Jufukuin (寿福院)

Jufukuin (1570-April 7, 1631) was the concubine of Toshiie MAEDA, who was the founder of the Maeda clan, the ruling family of the Kaga domain. She was the third daughter of Shinbe UEKI, a vassal of the Asakura clan. Her brother was Zenjuin Nichijun (a founding monk who contributed to the reconstruction of Kyoo-ji Temple). Her sister was Yae (the wife of Shinjuro DAIMONJIYA). She started serving the Maeda clan as a maid for O-Matsu-no-kata (aka, ' Hoshunin'), the legal wife of Toshiie. While staying at a camp in Nagoya Castel during the Bunroku-Keicho War, Toshiie flirted with her and made her his concubine, and she later gave birth to Toshitsune MAEDA, the third head of the Maeda clan.

Her birth name was 'Chiyo.'
When she first came to serve the clan, it was discovered that she and the sixth daughter of the Maeda clan had the same name, and she was required to change her name to 'Chobo', or 'Ochobo.'

After the death of Toshinaga MAEDA, the second head of the clan, Jufukuin's son Toshitsune became the head of the clan, and Jufukuin was dispatched to Edo as a hostage in exchange for Hoshunin. Incidentally, it is known that Jufukuin and Hoshunin were on very bad terms (although Hoshuin seems to have been on good terms with other concubines, because she petitioned the bakufu [Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun] to appoint Toshitaka MAEDA, another concubine's son, as a daimyo [Japanese feudal lord]).
This fact is rarely introduced in TV series or novels, possibly because it is detrimental to the image of Hoshunin, who is known as 'a wise woman.'

In 1631, Jufukuin passed away in the Edo residence of the Kaga domain. After cremation at Ikegami Honmon-ji Temple, her funeral service was held a second time at Kyoo-ji Temple in Kanazawa (currently Kanazawa City), and her ashes were placed in a tomb in Myojo-ji Temple in Noto Province. Her posthumous Buddhist name is 'Jufukuin-dono Kagaku Nichie Daishi' (Honorable Jufukuin of floral mountains and thriving Sun).

Jufukuin was an ardent follower of the Nichirenshu Sect and presented the Lotus Sutra to Tanjo-ji Temple In Awa Province (Kamogawa City) as a tribute in 1622 when she was dispatched to Edo as a hostage. In addition, she donated a main temple and five-story pagoda to Myoken-ji Temple in Kyoto, and dedicated a five-story pagoda to Toshiie for the peace of his soul in Mt. Minobu.

Incidentally, the novel "My Ambition Stretching over Thousands of Miles" (authored by Akihiko NAKAMURA), which depicts the three generations of the Maeda clan from Toshitsune to Tsunanori MAEDA, has been run in the Hokkoku newspaper since January 2007, and featured 'Ochobo' as a protagonist in the first half part of the story.