Isshiki Yoshitsura (一色義貫)

Yoshitsura ISSHIKI (1400 - June 14, 1440) was a shugo daimyo (shugo, which were Japanese provincial military governors, that became daimyo, which were Japanese feudal lords) in the early Muromachi period. He was a son of Mitsunori ISSHIKI. His official rank was Hyobu-shoyu (junior assistant minister of the Hyobusho Ministry of Military). He became Sakyo no daibu (Master of the Eastern Capital Offices). He became Shuri no daibu (Master of the Office of Palace Repairs). His original name was Yoshinori.

In 1409 he succeeded to the family head due to the death of his father Mitsunori. He had served the Ashikaga shogunate since the period of the fourth shogun Yoshimochi ASHIKAGA; he served at Samurai-dokoro (the Board of Retainers), and was assigned as shugo of Yamashiro Province in 1418 and in 1434, and became a dominant shugo daimyo of four provinces, Mikawa, Wakasa, Tango and Yamashiro (besides those posts he was appointed bungun-shugo [provincial constable of specially given province] of Kaito County and Chita County of Owari Province). As a military man, he performed great exploits, as he subjugated Mitsumasa KITABATAKE of Ise Province, and subdued the army of Mitsusuke AKAMATSU who had run away in 1427. For those achievements, he was appointed one of Shisiki (director generals of Samurai-dokoro) and participated in the government of the shogunate, however, in the period of the sixth shogun Yoshinori ASHIKAGA, he gradually became opposed to the shogunate as he refused gubu (to attend shogun at events), and was even kept away from the government for some period.

Through the good offices of Kanrei (shogunal deputy) Mitsuie HATAKEYAMA and others, Yoshitsura returned to the government. In 1440, when the Yuki War started in the Kanto region, he departed for the front to subdue the Ochi clan of Yamato Province by order of Yoshinori. Yoshitsura was charged with hiding the remnants (Tokiie ISSHIKI and others) of Mochiuji ASHIKAGA who had raised an army against the bakufu in the Eikyo War, and he and Mochiyori TOKI were hunted by the army of Yoshonori. His troop was attacked from front and behind by Nobuhide TAKEDA, and was defeated. On May 15 of the same year, he committed suicide together with his family at Ryumon-ji Temple on Mt. Shigi in Yamato Province. His age at death was 41. His Buddhist name was Anyoji-Taiun.

It is said that since Yoshitsura became a dominant shugo who governed four provinces, he was regarded as a threat by Yoshinori, and murdered deliberately. Also inside the Isshiki clan, there was a fight between his uncle Mochinori ISSHIKI and his nephew Norichika ISSHIKI over the succession to the family head. After the family had killed themselves, their territory was divided and the Isshiki clan fell.

[Original Japanese]