Fujiwara no Tameie (藤原為家)

FUJIWARA no Tameie (1198 - May 27, 1275) was a court noble and poet in the mid Kamakura period. His father was Fujiwara no Sadaie. His official rank was shonii (Senior Second Rank) dainagon (Major Counselor). His was also known as Chuinzenji, Reiseizenmon and Minbukyonyudo.


In 1205, he had genpuku (celebrate one's coming of age) at residence of grandfather of the mother's side, FUJIWARA no Sanemune, and was adopted by his uncle Kintsune SAIONJI. In his youth, he was enthusiastic for kemari (game of kick-ball played by courtiers in ancient Japan) and gained the favor of Emperor Juntoku who shared the same interest. Although he was called for the accompany of Emperor Juntoku who was exiled to Sado at Jokyu War in 1221, it is said that he did not complied ("Jokyu Ki" [a record of Jokyu] et al.). His descendants, especially the Nijo family (main branch of the Mikohidari family), were enthusiastic for not only waka (Japanese poetry) but kemari. They founded the Mikohidari school, which is as famous as the Asukai school, and it was originated by Tameie.

After the Jokyu war, Tameie was smoothly promoted since his foster father Kintsune SAIONJI, who was close to Kamakura bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun), seized real power of Imperial Court. In 1226, he was ranked court noble as a Sangi (councillor). Then he was promoted to Chunagon (Middle Counselor) in 1236, and in 1241 he was promoted to Dainagon(chief councilor), which was superior to his father Teika.

Tameie was important poet at the poetry circle of retired Emperor Gosaga. He participated in Hoji Hyakka, and in 1251, he solely selected poems for "Shoku Gosen Wakashu" (Later Collection of Japanese Poetry, second series). He became a priest in 1256, and was called Yukaku Joshin as his Buddhist name. In 1265, he selected poems with three other people including Motoie KUJO, for "Shoku Kokin Wakashu" (anthology of imperially commissioned poetry in the Kamakura period). In his later years, he lived with his lover Abutsuni, who wrote "Izayoi Nikki" (The Diary of the Wanning Moon) and doted upon her son Tamesuke REIZEI, leaving issues upon property inheritance.

He was selected for Chokusen wakashu (anthology of Japanese poetry compiled by Imperial command) following after "Shin chokusen wakashu"(new anthology of Japanese poetry compiled by Imperial command). His left personal collections of poetry, including "Tameie-shu, " "Chuin Eishu" and "Tameie Kyo Senshu"and a treatise on waka poetry "Eigaittei."