Tada Yorisada (多田頼貞)

Yorisada TADA (? - September 9, 1343) was a Busho (Japanese military commander) in the period of the Northern and Southern Courts (Japan). His official rank was Chugushiki (Office of the Consort's Household).

He was a legitimate grandchild of the ninth generation of MINAMOTO no Yorimitsu and served Emperor Godaigo. In the battle of Mt. Kasagi in 1331 which involved Emperor Godaigo, he fought against Sadafuji NIKAIDO and did remarkable work to repulse attacks by the enemy, but when the main force of the Emperor completely collapsed by a surprise raid, he was compelled to withdraw his troops.

At the time of the Kenmu Restoration after the downfall of the Kamakura bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun), he was appointed Mokudai (deputy governor) of Nose-go, Settsu Province, but when Takauji ASHIKAGA rose in revolt against the Emperor, he started taking part in various battles. He challenged the Hosokawa clan to a fight in Yamashiro Yawata (Yawata City, Kyoto Prefecture) in 1338 and in Iyo Province in 1340 assisting Yoshisuke WAKIYA on the order of Emperor Gomurakami. Although he maintained a superior position early on in the battle, he was defeated due to too much difference in military forces and escaped to Bizen Province.

In Bizen Province, he was based in areas around Hamano (Hamano, Minami Ward, Okayama City) and Amihama, Amihama, Naka Ward, Okayama City) regaining his influence by getting on his side Gozoku (local ruling family) of neighboring areas. In 1343, an army of the Akamatsu clan made an attack on him, which he drove back, but at the time of another attack, he lost due to an act of treachery and was driven to the corner.
He killed himself on September 9 saying to his eldest legitimate son, Yorinaka TADA who was in Settsu Province in his will that 'The Tada family has never served Buke (samurai family) for generations, and if you will serve Shogun, change the family name to Nose.'

When Takauji ASHIKAGA came to know it later, he was moved to tears by Yorisada's loyalty to the Emperor, and is said to have acknowledged the Yorinaka's Shoryo (territory) in Nose and in addition given 17 Go (an administrative area larger than a village) to Yorinaka. As far as we can see in documents, he seems to have been a person whose actions were strongly motivated by a sense of moral obligation and by humane feelings and was good at managing his people.

[Original Japanese]