Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado

Emperor of Japan
Reign August 21, 1464 – October 21, 1500
Predecessor Go-Hanazono
Successor Go-Kashiwabara
Born July 3, 1442
Died October 21, 1500 (aged 58)
Burial Fukakusa no kita no Misasagi (Kyoto)

Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado (後土御門天皇 Go-tsuchimikado-tennō) (July 3, 1442 – October 21, 1500) was the 103rd emperor of Japan,[1] according to the traditional order of succession. His reign spanned the years from 1464 through 1500.[2]

This 15th-century sovereign was named after the 12th-century Emperor Tsuchimikado and go- (後), translates literally as "later;" and thus, he could be called the "Later Emperor Tsuchimikado", or, in some older sources, may be identified as "Emperor Tsuchimikado, the second," or as "Emperor Tsuchimikado II."


Before his ascension to the Chrysanthemum Throne, his personal name (his imina) was Fusahito-shinnō (成仁親王).[3]

He was the eldest son of Emperor Go-Hanazono. His mother was Ōinomikado (Fujiwara) Nobuko (大炊御門(藤原)信子), daughter of Fujiwara Takanaga (藤原高長)

Events of Go-Tsuchimikado's life

Shortly after his enthronement, the Ōnin War took place. Temples, shrines, and mansions of court nobles, among others, were burned to the ground.[5] The Imperial Court's finances dried up, and the Court declined. The Emperor supported Yoshida Family's policy of establishing a new kind of State Shinto which could add social and political cohesion in the country devastated by civil war.

Until former-emperor Go-Komatsu died in 1433, Go-Hanazono held the title of formal head of the Daïri, the real power in the court was wielded by his uncle, who continued a practice known as cloistered rule. After this, Go-Hanazono enjoyed 30 years of direct imperial rule, until his abdication; and then the conventional pattern of indirect government by cloistered emperors was again resumed. The extended duration of Go-Tsuchimikado's reign—lasting thirty-six years, two months—is the longest of any sovereign in the historical period prior to Emperor Meiji.

After the end of the War, there was little enthusiasm for reviving the Imperial Court's ancient ceremonies. On October 21, 1500, the Emperor died. His successor Go-Kashiwabara lacked the funds to pay for the funeral ceremony, and the deceased emperor's body lay in a palace storeroom for over a month before a donation was made to the court, and the funeral could be observed.

Go-Tuschimikado is enshrined with other emperors at the imperial tomb called Fukakusa no kita no misasagi (深草北陵) in Fushimi-ku, Kyoto.[6]


Kugyō (公卿) is a collective term for the very few most powerful men attached to the court of the Emperor of Japan in pre-Meiji eras. Even during those years in which the court's actual influence outside the palace walls was minimal, the hierarchic organization persisted.

In general, this elite group included only three to four men at a time. These were hereditary courtiers whose experience and background would have brought them to the pinnacle of a life's career. During Go-Tsuchimikado's reign, this apex of the Daijō-kan included:

Eras of Go-Tsuchimikado's reign

The years of Go-Tsuchimikado's reign are more specifically identified by more than one era name or nengō.[3]


Japanese Imperial kamon — a stylized chrysanthemum blossom
  1. Imperial Household Agency (Kunaichō): 後土御門天皇 (103); retrieved 2013-8-28.
  2. Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, pp. 352–364.
  3. 1 2 Titsingh, p. 352.
  4. Titsingh, p. 351.
  5. Sansom, George (1961). A History of Japan, 1334-1615. Stanford University Press. p. 227. ISBN 0804705259.
  6. Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial House of Japan, p. 423.


See also

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Emperor Go-Hanazono
Emperor of Japan:

Succeeded by
Emperor Go-Kashiwabara
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