Sanjonishi Sanetaka (三条西実隆)

Sanetaka SANJONISHI (May 20, 1455 to November 15, 1537) was a nobleman in the Muromachi period. Sanetaka was the second son of naidaijin (internal minister), Kimiyasu SANJONISHI. Sanetaka's political rank was Shonii (Senior Second Rank) and naidaijin. His given name was originally Kimiyo and Kiminobu. His called himself Shoyoin.


Sanetaka was born in a house on Mushanokoji street in Kyoto. Sanetaka's older brother, Sanetsura SANJONISHI died in 1458 and Sanetaka's father, Kimiyasu died in 1460. Therefore, Sanetaka succeeded his father as the head of the family under the guardianship of his uncle on his mother's side, Chikanaga KANROJI. The Onin War occurred in Kyoto in 1467 and, therefore, Sanetaka evacuated to Kurama-dera Temple and the house of the SANJONISHI family burned. Sanetaka celebrated his coming of age in 1469. Sanetaka was appointed to naidaijin in 1506. Sanetaka became a Buddhism priest in 1516. Sanetaka served the Emperor Gohanazono, the Emperor Gotsuchimikado, the Emperor Gokashiwabara, and the Emperor Gonara and was a friend of Yoshimasa ASHIKAGA, the eighth shogun of the Muromachi bakufu bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun) and Yoshizumi ASHIKAGA, the 11th shogun of the bakufu.

With Kaneyoshi ICHIJO, Sanetaka maintained and developed the culture of the nobles such as waka poem and received Kokin denju (the secret transmissions of the "Kokinshu," Anthology of Old and New Japanese Poems) from Sogi. Sanetaka taught Joo TAKENO the tea ceremony and was a friend of Yoshitaka OUCHI's in Suo Province.

Sanetaka's wife was a daughter of Norihide KAJUJI and her sisters included a beloved maid of the Emperor Gotsuchimikado and Fujiko KAJUJI who was nyogo (a high-rank maid) of the Emperor Gokashiwabara and the mother of Emperor Gonara and, therefore, Sanetaka had a strong relation with the Imperial Family. Sanetaka had no wife and this was very rare in those days.

A diary in Chinese characters, "Sanetaka Diary" has the value as a historical reference. Sanetaka's books included "Setsugyokushu," "Monsetsushu" as his waka collections and "Eikadaigaisho" and "A Visit to Koyasan." Sanetaka had faith in the Jodo (Pure Land) sect.

Sanetaka's grave is located in Nison-in Temple in Kyoto City and is beside the graves of the members of the Sanjonishi family.

[Original Japanese]