Minamoto no Yorinobu (源頼信)

MINAMOTO no Yorinobu was a busho (Japanese military commander) in the mid-Heian period. He was the third son of MINAMOTO no Mitsunaka (also known as TADA no Manju and TADA no Shinpochi) who formed the Genji samurai (worrior) corps in Tada, Settsu Province (Tada, Kawanishi City, Hyogo Prefecture, as of now). He was the founder of the Kawachi-Genji (Minamoto clan), which was based in Tsuboi, Ishikawa County, Kawachi Province (present Tsuboi, Habikino City, Osaka, as of now).

Brief Personal History

Like his elder brother Yorimitsu, he served Sessho Kanpaku (regent and chief adviser to the Emperor) FUJIWARA no Michikane. After the death of Michikane, he served FUJIWARA no Michinaga. He successively held the posts such as, Zuryo (the head of the provincial governors) of various countries and Chinju-fu shogun (Commander-in-Chief of the Defense of the North). He settled in Kawachi Province, cultivated Tsuboi-so (shoen (manor in medieval Japan)) in Ishikawa County and built Koroho castle.

He suppressed TAIRA no Tadatsune War when he was the kokushu (head of provincial governors) of Kai Province. It was the first step for Kawachi-Genji (Minamoto clan) to debouch into the east. He excelled in bravery, and he and others including TAIRA no Korehira, TAIRA no Muneyori and FUJIWARA no Yasumasa were called the big four of FUJIWARA no Michinaga or the big four.

It is thought that TAIRA no Tadatsune, who had fought with TAIRA no Naokata for four years, surrendered easily because he had established the relation of master to servant with Yorinobu beforehand.

After the war, samurai in Bando started to serve Kawachi-Genji. It built foundation for their future dominion in the east and Buke-Genji (Minamoto clan as samurai families).

His grave is located in the remains of Tsuho-ji Temple, within the family temple of the Kawachi-Genji, Habikino City, Osaka Prefecture, and so are Yoriyoshi and Yoshiie's.

Record of offices and ranks held

* Dates are based on the old calendar. On February 19, 987, he was appointed to sahyoe no shojo (Third-ranked Assistant Officer of Sahyoe-fu, the Left Division of Middle Palace Guards).

On September 2, 999, he was appointed to Kozuke no suke (Assistant Governor of Kozuke Province)

On February 26, 1001, he might resign Kozuke. In 1012, he was former Hitachi no suke (Assistant Governor of Hitachi Province) (according to the article of leap October 23, "Mido Kanpakuki" (FUJIWARA no Michinaga's diary)). In August 1023, he was appointed to Chinju-fu shogun (Commander-in-Chief of the Defense of the North).

In 1028, he was former Ise no kami (Governor of Ise Province) (according to the article of June 21, "Sakeiki" (Diary of MINAMOTO no Tsuneyori)). In 1029, he was appointed to Kai no kami (the governor of Kai Province).

On January 6, 1031, he was promoted to Jushiinoge (Junior Fourth Rank, Lower Grade) and remained in the position of Kai no kami (the governor of Kai Province).

On February 8, 1032, he was transferred to Mino as Mino no kami (the governor of Mino Province).

On October 14, 1036, he was transferred to Sagami as Sagami no kami (governor of Sagami Province).

In 1047, he was promoted to Jushiijo (Junior Fourth Rank, Upper Grade) and appointed to Kawachi no kami (the governor of Kawachi Province).

[Original Japanese]