Tanegashima Tokitaka

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Tokitada was the son of Tanegashima Satotoki. He was the official head of the Tanegashima when he received the first Europeans in 1543 and arranged for their firearms to be studied and copied (for this reason arquebuses were known for a time as 'Tanegashima'). In fact, Tokitada’s smith was unable to reproduce a working arquebus for almost a year as he couldn’t effectively block up one end of the barrel to contain the force of the explosion of gunpowder. Another Portuguese vessel happened to call on Tanegashima and a blacksmith who was with the crew explained the idea of the stopper screw; until that point the screw was unknown to the Japanese. Like his father, Tokitada assisted Shimazu Takahisa in his efforts to subdue Ôsumi province. One of his daughters eventually became Shimazu Yoshihisa’s second wife.