Hiki Tomomune (比企朝宗)

Tomomune HIKI (the date of birth and death unknown) was a busho (Japanese military commander) from the end of the Heian period into the beginning of the Kamakura period. He was a gokenin or a shogunal retainer of the Kamakura bakufu. He was also called as HIKI no Tonai Tomomune. He belonged to the Hiki clan related to Hikinoama, a wet nurse of MINAMOTO no Yoritomo. He was appointed as udoneri (a palace attendant).

Genealogically, he is said to have been a biological child of Tomune HIKI and Hikinoama, however, concerning the relationship with Hikinoama and her husband's real name, many questions are still left.
His wife, Echigo no tsubone, was a lady-in-waiting of Masako HOJO (It is reported that she gave birth to a baby boy on February 20, 1188.)
He had a daughter, Hime no mae, who became a wife of Yoshitoki HOJO.


As Yoshikazu HIKI, an adopted child of Hikinoama, succeeded as head of the HIKI family, his brother Tomomune worked with Yoshikazu to serve Yoritomo and join Jisho-Juei War. He had gone to Kyoto several times as an envoy of Yoritomo. After the fall of MINAMOTO no Yoshinaka, he was reportedly dispatched to Hokuriku-do Road as Kannoshi or an official in charge of encouragement of agriculture, which was the predecessor of Shugo (a provincial military governor), and sorted out private lands called sho in Wakasa Province, Echizen Province, Ecchu Province, and Echigo Province.
(He was dismissed from the post of Kannoshi before 1191.)
In August, 1184, he took part in a campaign to hunt down and kill the Heike family. In 1186, he was in charge of hunting vassals of MINAMOTO no Yoshitsune, who had been in conflict with Yoritomo, and in 1189, he took part in the Battle of Oshu.

In 1192, his beautiful daughter, Hime no mae, stood high in Yoshitoki HOJO's favor and married him; then, she gave birth to Yoshitoki's second son, Tomotoki HOJO, and third son, Shigetoki HOJO. Later, Tomotoki became Shugo or a provincial military governor of Ecchu Province and Echigo Province. In February 1194, he attended the genpuku ceremony of Yasutoki HOJO. In December of the same year, he was sued over embezzlement of a territory in Echizen Province; and this is the last report of Tomomune; since then, there is no description of him in "Azuma Kagami" any more.

In September, 1203, when the Conspiracy of Yoshikazu HIKI occurred, the Hiki family went to ruin by large army of Yoshitoki HOJO, Tomomune's son-in-law, however, there isn't the name of Tomomune in the name list of the deceased family members. Although his circumstance afterwards is unclear even now, there are some speculations about it: the description of his death might have been deleted in the process of compiling "Azuma Kagami", which was edited by the HOJO family; he might have escaped somewhere because he was Yoshitoki's father-in-law; or he might have already died before the conspiracy.