Nikaido Yukimasa (二階堂行政)

Yukimasa NIKAIDO (year of birth and death unknown) held the office of Mandokoro-rei (later called Mandokoro Betto [administrator of a Buddhist temple]), a member of the 13-person parliament during the Kamakura Period. He was the founder of the NIKAIDO clan which had succeeded to the post of Mandokoro (the chief of Mandokoro, the Administrative Board) for generations. As he later took up his residence in Nikaido, Kamakura, his clan was named NIKAIDO.

Family Line

With his family line starting with FUJIWARA no Otomaro; his father was FUJIWARA no Yukito and his mother was the younger sister of Yoritomo MINAMOTO's maternal grandfather, FUJIWARA no Suenori who held the office of Atsuta daiguji (the highest priest serving at Atsuta Shrine in Owari Province). It is considered Yukimasa was employed by Yoritomo through this maternal connection.

According to 'Sonpi Bunmyaku' (a text that records the lineages of the aristocracy) and 'Family Tree of the NIKAIDO clan', the NIKAIDO family had been ranked Jugoinoge (Junior Fifth Rank, Lower Grade) for generations; Koreto and Koreyuki served as Suruga no kami (the governor of Suruga Province) and Koreyori worked as Totoumi gon no kami (the governor of Totoumi Province). Although the records of 'Zoku Gunshoruiju' (The Collection of Historical Sources, second series) and 'Family Tree of the KUDONIKAIDO clan' show that four generations of the NIKAIDO family from Koreto, Koreyuki, Koreyori to Yukito served as Totoumi no kami (the governor of Totoumi Province), both records could be created after the establishment of the NIKAIDO clan therefore these descriptions might be fabricated in some parts. And it is recorded that his father, FUJIWARA no Yukito, was deported to Owari in the Hoen Era (1135 - 1141) for his killing of the provincial governor of Totoumi Province, and Yukimasa was born to the younger sister of FUJIWARA no Suenori, the Atsuta daiguji in Owari Province, during that period. However, given that the father of FUJIWARA no Suenori assumed the post of Mokudai (a deputy provincial governor) of Owari Province while continuing living in Mikawa (according to 'Sonpi Bunmyaku') and that it was common in this period of time that children of a provincial governor had a big influence on their ruling areas, it is possible the grandfather wielded a certain amount of power in Totoumi and Suruga without leaving these areas.

Career in Kamakura

The name of Yukinari first appeared in Article August 24 of 1184 in "Azuma Kagami" (The Mirror of the East; a chronicle of the early history of the Kamakura bakufu [Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun]) as a muneage bugyo (ridgepole-raising shogunate administrator) of a newly-built Kumonjo (an administration office) along with MIYOSHI no Yasunobu. It is believed that he left for Kamakura to serve Yoritomo a little while before that date. In the Kissho-hajime (the ceremony announcing the start of new official works) of a newly-built Kumonjo in October 6, 1184, he participated in the ceremony as a yoriudo (an officer for Kumonjo) under the bettor, OE no Hiromoto (then called, NAKAHARA no Hiromoto).

According to Article September 7 of 1189 in "Azuma Kagami", Yukimasa was in charge of settling a dispute of an incident related to Hachiro YURI (a retainer of FUJIWARA no Yasuhira) who was captured in September 7 during the Battle of Oshu of 1189, and also Article September 8 says that he compiled a report on the Battle of Oshu to be delivered to the Imperial Court. Fumihiko GOMI speculated that Yukinari was a military commissioner in the Battle of Oshu.

In Article September 15 of 1190 which describes the MINAMOTO no Yoritomo's visit to Kyoto, Yukinari was listed as the head of bugyonin (magistrates) who supervised various matters including routes to take, money and other miscellaneous things. At the same time, he was frequently named as Sata (an officer in charge of enforcing a lord's order) in "Azuma Kagami", and in Article January 15 of 1191, he was referred to as 'the accountant, FUJIWARA no Asomi Yukinari', which position was ranked second to Betto, OE no Hiromoto. In 1193, he was conferred Goi (Fifth Rank) and called Minbu no Taifu, and promoted to Betto when Mandokoro bettor employed a multiple-Betto system the same year.

According to Article April 12 of 1199 which MINAMOTO no Yoriie who succeeded Yoritomo decided to stop the direct involvement in lawsuits, and 13 senior vassals became in charge of settling a matter through discussion, Minbu no Taifu Yukinari was listed among the vassals along with OE no Hiromoto and MIYOSHI no Yasunobu, indicating that Yukimasa was one of the governmental bureaucrats responsible for practical work to support the early stage of the Kamakura Government.


His descendants used the surname of NIKAIDO and the direct descendants of Yukimitsu NIKAIDO assumed the post of Mandokoro for generations almost exclusively.

Another child, Yukimura NIKAIDO, served as a military commissioner and compiled a record of the Battle of WADA and a list of rewards given to soldiers, as shown in the Article May 4 of 1213 written during the Battle of Wada.
The article describes that 'he was a judge of Yamashiro Province and Yukichika and Tadaie supported him.'
This family had succeeded to the post of Kebiishi (officials with judicial and police powers) for generations by heredity. It is believed that many records written by Yukimasa NIKAIDO, Yukimitsu NIKAIDO and Yukimura NIKAIDO were used in "Azuma Kagami", and some of its descriptions, such as ones in the Article September 15 of 1204 and December 19 of 1213, honor Yukimitsu NIKAIDO.