Hojo Takanao (北条高直)

Takanao HOJO is a busho (Japanese military commander) over the end of the Kamakura period and the early period of the Northern and Southern Courts. He is from the Osaragi line of the Hojo clan.

He was born as a son of Koresada (Sadamune) HOJO who served as a Rensho (assistant to regents) of the Kamakura bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun). When the anti-shogunate movement (Genko War) was caused by the group of Emperor Godaigo, Takanao moved from place to place to fight as one of major captains of the bakufu army. At the time of defeat of the Kamakura bakufu, he was attacking Masashige KUSUNOKI who barricaded himself inside in Kongo-san Chihaya-jo Castle in Kawachi Province. However, his troops scattered in all directions due to the estrangement of Takauji ASHIKAGA, therefore Takanao was evacuated to Nara with his remaining troops on May 10. When he came to know that Takatoki HOJO and others committed suicide on May 22, he gave up the resistance and surrendered to Takauji ASHIKAGA on June 5 after taking the tonsure, and then he was imprisoned in Kyoto.

Because Takauji was a relative of the Hojo family, he pleaded to save the life of Takanao. However, the remnants of the Hojo family caused Kamakura Invasion Incident on April 21, 1334, therefore exterminating the Hojo family was conducted more severely, and Takanao was killed by decapitation at Kyoto Amidaga-mime Peak together with Tokiharu HOJO and others on October 15.

His execution date of October 15 was got by referring to Taiheiki (The Record of the Great Peace). According to the other historical materials, the execution date is diversified such as on May 3 (The Baishoron [literally, the argument about Japanese plum and pine; a Japanese historical epic written in the mid-fourteenth century] and a family register of deaths of Renge-ji Temple), in May (Horyakukanki [A History Book of the 14th century in Japan]) and in June.