Shuyoshi (主鷹司)

Shuyoshi (Falcons Office) refers to an institution that belonged to Hyobusho (Ministry of Military) in the Ritsuryo system (a system of centralized government based on the ritsuryo code). It was called Takatsukasa or Takanotsukasa in a Japanese way.

Official duties

Shuyoshi, also called hoyoshi, raised and trained falcons and hunting dogs, and had complete control over hunting such as falconry and so on. It was lowest in rank among the shi (Offices), and for Shitokan (four classifications of bureaucrats' ranks), only Kami (Director) and Sakan (Secretary) were established. Actually, Takako of Shinabe (technicians in offices) was in charge of raising falcons.

Due to the Buddhist thought of 'ahimsa,' Shuyoshi was abolished in 721, and in a period from 764 to 769 under Dokyo's government, and then Hojoshi (literally, office of returning animals to nature) was established. Shuyoshi was revived in the Enryaku era, but it was abolished practically because nobody came to be appointed as government posts of Shuyoshi from 861 due to part of downsizing measures. The rearing of falcons was taken over by Takagai (hawker) of Kurododokoro (the Chamberlain's Office).


Kami (Jurokui [Junior Sixth Rank]): One
Reishi (Shohatsuinoge [Lesser Initial Rank, Lower Grade]): One

Takako: 17 houses
Shibu (low rank bureaucrats): Six
Jikicho (factotum): One
Shisho (a person doing miscellaneous duties around documents): Two (from the year 796)