Saisho Atsushi (税所篤)

Atsushi SAISHO (December 22, 1827-June 21, 1910) was a Japanese samurai warrior and a bureaucrat.
He was a viscount
His common name was Kizaemon or Chozo. His pseudonym was Gansha.


He was born as the second son of Atsumichi SAISHO, a feudal retainer of Satsuma. When he was young, he learned at Atsutane HIRATA, a scholar of Japanese classical literature, and was recognized by Nariakira SHIMAZU, the lord of Satsuma Domain and appointed a county accounting officer. He joined Seichugumi Organization, a reform group, and deepened relationship with Takamori SAIGO, Toshimichi OKUBO, Kosuke YOSHII and others. After Kimmon no Hen (Conspiracy of Kinmon), he was active as Saigo's right hand. In the First conquest of Choshu he dealt with the transaction in the surrender of Choshu Domain. In Boshin Civil War he was engaged in the financial transactions of New government including army's military expenditure.

In the new government he served various positions such as internal office judge and the governor of Kawachi, Hyogo, Nara and Sakai Prefectures. At the Seinan War he was not accused of a crime because he had not been involved in the war, having been involved in the secretary work of the Imperial visit to Nara and proposal of construction of Yoshino no miya Shrine.

He took in charge of classification of artifacts in Shoso-in gyobutsu (Shoso-in's Imperial Property) because he was good at appraising antiquities. Later he served the Guji (chief of those who serves shrine, controls festivals and general affairs) of Kirishima-jingu Shrine and a Privy Councilor. With the merits at the Meiji Restoration, he was given the position of viscount. He died in 1910. His age at death was 84.


He cared for Saigo who had committed suicide by drowning with Gessho and miraculously survived. In 1862 he and Okubo petitioned Hisamitsu SHIMAZU for the release and return of Saigo who had been exiled to Amami-oshima Island to the domain.

He tried to cut down the pine trees in Hamadera-koen Park and develop the land. However, he dropped the plan in the face of the Okubo's opposing tanka (a Japanese poem) to his plan.

He had three children: Atsuhito, Atsumi and Nami IWASA. In addition, Atsuhito's second daughter Sawa married Hayakuma OKUBO, the sixth son of Toshimichi OKUBO.

Jogan of Kissho-in Temple is his real brother, who is known for introducing Okubo to Hisamitsu SHIMAZU.