Jugoi (Junior Fifth Rank) (a rank in Japan) (従五位)

The term "Jugoi" (Junior Fifth Rank) refers to an Ikai (court rank) or a Shinkai (ranks granted to Shinto gods) in Japan. It ranks below Shogoi (Senior Fifth Rank), above Shorokui (Senior Sixth Rank). If it was conferred posthumously, it is referred to as Zo Jugoi (Jugoi conferred posthumously). Those who belonged to Jugoinoge (Junior Fifth Rank, Lower Grade) or a higher rank were regarded as nobles in the Japanese court rank system before the Meiji period. Jugoi was conferred on an eldest legitimate son of the peerage. Therefore, it was also used as a different name for an eldest legitimate son of the peerage.

Before and in the Edo period

Goi (Fifth Rank) was a rank corresponding to Kokushi (provincial governor), Chinjufu shogun (Commander-in-Chief of the Defense of the North) and Shodaibu (aristocracy lower than Kugyo) in the ritsuryo system. Those who belonged to Jugoinoge or a higher rank were called 'Tsuki' (通貴), and those who belonged to Jusanmi (Junior Third Rank) or a higher rank were called 'Ki' (貴). For this reason, Goi (Fifth Rank) and higher ranks were regarded as ranks for so-called Kizoku (nobles) written in kanji (Chinese characters) "貴族" (The first kanji "貴" meaning "nobility" was also used in the above-mentioned terms "Tsuki" [通貴] and "Ki" [貴].). Goi was divided into senior and junior subdivisions, each of which was further divided into upper and lower grades. Accordingly, Goi ranged from Jugoinoge (Junior Fifth Rank, Lower Grade) to Shogoinojo (Senior Fifth Rank, Upper Grade). Thus it may be said that it was necessary for nobles in the Heian period to belong to Jugoinoge or a higher rank.

While another name of Jugoinoge was Eishaku (the title of honorable position or honorable noble class), those who belonged to this rank were referred to as Daibu (Master). The first Qin Emperor in China conferred the rank of Daibu, which corresponded to Jugoi in Japan, on a pine tree. For this reason, Jugoi corresponding to Daibu was also referred to as Shoshaku (松爵) (literally, "peerage of a pine tree"). Therefore, conferring Jugoinoge was referred to as Joshaku (conferring a peerage).

Those who belonged to Jugoinoge were mainly members of branches of the Fujiwara clan who served as Kokushi for generations, members of the Tachibana, Takashina and other clans, members of Seiwa Genji (Minamoto clan) and Kanmu Heishi (Taira clan) that belonged to the military aristocracy. This rank was conferred on many middle-class nobles including the above-mentioned clan members.

This rank was conferred on nobles of the middle and lower ranks in Kyoto, riryo (government official) who went to Kyoto under the regime of the Kamakura bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun), members of the Minamoto clan, and influential gokenin (an immediate vassal of the shogunate in the Kamakura and Muromachi through Edo periods) from a family of pedigree, until the early Kamakura period. In the Muromachi period, it was also an Ikai conferred on members of Ashikaga Shogun Family or Shugo (provincial constable) as the first investiture. This rank was also conferred on many Shugo, powerful Kokujin (local samurai) and others.

Jugoinoge was conferred on all branches that came from the lineage of a prestigious family and had few enfeoffments, all fudai daimyo (a daimyo in hereditary vassal to the Tokugawa family), all tozama daimyo (nonhereditary feudal lord) having Kokudaka (assessed yield) under 100,000 Koku (approximately 18 million liters of crop yield) in their territory, and all hatamoto (direct retainers of the bakufu) of high rank in the Edo period. It was conferred mainly on daimyo (Japanese feudal lord), powerful hatamoto, gosanke (three privileged branches of Tokugawa Family), gosankyo (three branches of Tokugawa family, which was established by the eighth shogun Yoshimune TOKUGAWA), the Honda clan serving as Karo (chief retainer) of the Fukui Domain ruled by Tokugawa's relatives of the highest rank or the Kaga Domain, and the Kikkawa clan, a branch family of the Choshu clan, at the time when the Kikkawa clan was allowed to found the Iwakuni Domain. Although the court rank of Jugoi was conferred on the Honda clan from the Kaga Domain, the corresponding post was not given to it. Therefore, members of the clan were called 'Jugoi sama' or 'Jugoi dono' (Both terms mean literally "Mr. Jugoi.").

In and after the Meiji period

Jugoi had been automatically conferred on an eldest legitimate son of the peerage since the Meiji period. For this reason, an eldest legitimate son of the peerage was also referred to as Jugoi. This rank was also conferred on Lieutenant Colonels and others.

At present, it is to be conferred on the deceased as a mark of honor. It is conferred on the deceased who rendered distinguished service as chairperson of a prefectural assembly, head of a school, chief of police, fire chief, chief of a fire company or president of a company.

[Original Japanese]