Kokubun Tanemochi (国分胤茂)

Tanemochi KOKUBUN (c.1197 to December 22, 1242) was a samurai, who is said to have been in Miyagi County, Mutsu Province (later Rikuzen Province) in the Kamakura period. He is said to have been the second family head of the Kokubun clan (in Mutsu Province), but there is a possibility that he may not have existed.

It is said that the Kokubun clan (in Mutsu Province) was samurai who had possessed the southern part of Miyagi County, Mutsu Province from the period of the Northern and Southern Courts to the Sengoku period (the period of warring states), and this clan originated from Tanemichi, who took his family name from Kokubun in Shimousa Province and relocated to Kokubun in Miyagi County, which was given to him as reward grants for the Battle of Oshu. According to the family tree edited by Yoshikazu (義和) SAKUMA in Sendai Domain in the Edo period, Tanemochi is a son of Tanenaga and a grandson of Tanemichi, and his mother is a daughter of Taneyori TO. He married a daughter of TAIRA no Naotsune (平直常), and had two sons and two daughters. Taneshige (胤重) KOKUBUN and Mochiharu (茂晴) KOKUBUN were the sons. The daughters got married to Antai TAKEISHI (武石安泰) and Yorikuni MUTO (武藤頼国) respectively.

His childhood name was Kokujumaru (国寿丸). He called himself Kotaro, and he was officially ranked jugoinoge (junior fifth rank, lower grade) and assumed the post of Mino no kami (Governor of Mino Province). He was born in Kokubun in 1197, and died at the age of 46 on December 22, 1242. It is said that he succeeded to his grandfather due to the early death of his father, and FUJIWARA no Yoritsune, seii taishogun (literally, "great general who subdues the barbarians"), appointed him shusei (third-ranked official of Gunji) in Oshu in 1221.

However, it is only in the family tree made out in Mutsu Province that refers to the grant of Kokubun-no-sho (国分荘) to Tanemichi, and some records show his activities in Shimousa even after the Battle of Oshu, as well as the existence of his descendants there. None of the family trees prepared in Shimousa Province includes the names of Tanenaga and Tanemochi. If we take the view of the theory that presumes that it was the drawer of the family tree who associated the Kokubun clan in Mutsu with Tanemichi KOKUBUN, a Kamakura gokenin (an immediate vassal of the shogunate in the Kamakura), Tanemochi would be an imaginary figure created to relate the Kokubun clan to Tanemichi KOKUBUN. Even considering other possible theories, one that presumes he continued to stay in Shimousa in spite of the reward grants in Mutsu and another that presumes that he relocated to Mutsu, the existence of Tanemochi is still doubtful due to unreliable data of the family trees.

[Original Japanese]