Kobayakawa Sukekage (小早川祐景)

Sukekage KOBAYAKAWA is a busho (Japanese military commander) over the end of the Kamakura period and the period of the Northern and Southern Courts. He is the third family head of the Kobayakawa clan. His father is Kagemune KOBAYAKAWA.

When Takauji ASHIKAGA led a rebellion against the Kamakura bakufu in Shinomura Hachiman-gu Shrine, Tanba Province (Kameoka City, Kyoto Prefecture) and sent the reminder of troops to some provinces in April 1333, Sukekage promptly hastened to join as a member of the Ashikaga army to capture Rokuhara Tandai (an administrative and judicial agency in Rokuhara, Kyoto). At this time, Sadahira KOBAYAKAWA from the head family of the Kobayakawa clan was with Rokuhara Tandai. He was evacuated from the place where the Hojo clan committed suicide to return to his home ground, and then his territory was forfeited by Kenmu Government. However, it seems that the territory of the Takehara-Kobayakawa clan was also forfeited by Kenmu Government sometimes since this year.

After separated from Kenmu Government in 1335, Takauji ASHIKAGA was defeated in a battle against the troops of Yoshisada NITTA in Kyoto in January 1336. When Takauji recruited troops in February in Hyogo on his way to Kyushu, Sukekage joined again. He was approved of Jitoshiki (manager and lord of manor) in Takehara no sho (manor), Tsu District, Aki Province by Takauji. He became a direct subordinate of the Ashikaga clan and fought against the Southern Court after this event.

He fought in a battle against the troops of the Southern Court, and died on March 1, 1338.

Kagemune KOBAYAKAWA and his son Sukekage made great military exploits for Takauji ASHIKAGA during the Kenmu era, which led to the expansion of power of the Takehara-Kobayakawa clan.

There are other Nanori (announcement of one's name) for Sukekage, such as Masakage, Masukage, Murakage and Yoshikage, therefore it is still unknown how he was actually called. However, 'Sukekage' is used for convenience sake in this explanation.

[Original Japanese]