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A History of the Japanese People by F. Brinkley

He decided to retire to his castle of Kitano sho


the following day, the facts were communicated to Hideyoshi, at Ogaki, distant about thirty miles from Shizugatake, who immediately appreciated the opportunity thus furnished. He set out at the head of his reserves, and in less than twenty-four hours his men crossed swords with Morimasa's force. The result was the practical extermination of the latter, including three thousand men under Katsuiye's adopted son, Gonroku. The latter had been sent to insist strenuously on Morimasa's retreat, but learning that Morimasa had determined to die fighting, Gonroku announced a similar intention on his own part. This incident was characteristic of samurai canons. Hideyoshi's victory cost the enemy five thousand men, and demoralized Katsuiye's army so completely that he subsequently found himself able to muster a total force of three thousand only. Nothing remained but flight, and in order to withdraw from the field, Katsuiye was obliged to allow his chief retainer, Menju Shosuke, to impersonate him, a feat which, of course, cost Shosuke's life.

Katsuiye's end is one of the most dramatic incidents in Japanese history. He decided to retire to his castle of Kitano-sho, and, on the way thither, he visited his old friend, Maeda Toshiiye, at the latter's castle of Fuchu, in Echizen. Thanking Toshiiye for all the assistance he had rendered, and urging him to cultivate friendship with Hideyoshi, he obtained a remount from Toshiiye's stable, and, followed by about

a hundred samurai, pushed on to Kitano-sho. Arrived there, he sent away all who might be suspected of sympathizing with Hideyoshi, and would also have sent away his wife and her three daughters. This lady was a sister of Nobunaga. She had been given, as already stated, to Asai Nagamasa, and to him she bore three children. But after Nagamasa's destruction she was married to Katsuiye, and was living at the latter's castle of Kitano-sho when the above incidents occurred. She declined to entertain the idea of leaving the castle, declaring that, as a samurai's daughter, she should have shared her first husband's fate, and that nothing would induce her to repeat that error. Her three daughters were accordingly sent away, and she herself joined in the night-long feast which Katsuiye and his principal retainers held while Hideyoshi's forces were marching to the attack. When the sun rose, the whole party, including the ladies, committed suicide, having first set fire to the castle.


One of the three daughters of Asai Nagamasa afterwards became the concubine of Hideyoshi and bore to him a son, Hideyori, who, by her advice, subsequently acted in defiance of Ieyasu, thus involving the fall of the house of Hideyoshi and unconsciously avenging the fate of Nobunaga.


Nobunaga's son, Nobutaka, who had been allied with Katsuiye, escaped, at first, to Owari on the latter's downfall, but ultimately followed Katsuiye's example by committing suicide. As for Samboshi, Nobunaga's grandson and nominal heir, he attained his majority at this time, but proving to be a man of marked incompetence, the eminent position for which he had been destined was withheld. He took the name of Oda Hidenobu, and with an income of three hundred thousand koku settled down contentedly as Hideyoshi's vassal.

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