Dainagon (chief councilor of state) (大納言)

An official rank under the Ritsuryo system (a system of centralized government based on the ritsuryo code) in ancient Japan. A detailed description is provided on this page.

Name of a plant. "Dainagon" is a kind of adzuki bean belonging to the family Fabaceae and genus Vigna. The skin has a unique flavor, and when boiled thoroughly to make crushed beans, the soft texture of the skin balances well with the bean paste, thus it is often used in upscale Japanese confectionery.

Dainagon Co., Ltd., a Japanese confectioner in Osaka City.
Known for 'Akanemaru goshiki dorayaki.'
=>Akanemaru honpo Dainagon

"Dainagon" (chief councilor of state) is a post ranking below Sadaijin (minister of the left), Udaijin (minister of the right), and Naidaijin (inner minister) in Daijokan (Grand Council of State), the highest organ in the Imperial Court, and corresponds to Suke (assistant director) in the Shitokan (four classifications of bureaucrats' ranks). Its corresponding Chinese names are Asho (亜相) and Akai (亜槐). Both mean after (亜) the minister (相, 槐門). It is referred to as 'Ryusaku no kan' ('龍作の官', post created by a dragon), due to the note 'Dragon, create a nagon!' in Shokyo (one of the five classic texts of Confucianism). Corresponds to Shosanmi (Senior Third Rank). In the Edo period, the Tokugawa Shogun family, Owari Tokugawa family, Kishu Tokugawa family, and Sunpu Tokugawa family (discontinued) of the Tokugawa clan were assigned.

The main function was to assist the tasks of the minister and to attend and execute court councils, and the number of regular personnel was originally four, but reduced to two in 705 when Chunagon (vice-councilor of state) was reintroduced. However, during the Heian period, Gon Dainagon (temporary Dainagon with three regular personnel, which was later increased) was established, and the number of regular personnel practically increased. Later, eight personnel, at the most, were assigned, but since the reign of Emperor Gotoba, the number of regular personnel was fixed at six, and in many cases, Gon Dainagon was assigned without the official Dainagon. Under the Dokyo administration, hoshin that were similar in rank as Dainagon, were established, and monks were assigned.

[Original Japanese]