Online ISSN : 2424-2616
Print ISSN : 0018-2478
ISSN-L : 0018-2478
The Base of Operations for The Kawashima Family During the Sengoku Period
Chisato Kanda
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1987 Volume 96 Issue 9 Pages 1445-1468,1557-


This paper concerns the Kawashima 革島 family which has been regarded in previous research as a Shoryoshu 小領主 (under-developed land proprietor), described as one of the organizers of Sengoku period ikki 一揆 (alliances for joint protest) which included jizamurai 地侍 (local magnates) and hyakusho 百姓 (free commoners). Shoryoshu are considered to have belonged neither perfectly to the bushi 武士 (warrior) classes nor completely to the common people, and therefore have been thought to have stood the "bushi" classes and the common people. In this article, the author tries to throw some light upon the conditions of the Kawashima family's attempt to accumulate, through purchase, various forms and scales of ownership over the lands scattered throughout the districts around its home region. This characteristic has been regarded as the main feature of shoryoshu in previous research. Here the author explains how the Kawashima family was able to protect its land ownership against tokusei ikki 徳政一揆 (an uprising by the people demanding return of land sold and dissolution of debts) and tokuseirei 徳政令 (an act by the Muromachi Bakufu 室町幕府 ordering the return of land sold and the dissolution of debts). To begin with, the author points out, through an analysis of Kawashima family held tochi baiken 土地売券 (land sale certificates), the fact that the land ownership of the family was protected by the Muromachi Bakufu, even during the promulgation of tokuseirei. Secondly, the soryo 惣領 (chief) of the family was a vassal of the Ise 伊勢 family, who occupied an important position in the Muromachi Bakufu government. One can easily see that this vassalage would be fairly convenient to the Kawashima family for assuring the protection of its land ownership by the Muromachi Bakufu. The author concludes, contrary to statements appearing in previous research, that the Kawashima family was not an under-developed land proprietor, but rather fully belonged to the "bushi" classes.

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© 1987 The Historical Society of Japan
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