into monkhood. Once Goshirakawa ascended the Imperial throne, Kinyoshi's daughter Kinshi became his empress and Kinyoshi was rapidly promoted to Udaisho (Major Captain of the Right Division of Inner Palace Guards) in 1156 and Gon Dainagon (provisional chief councilor of state) in 1157.

There are differences as to the reaction caused by Emperor Nijo's request for Masaruko's reentry into the Dairi (Imperial Palace) to serve for him: in the "Heike Monogatari" (The tale of the Heike), Kinyoshi is described to have reacted positively while in the "Imakagami" (The Mirror of the Present), he is portrayed to have been baffled. He was entitled to Shonii (Senior Second Rank), Udaijin (Minister of the Right) in August 1160, but died at the age of 47 as incumbent Udaijin in September of the following year.

Kinyoshi excelled in various fields such as wind and string instruments, waka (traditional Japanese poetry), and recitation of poems; in the field of waka, in particular, he had close ties to his brother-in-law, FUJIWARA no Toshinari, and his former retainer, Saigyo. Thirty-two of his waka were collected in the Chokusenshu (anthology of poems collected by Imperial command) including the "Shika Wakashu" (a kind of anthology of poems collected by Imperial command).

[Original Japanese]