Akahashi Toko (赤橋登子)

Toko AKAHASHI (1306 - June 2, 1365) lived in the Kamakura period, the Northern and Southern Courts period and the Muromachi period and was the legitimate wife of Takauji ASHIKAGA, who was the first Seii Taishogun (literally, "great general who subdues the barbarians") of the Muromachi bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun). She was a daughter of Hisatoki HOJO and Moritoki HOJO, who was the last Shikken (regent) of the Kamakura bakufu, was her elder brother. She had children, Yoshiakira ASHIKAGA who was the second Seii Taishogun of the Muromachi bakufu, Motouji ASHIKAGA who was the first Kamakura kubo (Governor-general of the Kanto region) and Yoriko ASHIKAGA who was the Empress of the Emperor Suko. Her rank was Junii (Junior Second Rank) and Jusanmi (Junior Third Rank). Her formal name was TAIRA no Nariko.


As a part of measures to reconcile the relationship between the Hojo clan and Ashikaga clan, she married Takauji ASHIKAGA and gave birth to the heir, Senjuo (later, Yoshiakira) and she went through many hardships that Yoshiakira was sent to Kamakura as a hostage for the Hojo family and that as Takauji later turned against the Kamakura bakufu, as a result, the Hojo family including her elder brother, Moritoki was ruined.. After that also, the disturbance of war between the Southern Court and the Northern Court intensified and her unhappy situation continued as a confrontation between her sons, Yoshiakira and Motouji evolved after the death of her husband, Takauji, but she watched the growth of her grandson Yoshimitsu ASHIKAGA (later, Yoshimitsu) and died in 1365. It seems that her family relationship with Takauji and Yoshiakira was good and, after her death, by Yoshiakira's arrangement, a part of her ashes was buried in the temple where a part of ashes of Takauji's mother, Kiyoko UESUGI, and Takauji had been buried.

[Original Japanese]