Kitsuregawa clan

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  • Japanese: 喜連川家 (Kitsuregawa ke)

The Kitsuregawa clan were an Edo period daimyô family who traced their descent from the Ashikaga clan Koga kubô, or the Ashikaga shoguns.[1]

The family name was first established during the time of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, when Ashikaga Kunitomo, the grandson of Oyumi Kubô Ashikaga Yoshiaki, succeeded Ashikaga Yoshiuji as koga kubô. Hideyoshi transferred him to a domain at Kitsuregawa, in Shioya district, Shimotsuke province, and the lineage came to be known as the Kitsuregawa.

Kunitomo was married to Ashikaga Ujinohime in 1591, but died of illness in Aki province on his way to Kyushu to participate in Hideyoshi's invasions of Korea. Ujinohime was then encouraged by Hideyoshi to marry Kunitomo's younger brother Ashikaga Yoriuji, who later became known as Kitsuregawa Yoriuji. They had a son, Kitsuregawa Yoshichika.

In the Edo period, the Kitsuregawa were considered the direct descendants of the Ashikaga clan of the Kantô. They had a base kokudaka of only 5000 koku, but on account of their esteemed lineage were elevated to kôke[2], of shihon rank (Lower Junior Fourth Rank), with a kokudaka of 10,000 koku. On the second day of each year, as part of New Year's festivities, the Kitsuregawa were received in audience by the shogun alongside the kunimochi and jun-kunimochi daimyô, a particular exception given their station.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Yamamoto Hirofumi, Edo jidai - Shôgun bushi tachi no jitsuzô, Tôkyô shoseki (2008), 69.
  2. lit. "high families," the kôke were among the lowest-ranking daimyô, but were above non-daimyô, and served as masters of protocol and masters of ceremony for the shogunate.