Fujiwara no Sanemasa (藤原実政)

FUJIWARA no Sanemasa (1019 - March 23, 1093) was a nobleman during the mid Heian period. He was the child of FUJIWARA no Sukenari, who had the court rank of Jusanmi (Junior Third Rank). His court rank was Junii (Junior Second Rank) and had the title of Sangi (councilor).


He was born the third son of Hino sanmi, FUJIWARA no Sukenari, of the Hino Line of the Northern House of the Fujiwara clan (FUJIWARA no Manatsu line). Like his father, who was a Monjo hakase (professor of literature), he also learned literature and became as Monjo tokugosho (Distinguished Scholar of Letters) in 1038. Then, he passed taisaku (one of the examinations for adopting government officials under the Ritsuryo legal codes) and became Rokui no Kurodo (Chamberlain of Sixth Rank) in 1041. In 1042, he served as Shofuku (a person who repeats after what Jidoku [Imperial tutor] has read) in Dokushohajime (a ceremony when one starts to study) of the second Prince of Emperor Gosuzaku, Imperial Prince Takahito (later Emperor Gosanjo) ("Imakagami" [The Mirror of the Present]). In 1050, he became Togu gakushi (Teacher of the Classics for the Crown Prince) of Togu (the Crown Prince), Imperial Prince Takahito, and with his father, who had became Jidoku of Imperial Prince Atsuhira (Emperor Goichijo), they became as Jidoku in two generations.

Imperial Prince Takahito had deep trust in Togu gakushi Sanemasa, and when Togu Miyasudokoro (wife of Crown Prince) FUJIWARA no Moshi gave birth to his first Prince in 1053, Imperial Prince Sadahito, Sanemasa's sister (wife of FUJIWARA no Koretsune) became as one of Prince's wet nurses. Also, in 1064, when Sanemasa was appointed Kai no kuni Kokushi (Provincial Governor of Kai Province) and was going down to the place, a poem, with the general meaning that even when Sanemasa goes down to Kai Province, please do not forget about Heian-kyo (the ancient capital of Japan in current Kyoto) and myself, was sent from Imperial Prince Takahito ("Imakagami," "Jikkinsho" [Miscellany of Ten Maxims], and so on).

In 1068, following the enthronement of Imperial Prince Takahito as Emperor Gosanjo, Sanemasa was also advanced to Shoshii (Senior Fourth Rank), because of his achievements as the former Togu gakushi. In the next year, 1069, along with OE no Masafusa, who was also gakushi (teacher) of Imperial Prince Takahito, he was appointed as gakushi of new Togu Imperial Prince Sadahito (later Emperor Shirakawa), and came to serve as Togu gakushi for two generations, Takahito and Sadahito.

The trust in him did not change even after the enthronement as Emperor Gosanjo, and in between January - February, 1073, Sanemasa was selected as Benkan (an official of the Dajokan). As for personnel affairs, Gon Sachuben (Provisional Middle Controller of the Left) FUJIWARA no Takakata should have been the one selected. However, in the past at Kizu no Watashi (ferry at Kizu), Takakata slandered Sanemasa, relating to the Crown Prince (Imperial Prince Takahito) who could not become Emperor. Emperor Gosanjo, remembering that, is said to have daringly selected Sanemasa as Sachuben (Middle Controller of the Left), skipping Takakata ("Imakagami"). Right after Sanemasa became as Sachuben, Emperor Gosanjo abdicated the throne to Imperial Prince Sadahito (Emperor Shirakawa) and opened In no cho (Retired Emperor's Office) with Sanemasa as In no tsukasa (official of In no cho), but Gosanjo-in (the Retired Emperor Gosanjo) died soon after.

The next Emperor Shirakawa also treated his former teacher Sanemasa very well, and Sanemasa was smoothly advanced as Kurodo no to (Head Chamberlain) in 1077, and as Sangi (councilor) Jusanmi (Junior Third Rank) in 1080.

In 1084, Sanemasa became as Dazai daini (senior assistant governor-general of Government Headquarters in Kyushu), and went to Dazaifu. It seems that a dispute broke out at Dazaifu between the largest lord of the shoen (manor in medieval Japan) in Kyushu, Usa Hachimangu Shrine. In 1087, an invocation was made from jinin (associates of Shinto shrines) of Usa Hachimangu Shrine to Imperial palace of Shirakawa-in (Retired Emperor Shirakawa), stating that Sanemasa shot mikoshi (portable shrine) of Sei Hachimangu with an arrow and has broken it, and Sanemasa resigned the position of Dazai daini and went to Kyoto in 1088. As a result, in December of the same year, Sanemasa was banished to Izu Province, and his son FUJIWARA no Atsumune was also implicated and was made to resign from Sashoben (Minor Controller of the Left). After that, Sanemasa became a priest at Omi Province along the way to be banished but was not forgiven, and in 1093, he died at haisho (the place where a criminal is sent) in Izu Province.

Record of offices and ranks held

1038: Monjo tokugosho

1039: Mimasaka no kuni Kokushi (Provincial Governor of Mimasaka Province).

1041: Kurodo (Chamberlain)

1043: Shikibu-sho (the Ministry of Ceremonies)

1044: Jugoi (Junior Fifth Rank), Kunaisho (Imperial Household Ministry)

1050: Dainaiki (Senior Secretary of the Ministry of Central Affairs), Jugoinojo (Junior Fifth Rank, Upper Grade), Togu gakushi

1052: Mino no Gon no suke (Provisional Assistant Governor of Mino Province)

1056: Shogoi (Senior Fifth Rank)

1058: Kaga no kuni Gon no kami (Provisional Governor of Kaga Province)

1061: Jushii (Junior Fourth Rank)

1064: Kai no kuni no kami (Governor of Kai Province)

1067: Jushiinojo (Junior Fourth Rank, Upper Grade)

1068: Resigned from Togu gakushi (by Imperial succession of Imperial Prince Takahito), Shoshii (Senior Fourth Rank)

1069: Bicchu no kuni no kami (Governor of Bicchu Province), Monjo hakase, Togu gakushi

1072: Oe no kuni no kami (Governor of Oe Province), Benkan

1073: Shoshiinojo (Senior Fourth Rank, Upper Grade)

1075: Shuri sagujo shi (Secretary of the left Office of Palace Repairs), Udaiben (Major Controller of the Right)

1077: Kurodo no to

1078: Kyoshiki (the Capital Bureau)

1078: Tajima no kuni Gon no kami (Provisional Governor of Tajima Province), resigned from Monjo hakase

1080: Sangi, Sadaiben (Major Controller of the Left), Jusanmi (Junior Third Rank)

1081: Kageyushi (Board of Discharge Examiners)

1082: Shosanmi (Senior Third Rank), Sanuki no kuni no kami (Provincial Governor of Sanuki Province), removed as Ukyo no daibu (Master of the Western Capital Offices)

1084: Dazaifu

1086: Junii (Junior Second Rank)