Shomyo (lesser daimyo) (小名)
Shomyo means a samurai family which was not ranked as high as daimyo. Attention is necessary when using the term shomyo, as its meaning varies depending on the period or situation. The term shomyo itself appeared as early as the Sengoku Period (Period of Warring States) (Japan) and referred to vassals who controlled a castle, or daimyo with a low stipend.
In the Edo period, Buke shohatto (Laws for the Military Houses) initially prescribed that 'daimyo is an owner of a castle with a stipend of not less than 50,000 koku of rice' and 'shomyo is a regional government officer (jinya) with a stipend of under 50,000 koku.'
Accordingly, daimyo with a stipend of under 50,000 koku or jinya daimyo were sometimes referred to as shomyo.
Additionally,vassals with a stipend of not less than 4,000 koku were sometimes referred to as shomyo.