Shimazu Tadakage (島津忠景)

Tadakage SHIMAZU (1241 - 1300) was busho (Japanese military commander) and kajin (waka poet) in the Kamakura period. He was Jitoshiki (manager and lord of manor) of Chiran-in Warehouse in Satsuma Province (Present Minami Kyushu City, Kagoshima Prefecture). He was Jitoshiki of Awaga-jinja Shrine in Asago County, Tajima Province (100 cho (approximately 100 hectares) in size) (included in 'Tajima no kuni Ota bumi in 1285' (Cadaster of Tajima Province in 1285), "Hyogo-ken shi" (The History of Hyogo Prefecture). He was Goro Saemon no jo (third-ranked officer of the Left Division of Outer Palace Guards), Suo no Hogan (judge), Tayu Hogan, Bungo no kami (Governor of Bungo Province), and Hitachi no suke (Assistant Governor of Hitachi Province). He was Jugoinoge (Junior Fifth Rank, Lower Grade). His homyo (a name given to a person who enters the Buddhist priesthood) was Soshin.


He was the third son of Tadatsuna SHIMAZU, Suo no kami (Governor of Suo Province) and the founder of the Echizen-Shimazu clan. His real family name was Koremune. His elder brothers were saburo (the third son) Tadayuki SHIMAZU and shiro (the fourth son) Tadayasu SHIMAZU. There is another view that Tadayuki was a paternal half-brother ("The Echizen-Shimazu Clan and His Personality and Genealogy" written by Masato SUGIMOTO). His younger brothers were rokuro (the sixth son) Tadayori SHIMAZU, nanaro (the seventh son) Sadakata SHIMAZU, and Tadauji SHIMAZU, Aki no kami (Governor of Aki Province) (Echizen family). His descendants were the prestige clans of Satsuma Province such as Chiran clan and Usuku clan; the clans settled in Echizen Province (Tadanobu SHIMAZU) and Shinano Province (Shinano-Shimazu clan) were also his descendants.


He excelled in art and was selected to be guards of the Imperial Palace as a trusted vassal of Imperial Prince Munetaka, the sixth Shogun of Kamakura bakufu, such as hisashi ban (a valet who keeps the night watch at the eaves of building), 門見参衆, mikoshi joge ketsuban (a night watcher on a lattice), and hiru banshu (afternoon guards). In 1261, he frequently attended "Munetaka Shinno ke Hyakugojuban Utaawase" (Poetry Competition with 150 matches hosted by the Imperial Prince Munetaka family), other waka-kai (a gathering of waka), and renga-kai (a gathering of linked verse) hosted by the Imperial prince and Tameuji NIJO. He was viewed as a leading poet from samurai families in the mature stage of Kamakura poetry circle. Accordingly he was trusted by Imperial Prince Munetaka, and it is described in "Azuma Kagami" (The Mirror of the East) that he frequently attended the Imperial prince's private activities. It can be understood that Tadakage brought prominent achievements compared to his brother Tadayuki SHIMAZU as well as Tadatoki SHIMAZU and Hisatsune SHIMAZU of the head family. He was learned in kemari (a game played by aristocrats in the Heian period) and selected as junomari bugyo (a commissioner responsible for kemari ritual of the bakufu) in 1261. He was appointed to kebiishi (officials with judicial and police powers) in January, 1266. He had a firm character and was faithful; when a rebellion happened on the recall of Imperial Prince Munetaka on August 11, 1266, many trusted vassals escaped from Shogun's palace leaving the Imperial Prince, whereas only Tadakage and a small number of people stayed in Shogun's palace; this attitude of him is written in "Hojo kudaiki" (Records of nine generations of the Hojo clan) as being valuable. He was conferred a peerage in December 1267. He was transferred to Rokuhara Tandai (an administrative and judicial agency in Rokuhara, Kyoto) in his later life, and it was assumed that he worked in Kyoto ("Sanemikyoki"). He died in May, 1300 at the age of 60 ('Shimazushi Keizu' (Family Tree of Shimazu Clan) collected in "Echizen-Shimazu ke Monjo" (Documents of Echizen-Shimazu Family)). His works were collected in "Shokukokin Wakashu" (Collection of Ancient and Modern Japanese Poetry, Continued), "Shoku Shui Wakashu" (12th imperial anthology), "Shingosen Wakashu" (NEW Later Collection of Japanese Poetry), "Gyokuyo Wakashu" (Jeweled Leaves Collection), "Shokusenzai Wakashu" (Waka Collection of a Thousand Years Continued), "Shoku Goshui Wakashu" (Later Collection of Gleaning Continued), "Shin Senzai Wakashu" (New Collection of Japanese Poems of a Thousand Years), "Shinshuishu" (New Collection of Gleanings (of Japanese Poems), and "Shinshoku Kokin Wakashu" (NEW Collection of Ancient and Modern Japanese Poetry Continued).

His Works

How should I lie down and wait for the person I've been waiting for, and autumn wind blows when she is coming (love in the autumn night, Tadakage KOREMUNE, "Shokukokin Wakashu" Volume 12, Koiuta (Lovers Poetry) 2).
Even though I squeeze fujigoromo (clothes made of Japanese wisteria) with dew, autumn does not come unless drying its sleeve (Thinking about parents, "Shokukokin Wakashu" Volume 16, Aishuuta (Melancholy Poetry.)
Note that this poem is said to have been the one to grieve for his father Tadatsuna's death, but another theory says this was to grieve for his mother's death.
Refer to the section of 'Tadatsuna SHIMAZU.'

Nodding at night with salt breeze, autumn moon light equally spreads over the place ("Shoku Shui Wakashu" Volume 5, Autumn 1). Thinking of not having a false heart means the supported reason is true. (In the songs of five commandments, Fumogokai (a Buddhist admonition not to tell a lie), "Shingosen Wakashu" Volume 9, Shakyoka (waka about Buddhism)). In a mountain village, I haven't dreamed for a while, but I get used to it and sleep in pine breeze on the peak (With the heart of mountain village, "Gyokuyo Wakashu" Volume 16, Zouka (Other Poetry) 3).