Table of Contents
藤木久志、土一揆と城の戦国を行く、朝日新聞社、東京、2006 (Fujiki Hisashi, A journey through rural protests and castles of the Sengoku era, Asahi Shimbun, 2006)


藤木久志、土一揆と城の戦国を行く、朝日新聞社、東京、2006 (Fujiki Hisashi, A journey through rural protests and castles of the Sengoku era, Asahi Shimbun, 2006)

飢饉に強い門徒組織: - This stems from chapter two. The first point made by Prof.Fujiki is that currently the amount of research into the links between war and famine in the middle ages context is slight, despite the fact that the means to overcome famine was one of the principal methods of survival during the middle ages period. The source he first uses to illustrate this point is the `Honfukuji Atogaki` (本福寺跡書) . The passage related to the hardship of famine stems from this record written by Myōsei (明誓), a monk of the Shinshū Honfukuji temple located in Ōmi Katata. At the beginning of the sixteenth century, Myōsei`s father, Myōshū (明宗) had been excommunicated by Honganji three times, the third time proving fatal both for himself and 10 others of his family who all subsequently starved to death. He himself wrote about the miserable fate that his family had been subjected to (passage thereafter follows). By being excommunicated, his family had disintegrated, not knowing where to turn, and suffering from a lack of food. Some had died from the cold, others from starvation, whilst others had merely become separated from the rest and died on their own. (37-38)

For many years, the prevailing attitude towards this historical document was that it was an attempt to overemphasize the suffering of Honfukuji in order to gain sympathy and win a place back with Honganji, but recent study suggests that it was a means to convey the very brutal situation of life for ostracized temples. If a temple received a Gokanki (御勘気) from Honganji, it meant that they would not be spared from a myriad of miserable fates. They would have to sell what relics they had, and merely exist for the purpose of finding more food. Though they might be able to take some children as priests, the rest would have to be abandoned to the world, to meet whatever fate had in store for them. Myōshū carried on the record of the fate of the temple, stating that when driven to poverty, though one may become a priest, it was not study of the Buddha but mere concentration of survival that would occupy his time. Of course, for Honfukuji, which did not possess much land of its own for tilling, they worked tirelessly for Honganji. However occasionally they would meet with natural disaster, such as flooding, wind damage, drought, or rice blight, which would mean another フシユクノトシ 「不熟の年」, thus meaning that they would not be able to perform their temple duties, which meant that they would occasionally be excommunicated by Honganji. The calamities that afflicted their crops could then spread disease, for scrub typhus would then appear.(40)

Professions adept at surviving famine, and those that weren`t: As a result of the fate of his father, Myōsei decided to write for posterity a manual to aid the temple in times of famine (making up chapters 231-232 of the temple record), which constitute several different key points and which fully convey the suffering caused by famine, a record unlike any other in that region. The common theme to run through the record was that the first to suffer from the affects of famine were those who tilled to soil (the peasants in charge of rice fields). Others who would suffer during such times were those such as painters, furniture makers, thread and cloth merchants, and others responsible for more expensive goods. On the other hand, those who did not suffer much were barrel makers, metal smiths and ironmongers, all of whom could ride out a famine quite well as they repaired farming equipment and could also buy at cheap prices equipment sold by the destitute. Carpenters also were quite able to withstand the effects of famine, their services almost always being in demand.(42-43) These particular trades could also be counted on to see through a famine, as both goods and money came cheaply, thus for carpenters, work could thus begin in earnest as materials were easier to come by. In addition, those whose sold food stuffs, mochi, dango, and fruits were able to survive famines. Thus it appears that both to sell goods and support the temple enabled many to ride out a period of famine in a relevant state of good health.(43)

One can see from the records left by Myōsei that at the reading of the Nembutsu, a decision would be made on the election of the next Otō (御頭) to lead the organization of Honfukuji (this was the leader – the 頭屋 was the organization) (Chapter 186, note the consensus building that took place through the meeting). Again, the trades represented here are those of barrel makers, oil merchants, noodle makers, and ship builders, each of whom were part of the `executive` board of the Monto. Some examples shed further light on this. The ironmongery was a particularly strong source of employment during famine years, as were the metal smiths, tofu sellers and so forth, and thus they tended to be representatives of the Monto, for their trades were stable and functioned as a sort of `crisis management` group.(44)

This practice did not only exist among the executive group of Honfukuji. Honganji itself also shared this characteristic, for the 生命維持装置 of Honganji spoke of the Goryū 御流, which essentially meant that any believer facing hardship from famine or war would be met with peace and hospitality with which to survive the harsh times. For those suffering famine and hardship, Honganji and its affiliates offered a way in which to survive (the Japanese of which reads 御流ノ内へタチヨリ、身ヲ隠ス). A further investigation of whether similar sorts of assistance were provided at most Shinshū temples and organizations, in addition to an analysis of the organization of Monto within towns, would yield some interesting results. (45)

Thus the Tōya (頭屋), who compromised the executive board of the Monto and were least susceptible to famine, were the mainstay (or at least the most important section) of the Honfukuji Monto, as they were not of the farming class. Yet this does not give the full picture on the widespread phenomenon of famine during the middle ages, for there were other means by which crises were managed by the Monto.(45)

Control through Famine: The record left by Myōsei also indicates that those designated as ウトク (有徳) would have an important part to play during a period of famine. Essentially those known as Yutokujin or Bungenjin would invest wealth into enterprises that would help those suffering, and thus would be known as Yutokujin or Toku no aru hito. However, if one looks further into the records, the cause of famine itself might be discerned. The 長禄寛正記 (Chōrokukanshōki) states that Ashikaga Yoshimasa, in spite of a burgeoning famine, ordered the creation of the Hana no Gosho, and thus through extensive building brought further suffering to the people – it essentially outlines a flat-out criticism of Yoshimasa. Thus in a time of famine, those with wealth (the Yutokujin and Bungensha), would be able to obtain cheap labor and materials quite easily which meant that they would not only be able to create an ideal environment for themselves, the operations and measures involved in famine relief meant that they could further gather authority into their own hands and provide an important route for control of their territories. Hence they were willing to invest their money in relief efforts.(46) It is for these very reasons that the Yutokujin and the Bungensha, if matters did not go according to plan for the peasantry and if their suffering was not relieved, would be attacked by the Monto.(46-47)

The creation of ikki and the background of famine: Both the Jitsugoki {実悟記} and the Tōjikakochō [東寺過去帳] both reveal (and this has in part been explained by Carol Richmond) that in the third year of Eishō (1506) the upsurge in ikkō ikki came in response to a worsening famine. From early spring through to the end of autumn, from the Hokuriku region through to the Tokai and Kinai, the records speak of 「諸国土一キ(揆)発(おこ)」and 「国中一揆」which, according to Fujiki, indicate intensive activity on the part of the Ikkō shū. He quotes a passage from Kinryu Shizuka (金龍 静) who states that fighting occurred as part of an 「一国之一揆」that included all levels of society, not just those of the Monto, yet Prof.Kinryu concluded his remarks by saying that the reason for the high incidence of ikki throughout the Hokuriku came as a result of the embrace of ikkō ikki in that region. Prof.Fujiki then outlines 8 points drawn from the Tōjikakochō that illustrate the degree of distress suffered in the Hokuriku. The rise of ikkō ikki of course began in most of the Hokuriku, meaning from Echizen, Kaga, Noto, and Etchū, before spreading to Mino, Owari, Mikawa, and then into the Kinai, leaving behind many dead. The record itself states that disease, death from wounds, starvation, and infant mortality (夭死輩 ようしはい) played a part in ravaging many provinces, with other records pointing towards 刀死(戦死)、餓死(飢餓による死)、疫癘死(えきらいし、疫病による死)and 夭死(幼い者の死).(49)

Just how many died is difficult to discern, however as the records state that `many thousands` or `many hundreds of thousands` of people died, we can imagine that the mortality rate was quite high. Thus the precedent for the ikkō ikki of Eishō 3 was the phenomenon of starvation, disease, and untimely death. Other records give an even more direct account of the suffering. The account titled `Eikōji Nendaiki` (永光寺年代記) was written in Noto, which was at the center of the calamity in the Hokuriku, And for the first year of Eishō (1504) it states that there was `famine throughout the land` (天下飢饉), and for the following two years it goes on to state (天下飢饉、人民死、能登、越中土一揆也). In the third year the record states that `Nagao Shinshū (信州) Toshikage died in battle(討死)`. Thus from the outset of Eishō the situation had been bad and gradually grew worse, with many deaths recorded, the outbreak of 土一揆 in Noto and Etchū、and the death of the Nagao in conflict. The record of Eikōji, written by monks of the Sōtō sect of Zen thus preserves a valuable record of the disturbances.(49)

The record of the Tōjikakochō is of particular use when tracing the incidences of tsuchi ikki in conjunction with famine and disease. Yet there are others. The Sanfukuji Nendaichō (産福寺年代帳) of Kaga (conceived of in 1561) states that for the tsuchi ikki of Noto and Etchū, in the 3rd year of Eishō 「能登、越中百姓、侍退治」occurred. It goes on to state that in 上野(こうずけ)there was 「諸国麻疹流行」and in Kai(甲斐), though the harvest had been good in autumn, as a result of a particularly bad season the year before, many had starved during the 「春のツマリ」, being too poor and weakened to cultivate their fields properly.(50)

The calamitous fifteenth and sixteenth centuries: The records of natural disaster continue during the following two hundred year period, and cover most of the nation. In the 7th year of Meiō (明応)1498, a large earthquake struck most of the eastern provinces, which was followed in the 8th year by widespread bad harvests. From the first year of Bunkyū right through to the 3rd year (1501-1503), the record speaks of famine and calamity, and in the 3rd year of Eishō it remarks that `paralysis` struck the land. Thus these disasters had continued for ten years.(50) The record for Noto states that in the year before the ikki broke out, at Aizu in Mutsu province there had occurred `the largest famine in the nation, with mass starvation, and deaths of some 3,000 people`, in Musashino there had been `a great epidemic, with tens of thousands left dead, great starvation, and the desertion of many villages`. Indeed such numbers had died that the Sanmon of Enryakuji had performed a rite of expulsion of evil (施餓鬼 せがき).(50)

The Hokuriku ikki of Eishō 3 thus occurred during the harshest period between the planting during spring and harvesting in autumn (when food reserves had all but been exhausted and could only be purchased before the next harvest began). The records of various temples indicate this, thus leading to the conclusion that the tsuchi ikki (which, to Fujiki, were mostly peasant led) and epidemics (or serious famine) were inextricably linked.(50)

The Tokusei of Tokugawa Ieyasu: When detailing the episodes of ikkō ikki, one that particularly stands out is that which occurred in Mikawa in the 6th year of Eiroku (1563), and which came to a conclusion in the following year as a result of an unusual tokusei issued by Tokugawa Ieyasu. Fujiki then follows this up with three edicts drawn from Tokugawa Ieyasu. What they show is that the lands that had been borrowed in perpetuity from the ikki and the repayment in rice and funds loaned from the Ikkō shū had become a burden for the Tokugawa household, and even after conflict had ended the problem still remained. Thus to alleviate this, Ieyasu proposed that rice and money borrowed from among enemy temples would not be returned, thus removing this burden, and effectively calling a tokusei for himself (even though the region was at peace). Article 3 in particular states that `On no account will returns be made (of produce/funds) borrowed during last year`s ikki`, a statement that was open to very broad interpretation and could be applied across a wide context. Moreover, this strategy of abolition of debt was carried out from the first year of Tenbun across all of the Imagawa territories.(51-52)

The record written by the Tokugawa regarding the Mikawa ikki (Sanshū Ikkōshū Ranki – 参州(三河)一向宗乱記) states that the temples of Honganji in the area, Noderamura no Honshōji, Sazaki (佐崎)mura no Jōeiji, Harizakimura no Shōmanji, and Tsuchiryo (Doro) mura no Honshūji all possessed abundant land. In fact, it emphasizes this point in the introduction to the record, and then later goes on to describe the difficulties faced by the Tokugawa household in relation to their fortunes, and thus comes up with an unusual reason for the ikki.(52)

As Ieyasu was out falconing from Okazaki during autumn of the 6th year of Eiroku (noted for its bad harvest), he came across the particularly wealthy Ikkō shū temple of Sasaki(佐々木) Jōeiji, whereupon he decided to make a pact whereby `returns would be made when the harvest was abundant`, and then asked for rice as a loan until such a time. As the temple refused this request, the Tokugawa army decided to take by force the rice seedlings of the temple, which raised the ire of the Ikkō shū, thus leading to the ikki – or so the record states. Another theory puts it that `the rice that had been placed before the gates of Sasaki Jōeiji to dry had been `scattered and ruined` by the troops of the Tokugawa, which drove the Ikkō into a fury and thus led to the ikki`.(52)

Hence if we look at the relationship between the period of Eiroku 5 to 7 (1562-64), the record that illuminates the wealth of the temples and contrasts it to the poor state of the Tokugawa army and the violence committed by that army (the borrowing of rice and seizure of seedlings from the Ikkō shū during a bad harvest), the raising of an ikkō ikki in Mikawa (meaning battle between the Ikkō shū and the Tokugawa) and the tokusei edict put in place by Ieyasu both during and after the conflict, each is inextricably linked to the other. According to the natural disaster data available to Fujiki, from Eiroku 4 to 5 there were `epidemics` (Kaga), a `great epidemic` (Noto), `the loss of the entire harvest` (Kai). In the 6th year of Eiroku, records state that `the world was unspeakably bad` (Kai), with `great floods` (Hitachi).(53)

Fujiki does admit that one cannot explain all wars and ikki as caused by famine, but if one does look for links between the two, then one arrives at the current debate. An examination of the records for the ikki of Eisei, the Mikawa ikki, and the weather and natural disaster records for the period all point at bad harvests being the principal cause of calamity. Thus there is room for a re-examination of the causes of the Ikkō ikki.(53)

The formation of an Ikkō army: The next section looks at the formation of the Ikkō army, and what troops it deployed in the field. The Kanchiron {官地論}, which details the Kaga Ikkō ikki of the 2nd year of Chōryō, states that in addition to `head priests, 国衆 (meaning those of higher civil rank), and peasants` there were other `miscellaneous troops, of numbers too many to count` and that `leading their comrades, and other young groups, they would amass, on occasion, over 40,000 troops (騎)`. From this we can draw a conclusion that the ikki forces employed by the Ikkō shū included not only believers, but numerous miscellaneous troops who sought out their fortune on the battlefield (this being the primary means of wealth creation for the poor of the middle ages period). (54)

The `Sanshū (Mikawa) Ikkōshū Ranki` states that the Ikkō shū `rounded up the rōnin (牢人) of the surrounding region, and put them to work with malicious intent`, and `via talking with `violent` (不和) gokenin, the rōnin were enticed and assembled` as well as `the ikki…seemed only to consist of lower priests and rōnin, with barely a weapon on them`. The insistence here then is that the ikki primarily was made up of vagrant warriors (牢人), who had been gathered together to act as miscellaneous soldiers. Although we can see through this depiction that the intention of the record was to emphasize the poor image of the ikki as reliant on the welfare of the Ikkō shū, this is not all. We will recall the earlier comment about `those of this world, who have lost all that they have, may enter into the Goryū, and there may hide (place) themselves`, in other words the unifying nature of the Honganji to those unsettled in the world must have had some effect on the formation of the ikki forces. It is possible to see in these 牢人 as persons who, having little else to lose and living out a meager existence, would use the Ikkō shū group as a form of refugee relief.(54-55) (one question – did the Goryū exist as a concept from the very outset of the practices of Honganji, or was it developed later? If it existed from the outset, it had unintended consequences, however if it was introduced at a later date (ie, during either the fifteenth or sixteenth centuries), it`s use marks a significant event in the practices of the Honganji sect and the dramatic rise in the number of followers).

The record provided by the Honfukuji Atogaki also makes mention of `ハヤキ者(もの)` and `透波(すっぱ)ノ手柄師(てがらし)`, and `曲者(くせもの) – in other words, Monto members possessing some fairly skilled abilities (Chapter 199). In the first month of the 6th year of Kanshō (1465), the Sanmon (monks of the Enryakuji Nishitōin temples), consisting of `アク僧百五十人バカリ`, in addition to `御近所ノ悪党等` (those Inuji nin (犬神人) of Higashiyama)モ、オリヲエテ人数ニクハハリ` (from the Honfukuji Yuraiki) attacked Otani Honganji in Higashiyama, and then made off with many of the precious artifacts of the temple (Chapter 198). Seeing that the long sword that had belonged to Junnyo of Honganji had been stolen, a certain Kitsune Gorotarō of the Akano Monto of Noshū gun in Ōmi, who was known as a `hayaki mono`, took off after them and managed to retrieve the article (Chapter 199) (55)

These `hayaki mono` , according to the Ketsujōshi Shinhatto (結城氏新法度 – 下総 ranked warriors) were `those persons unaffiliated with akutō, adept at running, and of good purpose (on the straight and narrow – 一筋)` (Article 27). The Ueda family of Matsuyama castle in Musashi employed them as `night messengers (or watchmen), those persons able to steal information in the night`, whereas Uesugi Kenshin used them as messengers for their `adept methods of utilizing the night`. In sum, we can suppose that these `hayaki mono` were miscellaneous troops with akutō-esque skills, and in temple armies such as those of Honganji, the uses for troops such as these would have been many, and thus many would have been employed.(55)

On the other hand, the Monto of Honfukuji, which received notice that Otani had been attacked and rushed to try to assist, were concentrated around `腹巻武者八十人以上` and `ソノ勢弐百余人` which meant that over half of the Honfukuji force was made up of `miscellaneous troops` (雑兵). However, for the people of Kyoto who went to see the fight unfold, what struck them were the highly valuable pieces of armor that the warriors of the Monto were wearing, for they remarked `見事(ミゴト)ノ佩刀(ハキモノ)ナリト、ゲジ~アハセヲシテ、仕崩(シクツ)サン`. In fact, the townspeople of Kyoto were probably not so much interested in watching the spectacle than in appropriating what they could from the battlefield. In ikki that occurred between villages, there emerged the practice of `落人狩り`(おちうどがり), or robbing the dead. What occurred here with the townspeople was one aspect of that.(56)

The Monto members who witnessed this `カタ、イヲケノ尉(せう)` were outraged by the actions of the townspeople, and said `チツトモ町(マチノ)ヤツ原(ハラ)、緩怠致(クワンタイイタ)サバ、続松(タイマツ)ヲ手二~モテ、町々へ火ヲカケ焼崩(ヤキクツシ)` in a loud, threatening manner (the meaning of which was – if any one of the townspeople dared to touch a member of the Monto, they would set fire to bundles of pine wood and burn down the streets of the capital). The イヲケノ慰(じょう)(尉)mentioned above were the Kosan (古参) Monto of Honfukuji, comprising the barrel makers. Chapter 199 of the Honfukuji Atogaki goes on to state that `コノ慰(せう)、スマイノギヤウジ、スツパ(透波)ノテガラシ(手柄師), 軍(イクサ)二得意(コ、ロイ)` and that `カノ慰クセモノナル間、京ノ者モ少々(せうせう)ハ見知者(ミシリモノ)モアリ`. The `スマイノギヤウジ` (相撲の行司) mentioned above were men who on occasion performed in shrines, who would engage in rough contests of their fighting ability even without a dohyō, who welcomed the opportunity for a fierce fight, a practice that was eventually banned. The gyōji was thus a leader of such men, each of whom was a highly developed wrestler.(56)

The すっぱ(Suppa, 透波)were persons hired for ambushes and robberies by warriors, and would otherwise be engaged in stealth operations (忍び) or night attacks (according to the 武家名目抄 Bukemyōmokushō – list of professions). The テガラシ(手柄師)and 軍二得意 meant that they were adept at acquiring arms and armor, and knew their tactics – indeed, they were practitioners of military arts (from the バレト写本) . They had `knowledge of kendo or other (martial arts), and were very adept in the use of them` (from the Nihon Kokugo Daijiten). Thus this force that had been assembled by Honfukuji consisted of expert sumo wrestlers whose own activities had been banned, experts in stealth and evasion, men ready for battle and constantly on the search for employment in war, and men who were known to the people of Kyoto – in other words, 曲者 (kyokumono), drifters, or swords for hire.(56-57)

(This record alone is of interest, for in the source by Prof.Ishida he states that the Monto of Honfukuji often had to fight off the advances of jizamurai who coveted the rights to the lands and lordship over the people that the temple administered. Yet in the detail given here, Honfukuji and its Monto leadership appear to have derived their wealth from trading and manufacturing, and thus may have been able to obtain their own defenders from among the akutō through payment– this can lead to one form of speculation. That is – that jizamurai were a part of the community, recognized as being warriors but prone to act according to their own interests. They could be Monto leaders, but in as much as this provided them with a force to back up their ambitions. Akutō, on the other hand, may have functioned as auxiliaries for the Monto. They may not have belonged to the community (for a village could consist of members and non-members), but could be bought in order to provide further strength to a Monto. They were, in essence, a type of mercenary, making their living out of the civil strife afflicting society. There also remains the possibility that akutō consisted of jizamurai who had been forced out of their community and into a life of vagrancy. It might be worthwhile trying to look at sources for late Muromachi akutō and the years in which they are mentioned, for an upsurge in records for akutō may coincide with years of famine and hardship (as they may do for tsuchi ikki and ikkō ikki). As Prof Kanda has mentioned that akutō became synonymous with tsuchi ikki, it is possible that they participated in ikki in order to provide another means to acquire wealth through use of force, or some sort of relief from hardship. Their presence also dramatically increased the potency of an ikki, for they were professional warriors. They may not have led the Monto, but they could make it far more destructive, and the influence of religion and the sanctity provided by the Ikkō shū provided them with a source of employment and probably a sense of unity – although history shows that the Monto of various regions did not always act in accordance with Honganji`s wishes, they were unified according to the practices of the sect.

The ikki battlefield and seizure of goods: This Monto, being populated with `スマイノギョウジ、スッパのテガラシ、と軍二得意` in addition to the `hayaki mono`, resembles that of the akutō of the middle ages period, and by remembering the Honganji edict about harbouring all who should seek its help, we now have a description of wandering soldiers who have banded together (precisely in the same manner as an ashigaru taishō etc). The areas in which the ikkō ikki operated were thus also subject to the same amount of `looting` as would occur in common conflicts. In the 3rd month of the second year of Ōnin (1468), during a dispute with the Sanmon known as the Katata Ōzeme (堅田大責) , the Monto of Katata decided upon a policy of resistance that stated `ワレモ~ト、海ノ中二、オキニユカナントヲカキテ、ヨロツサイホウ、アシヨワヲ、オキタリケル` (Honfukuji Yuraiki). Knowing that war would mean the seizure of their goods, the Monto planned to have their wealth and the `weaker members – アシヨワヲ` (meaning the elderly, women, and children) evacuated on rafts into the middle of Lake Biwa. This in part goes back to Myosei`s instructions on the `safekeeping of goods` drawn from his unfortunate experiences and which he is at pains to emphasize in his writings. It wasn`t just a means to prevent the loss of the 宝法物(ほうほうぶつ) received from Honganji, but also a method of preparing for the inevitable looting and abductions that would accompany the outbreak of conflict.(57-58)

Oda Nobunaga and the suppression of the ikki: In the eighth month of the 3rd year of Tenshō, Oda Nobunaga struck out on a determined campaign to eliminate the threat posed to him by the Echizen ikkō ikki, and the records left relating to preparations just before he entered the area of Ichinotani spread light on what he expected his forces to do (thereafter follows the different orders). This war had come about as a result of Nobunaga`s defeat of the Asakura of Echizen, for now power had shifted to the `ikki` under the control of Honganji, who were aiming to further spread their influence into former Oda territories and thus capture them for themselves. So in a sense the campaign of Oda was one of retribution, and orders 1 through to 4 constitute the core part of the orders for the suppression of the ikki.(58-59)

Firstly, those men and women chased by the army into the mountains and who constituted the local ikki forces were to be hunted down and eliminated. Secondly, any persons taken alive were to be brought to the Oda camp. Based on the estimate of the numbers of ikki members killed by the armies of the Oda, an official document (公式の届出) put the total at more than 12,250. In addition, those persons captured by the armies of the Oda but not reported to the main Oda camp and subsequently taken as booty were said to be `too many to count`, meaning that those persons taken as slaves and those members of the ikki that were killed, when the numbers are put together, were probably in the range of 30,000 to 40,000.(59)

At the time this occurred, there was a witness in the Oda camp by the name of Tsunenori of the Daijōin temple of Yamato province, who wrote in his diary that `in the hunting in the mountains, members of the ikki were either killed or captured, and so as to prove their numbers, the noses of the slain were to be cut off and returned to the camp. For the two hundred or so brought back to the camp alive, they were subsequently beheaded in the fields to the west of the camp`. It is a record that retains the tremendous slaughter carried out by the forces of the Oda and of the practice of taking body parts (in this case, noses) as evidence.(59)

Yet when one looks through the evidence for the suppression of the ikki, it may be possible that as in point no.2 Oda Nobunaga`s forces hunted the ikki members through the mountains and killed over 10,000 of them. Yet other daimyo in the army (as in points 3 and 4) had been able to capture a fair number alive and these had been secretly spirited back to the home provinces of the warriors, and were 2 to 3 times the number of those killed. In sum, the number of those killed under orders from Nobunaga were less than those captured alive as chattel, which meant that the number of people in the Owari armies who had taken slaves for themselves were quite substantial, thus meaning at that points 3 speaks of a reduction in the scale of the great slaughter, as opposed to the record under point 2.(60)

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© Greg Pampling. This page was modified in December 2011