World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Nene (aristocrat)

 

Nene (aristocrat)

Kōdai-in (Nene) in nun's robe

Nene (ねね, 1546-1624), also known as One (おね) or Nemoji or Kōdai-in, was the childhood name of Sugaihara Yasuko. She was the principal samurai wife of Toyotomi Hideyoshi.[1] She is also known by the title of "Kita no mandokoro".

Contents

  • Early life 1
  • Hideyoshi's wife 2
  • Letter to lady Nene from Oda Nobunaga 3
  • Hideyoshi's widow 4
  • Legacy 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • Further reading 8

Early life

She was born in about 1546. She was the daughter of Sugihara Sadatoshi.

Hideyoshi's wife

In about 1561, she married Toyotomi Hideyoshi, a man who would later become one of the three great unifiers of Japan, although at the time of their marriage he had yet to gain much fame. Nene was his principal wife and also one of his favorite wives.

In 1585, after Hideyoshi was appointed to the post of Kampaku, Nene took on the title of "Kita no mandokoro", by which she is most commonly known by in English.

As the wife of Hideyoshi, Nene is most famous for being one of his closest aides and confidantes. The daughter of a samurai, she had many familial connections that netted Hideyoshi several retainers. Among these retainers were Sugihara Ietsugu (Nene's uncle), Kinoshita Iesada (Nene's brother), Kobayakawa Hideaki (Nene's nephew) and Asano Nagamasa (Nene's brother-in-law). The last of these characters would serve as an important official in Hideyoshi's later administration.

Nene was known to have been an intelligent woman who, at times, advised Hideyoshi on matters of governance by sending him letters. When Hideyoshi repealed the tax exemptions he had granted to the residents living in his headquarters at Nagahama, Nene appealed to him to reinstate the exemptions, and he did. It is also recorded that Hideyoshi frequently wrote letters to Nene to tell her about how his campaigns were going. Hideyoshi did this after his invasion of Sassa Narimasa's territory in Japan's Hokuriku region and after his campaign against the Shimazu clan.

When Hideyoshi unified Japan, Nene often went with him to attend parties. Nene was courteous and respectful to her guests on every occasion. When Emperor Go-Yozei visited Hideyoshi's mansion with his entourage in 1588, Nene freely distributed a plethora of gifts to Hideyoshi's visitors. Nene worried about Hideyoshi often when he was on his deathbed. Eventually, as Hideyoshi was on his last throes, she even petitioned the Imperial Court to sponsor a sacred dance ritual to pray for and expedite Hideyoshi's recovery.

Though adored, Nene often found herself competing with other women for Hideyoshi's attention. In a letter to Nene, Oda Nobunaga also noted that Hideyoshi was somewhat dissatisfied with Nene. Hideyoshi took up several concubines.

Nene did not bear any children.[1]

Letter to lady Nene from Oda Nobunaga

...It has been quite sometime since I last saw you, but your beauty grows day by day. Tokichiro (Hideyoshi) complains about you constantly and it is outrageous. While that "bald rat" (Hideyoshi) flusters to find another good woman, you remain lofty and elegant. Do not be envious. Show Hideyoshi this letter...

Hideyoshi's widow

After Hideyoshi died in 1598, Nene became a nun, taking the name Kōdai-in 高台院 and establishing a Buddhist temple, Kōdai-ji, in Kyoto, to which she moved. It became the burial area for her husband, his mother, and later Toyotomi Hideyori. During the contest between Toyotomi Hideyori and Tokugawa Ieyasu for supremacy, Nene took the side of Ieyasu. There is also a rumor that Toshiie Maeda had a crush on Nene before she was married to Hideyoshi. After her death in 1624 she was posthumously given the name of Hikari no Tenshi or "Angel of Light" and entombed at the Hikari no Shrine in Kyoto.[2]

Legacy

The life of this prominent resident of Kyoto is still commemorated in a short street which bears her name. The Path of Nene (ねねの道 Nene-no-Michi) remains lined with structures built in traditional Kyoto style. Nene-no-Michi is located in Higashiyama Ward in eastern Kyoto near Kōdai-ji, Maruyama Park and Yasaka Shrine.[3]

See also

People of the Sengoku period in popular culture.

References

  1. ^ a b Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Matsudaira Ietada" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 702.
  2. ^ Nenzi, Laura. (2008). Excursions in Identity: Travel and the Intersection of Place, Gender, and Status in Edo Japan, p. 89.
  3. ^ Rowthorn, Chris. (2005). p. 95;Kyoto: City Guide, JapanVisitors: Nene-no-Michi. Temple/Kodaiji

Further reading

  • Berry, Mary Elizabeth. (1982). Hideyoshi. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. 10-ISBN 0-674-39025-3; 13-ISBN 978-0-674-39025-6
  • Nenz Detto Nenzi, Laura. (2008). Excursions in Identity: Travel and the Intersection of Place, Gender, and Status in Edo Japan. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press. 10-ISBN 0-8248-3117-9; 13-ISBN 978-0-8248-3117-2
  • Rowthorn, Chris. (2005). Kyoto: City Guide. Melbourne: Lonely Planet. 10-ISBN 1-74104-085-X; 13-ISBN 978-1-74104-085-2 OCLC: 224361206
  • Yoshikawa, Eiji. (1992). Taiko: An Epic Novel of War and Glory in Feudal Japan. Tokyo: Kodansha International. 10-ISBN 4-7700-1570-4; 13-ISBN 978-4-7700-1570-9 (cloth)
    • _________. (2000). Taiko: An Epic Novel of War and Glory in Feudal Japan. Tokyo: Kodansha International. 10-ISBN 4-7700-2609-9; 13-ISBN 978-4-7700-2609-5 (cloth)
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.