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A History of the Japanese People by F. Brinkley

The reply sent by Uesugi was defiant



The realm of Japan was then held by 214 feudatories, each having an annual income of at least 10,000 koku (omitting minor landowners). These 214 estates yielded to their holders a total income of nearly nineteen million koku, and of that aggregate the domains of the five noblemen forming the Board of Senior Statesmen constituted one-third. Tokugawa Ieyasu was the wealthiest. His domains in the eight provinces forming the Kwanto yielded an income of 2,557,000 koku. Next on the list came Mori Terumoto with 2,205,000 koku, and Uesugi Kagekatsu with 1,200,000 koku. The latter two were partisans of Ishida. But direct communication between their forces was difficult, for while the Mori domains covered the nine provinces on the extreme west of the main island, Uesugi's lay on the north of the Kwanto, whence they stretched to the shore of the Japan Sea. Fourth and fifth on the Board of Senior Statesmen were Maeda Toshiiye, whose fief (835,000 koku) occupied Kaga and Etchu; and Ukita Hideiye (574,000 koku), whose castle stood at Oka-yama, in Bizen. All these, except Maeda embraced the anti-Tokugawa cause of Ishida Katsushige, and it thus becomes easy to understand the desire of Ishida to win over Maeda Toshinaga, son of Toshiiye, to his camp. On the side of Ieyasu's foes were also marshalled Shimazu Yoshihisa, feudal chief of Satsuma (700,000 koku); Satake Yoshinobu of Hitachi province (545,700

koku); Konishi Yukinaga in Higo (200,000 koku), who was counted one of the greatest captains of the era, and, nominally, Kohayakawa Hideaki in Chikuzen (522,500 koku). With Ieyasu were the powerful daimyo: Date Masamune of Sendai (580,000 koku); Kato Kiyomasa of Kumamoto (250,000 koku); Hosokawa Tadaoki of Tango (230,000 koku); Ikeda Terumasa of Mikawa (152,000 koku), and Kuroda Nagamasa of Chikuzen (250,000 koku). This analysis omits minor names.


The plan of campaign formed by Ishida and his confederates was that Uesugi and Satake should attack the Kwanto from the north and the east simultaneously, while Mori and Ukita should move against Fushimi and occupy Kyoto. In May, 1600, Ieyasu went through the form of requiring Uesugi to repair to Kyoto and explain his obviously disaffected preparations. The reply sent by Uesugi was defiant. Therefore, the Tokugawa chief proceeded to mobilize his own and his allies' forces. He seems to have clearly foreseen that if he himself moved eastward to Yedo, Momo-yama would be assaulted in his absence. But it being necessary to simulate trust in Mori and Ukita, then nominally his supporters, he placed in Momo-yama Castle a garrison of only two thousand men under his old and staunch friend, Torii Mototada. Ieyasu planned that Uesugi should be attacked simultaneously from five directions; namely from Sendai by Date; from Kaga by Maeda; from Dewa by Mogami; from Echigo by Hori, and from Hitachi by Satake. But among these five armies that of Satake declared for Ishida, while those of Maeda and Hori were constrained to adopt a defensive attitude by the menace of hostile barons in their vicinity, and thus it fell out that Date and Mogami alone operated effectively in the cause of Ieyasu.

The Tokugawa chief himself lost no time in putting his troops in motion for Yedo, where, at the head of some sixty thousand men, he arrived in August, 1600, his second in command being his third son, Hidetada. Thence he pushed rapidly northward with the intention of attacking Uesugi. But at Oyama in Shimotsuke news reached him that Ishida and his partisans had drawn the sword in the west, and had seized Osaka, together with the wives and families of several of the captains who were with Ieyasu's army. A council was immediately held and these captains were given the option of continuing to serve under Ieyasu or retiring to join the western army and thus ensuring the safety of their own families. They chose the former, and the council further decided that, leaving Date and Mogami to deal with Uesugi and Satake, and posting for the same purpose at Utsunomiya, Hideyasu, second son of Ieyasu, the main army should countermarch to meet the western forces at some point remote from Yedo.

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