The battle of Sekigahara in 1600 is the most decisive battle happened in the history of Japan. Together, they made up a force of just under 82,000 men. [13], The battle started when Fukushima Masanori, the leader of the Tokugawa advance guard, charged north from the Eastern Army's left flank along the Fuji River against the Western Army's right centre. Later, a supposed conspiracy to assassinate Ieyasu surfaced, and many Toyotomi loyalists, including Maeda Toshiie's son, Toshinaga, were accused of taking part and forced to submit to Ieyasu's authority. [14] However, he was already engaging forces under the command of Tōdō Takatora, Kyōgoku Takatsugu, and Oda Yūraku when Kobayakawa charged. This was especially evident amongst the loyalist bureaucrats, who suspected Ieyasu of agitating unrest amongst Toyotomi's former vassals. Professor Yoshiji Yamasaki of, Learn how and when to remove this template message. Ōtani's forces had dry gunpowder, so they opened fire on the turncoats, making the charge of 16,000 men mostly ineffective. Legend has it that the rōnin Miyamoto Musashi was present at the battle among Ukita Hideie's army and escaped the defeat of Hideie's forces unharmed. Paperback – Large Print, January 4, 2020. He sent his allies' forces in a line to the front, and held his own troops in reserve. Before the Battle. Since the Tokugawa army departed from Edo, it could only take two roads, both of which converged on Gifu Castle. Shortly thereafter Ieyasu moved his left flank forward to engage with the Ōtani soldiers and directed nearly 20,000 men from his right flank to directly assault Mitsunari’s position, which was behind a series of fortifications adjacent to the Shimazu clan. This changed with the 2017 film Sekigahara, which covers the rivalry between Ishida Mitsunari and Tokugawa Ieyasu before leading to the battle itself in the final third of the film. [13], Ishida held his current defensive position and Ieyasu deployed his own forces. It basically sealed the fate of the country for the following 250 years or so. [28] It is unlikely Adams himself was at the battle, although some fictional accounts have entertained the possibility. The Battle of Sekigahara (Shinjitai: 関ヶ原の戦い; Kyūjitai: 關ヶ原の戰い, Hepburn romanization: Sekigahara no Tatakai) was a decisive battle on October 21, 1600 (Keichō 5, 15th day of the 9th month), this battle was the biggest and one of the most important battles in Japanese feudal history, that preceded the establishment of the Tokugawa shogunate. In 1664, Hayashi Gahō, Tokugawa historian and rector of Yushima Seidō, summarised the consequences of the battle: "Evil-doers and bandits were vanquished and the entire realm submitted to Lord Ieyasu, praising the establishment of peace and extolling his martial virtue. Earlier, when Hidemoto decided to attack the Tokugawa forces, Hiroie refused to comply, stating he was busy eating and asked to be left alone. As the battle grew more intense, Ieyasu finally ordered his arquebuses to fire at Kobayakawa's position on Mount Matsuo to force a choice. To test his loyalty, the daimyō ordered some of his arquebusiers to fire on the Kobayakawa soldiers. … The Battle of Sekigahara was the last major conflict between the western and eastern armies. Initially, Ieyasu's eastern army had 75,000 men, while Mitsunari's western army numbered 120,000. [20] Some among the 15,000 troops respected Hosokawa so much they intentionally slowed their pace. Ieyasu's son Hidetada led another group through Nakasendō. The Battle of Sekigahara was the turning point in the Japanese Unification Wars (1550–1615). Sekigahara was the largest samurai battle in Japanese history, and was the largest battle fought on the mainland of Japan. Following Tokugawa's victory, his son successfully guaranteed Yoshitaka's safety from Ieyasu. When that failed, Ieyasu refrained from killing him, instead moving to Ōsaka Castle to become Hideyori’s physical protector and further extend his power. Neither side saw each other due to the dense fog caused by the earlier rain. Four additional western divisions defected and attacked the Ōtani forces from a third side. The Battle of Sekigahara (Shinjitai: 関ヶ原の戦い; Kyūjitai: 關ヶ原の戰い, Hepburn romanization: Sekigahara no Tatakai) was a decisive battle on October 21, 1600 (Keichō 5, 15th day of the 9th month), this battle was the biggest and one of the most important battles in Japanese feudal history, that preceded the establishment of the Tokugawa shogunate. When Hideyoshi died in 1598, the new heir Toyotomi Hideyori was only 5 years old, necessitating a regency government. Led by daimyō Ishida Mitsunari, Toyotomi loyalists based mostly in western Japan clashed with largely eastern daimyō fighting for Tokugawa Ieyasu. [1] Ieyasu had also sneaked in a supply of arquebuses. Around 8:00 am, wind blew away the fog, and both sides noticed their respective adversary's positions. [6] Additionally, Hideyoshi ordered the execution of his heir, the regent, as well as the entire family of his heir in 1595. Before the fateful confrontation in Sekigahara, Ishida Mitsunari claimed Osaka Castle and planned to take hostages from relatives loyal to Toyotomi. After Ieyasu defeated Mitsunari in Sekigahara, Kodain-in received several women from the Western army at her home. Sekigahara (関ヶ原) is a 2017 jidaigeki Japanese film directed by Masato Harada starring Junichi Okada as Ishida Mitsunari. Ishida deployed his troops in a strong defensive position, flanked by two streams with high ground on the opposite banks. Tired from a day's march and their gunpowder wet from the rain, Ishida and his forces stopped at Sekigahara. On the morning of October 21, a thick fog blanketed the valley until 8:00 am, at which time Naomasa’s shock troops circumvented their own vanguard command and made contact with the Ukita forces. The initial invasion of Okinawa on April 1, 1945, was the largest amphibious assault in the Pacific Theater of World War II. [8] Rumours started to spread stating that Ieyasu, at that point the only surviving contemporary ally of Oda Nobunaga, would take over Hideyoshi's legacy just as Nobunaga's was taken. The battle field of Sekigahara is located on the border of Shiga and Gifu prefecture. Ishida Mitsunari had hoped to meet Ieyasu somewhere further east; Ieyasu's primary objective had been Sawayama castle. Sekigahara was second only to the Battle of Okinawa in being the largest armed conflict between two opposing armies to take place on Japanese soil. "[26] Musashi is reticent on the matter, writing only that he had "participated in over six battles since my youth".[27]. At 1:30 pm Yoshihiro and his men began to retreat, but not before a volley of arquebus fire struck Naomasa and forced him to stop pursuing them. [30] Tokyo Broadcasting System aired a television miniseries about the subject in January 1981, also entitled Sekigahara [ja], loosely based on Shiba's novel series. The battle did not get a full movie featuring it until 2017, with previous inclusions generally only including a brief snippet in passing, such as the beginning of the 1954 movie Samurai I or the 1991 film Journey of Honor. The battle ended in the victory of Ieyasu. Three clans in particular did not take the aftermath of Sekigahara lightly: The descendants of these three clans would in two centuries collaborate to bring down the Tokugawa shogunate, leading to the Meiji Restoration. Characteristics of Sengoku Period armies. Two main factions arose during the fading years of Hideyoshi's rule and the immediate aftermath of his death. Ieyasu then ordered attacks from his right and his centre against the Western Army’s left in order to support Fukushima's attack. Cannon use during the winter siege of Osaka. The cannons from the Liefde, the trading ship that English sailor William Adams came to Japan on, were used by Tokugawa's forces at Sekigahara. Please select which sections you would like to print: Corrections? This forced Ishida Mitsunari to retreat southward in the rain. Ring in the new year with a Britannica Membership - Now 30% off. Battle of Sekigahara, (October 21, 1600), in Japanese history, a major conflict fought in central Honshu between vassals of Toyotomi Hideyoshi at the end of the Sengoku (“Warring States”) period. At this point, the buffer Ōtani established was outnumbered. Omissions? These tairō were Uesugi Kagekatsu, Mōri Terumoto, Maeda Toshiie, Ukita Hideie, and Tokugawa Ieyasu. Kuki Yoshitaka, one of Nobunaga and Hideyoshi top general, fought alongside the western forces, while his son Kuki Moritaka joined the eastern forces, under Tokugawa Ieyasu. In October the western armies besieged a few eastern strongholds, but they were unable to progress past Gifu, which had fallen to the Tōkaidō army. With Mitsunari’s coalition shattered, Ieyasu was able to capture Sawayama and Ōsaka castles in a matter of days. Ieyasu himself commanded 30,000 men and his subordinates led another 40,000 men. The incident did much damage to Ishida's reputation, which greatly reduced his chances of recruiting more allies, some of whom were also secretly Christians. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. [13], Kobayakawa was one of the daimyō who had been courted by Tokugawa. Hideyoshi quickly avenged his master and consolidated control over Japan afterward, with the aid of his brother Hidenaga. https://www.gmtgames.com/p-690-sekigahara-4th-printing.aspx Save 30% off a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Kobayakawa Hideaki and his soldiers were positioned on the slopes of Mount Matsuo just south of the Ōtani forces, while Mōri Hidemoto and his vassals waited with Chōsokabe Morichika on Mount Nangū southwest of Ieyasu’s rear guard. Mōri seized Osaka Castle for their base of operations, since most of Tokugawa's forces had vacated the area to attack Uesugi. Tensions between them sometimes boiled into open hostilities, with relations eventually degenerating into the conflicts of 1600 that led to Sekigahara. The site encompasses the sites of the initial position of Tokugawa Ieyasu (徳川家康最初陣地), the final position of Tokugawa Ieyasu (徳川家康最後陣地), the position of Ishida Mitsunari (石田三成陣地), the Okayama beacon (岡山烽火場), the grave of Ōtani Yoshitsugu (大谷吉隆墓), the east kubizuka (東首塚), and the west kubizuka (西首塚)[29]. Even though the Western forces had tremendous tactical advantages, Ieyasu had already been in contact with many daimyo in the Western Army for months, promising them land and leniency after the battle should they switch sides. When Ieyasu officially condemned him and demanded that he come to Kyoto to explain himself, Kagekatsu's chief advisor, Naoe Kanetsugu responded with a counter-condemnation that mocked Ieyasu's abuses and violations of Hideyoshi's rules, and Ieyasu was infuriated.[9]. Yodo-dono was present in the maintenance of the Western army, although she did not play a very notable role during the campaign. By September, Ieyasu had reached the city of Ōyama with some 50,000 men, and the western army had claimed both Ōsaka and Fushimi Castle. Ishida, Yukinaga, and Ekei were some of those who were captured and a few, like Shimazu Yoshihiro, were able to return to their home provinces. In 1603, he was awarded the title of Shogun by the Emperor making him supreme military commander of Japan. [12] Ishida could not risk leaving a force that could attack his rear, so he marched on it. [13] Knowing that the Tokugawa forces were heading towards Osaka, Ishida decided to abandon his positions and marched to Sekigahara. One of the most important battles in the history of Japan it marked the end of the power struggle that began with the death of the Warlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi who had risen far from his peasant beginning but because of them could not claim the title of Shogun. [21] If either of these armies participated in the conflict, it could have ended quite differently. Sekigahara was a village located in a mountainous valley at the intersection of a few major roads. The Battle of Sekigahara: The History and Legacy of the Battle that Unified Japan under the Tokugawa Shogunate chronicles the events that led to one of the most important conflicts in Japanese history. In doing so, he gained control of many former Toyotomi territories. Even though he had agreed to defect to the Tokugawa side, in the actual battle he was hesitant and remained neutral. The loyalists sought to preserve the Toyotomi legacy and halt Ieyasu’s rise to power. Find … According to one account, the Musashi yuko gamei, "Musashi's achievements stood out from the crowd, and were known by the soldiers in all camps. Shima Sakon was shot and fatally wounded by a round from an arquebus[18] and Ōtani Yoshitsugu committed suicide. Read Wikipedia in Modernized UI. This left the Western Army's right flank wide open, so Fukushima and Kobayakawa began to roll it up. Thus Ishida's right flank was destroyed and his centre was being pushed back, so he retreated. He kept the Mōri army at bay, and since Ishida had no more support, he was defeated. This made up the bulk of what would later be called the Eastern Army. Ieyasu marched on Gifu while Ishida Mitsunari was delayed at Fushimi Castle. His right flank was reinforced by daimyō Kobayakawa Hideaki on Mount Matsuo. Battle of Sekigahara. It … Ieyasu also saw that Hideaki had yet to move. Matsuo, and Mt. Yoshihiro fell back behind Mount Nangū, passing the Chōsokabe rear guard as they fled and informing them that the battle was going poorly. [19] Mōri Terumoto and his forces had remained entrenched at Osaka Castle rather than join the battle, and later quietly surrendered to Tokugawa. https://www.britannica.com/event/Battle-of-Sekigahara, Kids Web Japan - The Battle of Sekigahara. Ieyasu responded with a declaration of war. One player assumes the role of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the most powerful daimyo in Japan. There is no hard evidence to prove whether Musashi was present or not for the battle. Meanwhile, Ii Naomasa had engaged Shimazu Yoshihiro in his stationary position. At around 10:00 am the Tokugawa rear guard attacked some of the western divisions stationed on Mount Nangū. [13], On October 20, 1600, Ieyasu learned that Ishida Mitsunari had deployed his troops at Sekigahara in a defensive position. However, many of them were at that moment besieging Hasedō. Fearing a direct attack, some of Mitsunari’s men attempted to raid Ieyasu’s camp on October 20, but neither side inflicted much damage. Hideyoshi had risen from humble roots – his father was an ashigaru (foot-soldier) – to become the ruler of Japan. Both sides panicked and withdrew, but this resulted in both sides being aware of their adversary's presence. Ryōtarō Shiba wrote a three volume historical novel called Sekigahara on it in the 1960s. At that point Kobayakawa joined the battle as a member of the Eastern Army. To this end, Ishida's forces headed for Gifu Castle in order to use it as a staging area to move on Kyoto, since it was controlled by his ally Oda Hidenobu.[6]. To bolster his claim, Hideyoshi married noble women so that his heirs at least would descend from suitably distinguished families.[5][6]. Even though the Western army had tremendous tactical advantages, Ieyasu had already been in contact with many of the daimyō in the Western Army for months, promising them land and leniency after the battle should they switch sides. At 11:00 am Mitsunari lit the signal fire for Kobayakawa Hideaki to flank the eastern army. Login with Facebook Hideyoshi’s health began declining in 1590, and had gotten worse by 1598. Recognizing that his position was untenable, Yoshitsugu asked one of his retainers to kill him. [8] However, Uesugi Kagekatsu, one of Hideyoshi's appointed regents, defied Ieyasu by building up his military. Kikkawa's troops formed the front lines of the Mōri army, which was commanded by his cousin Mōri Hidemoto. His death created a power vacuum; there was no appointed shōgun over the armies. Hideyoshi's second wife, Yodo-dono, inherited the political power of both figures, as Hideyori was too young to lead the Toyotomi clan. Subsequently, Ieyasu began to receive hostages, nobles who were involved with the Mitsunari army, such as Maeda Matsu, whose son, Maeda Toshimasa, was involved in the Western army, while her other son, Maeda Toshinaga, was an ally of the Eastern army. This fortress was a halfway point between Osaka and Kyoto and was controlled by the Tokugawa ally Torii Mototada. Nobunaga unified much of Japan under his rule after defeating the Shōgun Ashikaga Yoshiaki and ending the Ashikaga shogunate; however, he was betrayed by Akechi Mitsuhide and died at the Honnō-ji Incident of 1582. Ieyasu’s army of nearly 89,000 soldiers entered the valley from the Nakasendō in the east with Fukushima Masanori at the vanguard; Ii Naomasa commanded a key division of shock troops. The film is somewhat notable in being a revisionist reassessment, showing Tokugawa more as an antagonist while Mitsunari is a man of honor and the main protagonist. Mitsunari ordered Shimazu Yoshihiro to move his troops forward, but the daimyō insisted on moving when he felt it was appropriate and refused to budge. The Story of the Battle of Sekigahara Among the soldiers forming ranks at the battlefield of Sekigahara as dawn broke on the morning of October 21, 1600, there were few who could doubt that a decisive battle here would mark the end of decades of civil strife and that, at the end of the day, a new shogun with power throughout all Japan would emerge. Kikkawa Hiroie had also been in communication with eastern generals, having informed them that the Mōri clan would not move during the battle. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). [12], At the same time, 15,000 Toyotomi troops were being held up by 500 troops under Hosokawa Yūsai at Tanabe Castle in present-day Maizuru, Kyoto Prefecture. They had been following the Western Army, and benefited from considerably better weather. Mitsunari was stationed a short distance away at Ōgaki Castle with his forces. Victory at the Battle of Sekigahara allowed Tokugawa Ieyasu to seize control of the country and establish the Tokugawa Shogunate from his home base of Edo (modern-day Tokyo). James Clavell's 1975 novel, Shōgun, includes a fictionalized version of both the political struggle and the battle. Led by daimyō Ishida Mitsunari, Toyotomi loyalists based mostly in western Japan clashed with largely eastern daimyō fighting for Tokugawa Ieyasu. Sekigahara is a -player game depicting the campaign in the year 600 that founded the Tokugawa Shogunate. Ishida Mitsunari, grasping the opportunity created by the chaos, rose up in response and created an alliance to challenge Ieyasu's supporters. The nation had been unified first under Oda Nobunaga, who was assassinated by a traitorous general, and then by his successor, Toyotomi Hideyoshi. Toyotomi Hideyoshi was a prominent general under Oda Nobunaga. The battle commenced around 8am, when a small contingent of cavalry samurai under Ii Naomasa and his son-in-law, Matsudaira Tadayoshi—who was also Tokugawa Ieyasu’s fourth son—made a sharp attack on the largest of Western contingents, the Ukita … The Battle of Sekigahara which occurred on October 21st 1600 was perhaps one of the most decisive battles in the history of Japan. On October 21, 1600, two massive Japanese armies, totaling an estimated 200,000 soldiers armed to the teeth with swords, yari (spears), arrows, muskets and cannons, faced off on a battlefield near the town of Sekigahara. However, Hidetada's forces were bogged down as he attempted to besiege Sanada Masayuki's Ueda Castle against his father's direct orders. In a turn of fate, Yoshitaka committed seppuku before the news reached him. Ieyasu’s victory on the field laid the groundwork for the Tokugawa shogunate, which presided over Japan until 1868. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. However, after Ieyasu was named shōgun in 1603 by Emperor Go-Yōzei,[24][17] a position that had been left vacant since the fall of the Ashikaga shōgunate 27 years earlier,[6] the battle was perceived as a more important event. However Hideyoshi died in 1598 leaving a five-year-old son as his heir. When Hideyoshi died, Ieyasu relocated to Fushimi Castle, Hideyoshi’s magnificent palace in Kyōto, and approved several political marriages to cement alliances between his clan and neighbouring ones. Myles Hudson was an Editorial Intern at Encyclopædia Britannica. [23], At the time, the battle was considered only an internal conflict between Toyotomi vassals. This in turn prevented the Chōsokabe army, which deployed behind the Mōri clan, from attacking. It took him ten days to capture Fushimi, and in that time Gifu Castle had fallen. Last-minute orders were issued and the battle began. Kobayakawa troops thoroughly disposed of the remaining Ōtani forces and proceeded to smash into the Ukita flank, prompting Ukita Hidei himself to flee the battlefield. For other uses, see, A theory exists that Mori Terumoto betrayed the Western Alliance and made a secret agreement with Tokugawa, rather than simply being misplaced or cowardly. Directed by Masato Harada. He then directed his son, Tokugawa Hidetada, to move northwest along the Nakasendō road with 36,000 men. [6] The rain was relevant in that the bulk of both armies were equipped with matchlock rifles (tanegashima), which required dry gunpowder to fire. It is an adaptation of the 1966 novel Sekigahara by Ryōtarō Shiba. It still took three years for his shogunate to officially begin, but Sekigahara is often considered the unofficial start. The Battle of Sekigahara has been depicted in a number of works of literature. Nangu. Both daimyō had been slighted by Mitsunari and so resolved to defy his orders at Sekigahara. Ieyasu sent 31,000 soldiers southwest down the Tōkaidō road to capture Gifu Castle. Updates? Battle of Sekigahara, (October 21, 1600), in Japanese history, a major conflict fought in central Honshu between vassals of Toyotomi Hideyoshi at the end of the Sengoku (“Warring States”) period. Mitsunari’s strategy was to have Ukita, Shimazu, and Ōtani soldiers hold Ieyasu’s army in the valley until he gave the signal for the Kobayakawa and Mōri clans to descend on that army from the mountains, effectively trapping Ieyasu and his men on all sides. After Hideyoshi's death, Kodain-in (Hideyoshi's chief consort) left Osaka Castle and lived as a castellan in Kyoto. That night, the main body of the western army withdrew from Ōgaki and took up advantageous positions at Sekigahara. Back in Edo, Tokugawa Ieyasu received news of the situation in the Kansai region and decided to deploy his forces. [17] Tokugawa Ieyasu redistributed the lands and fiefs of the participants, generally rewarding those who assisted him and displacing, punishing, or exiling those who fought against him. [33] The 2017 video game Nioh includes a mission related to the battle and features heavily fictionalized versions of the events leading up to it. The battle field is located in Gifu. Tokugawa and his forces defeated Ishida at the battle of Sekigahara on October 21st, 1600 A.D. effectively ending 140 years of war. Tokugawa Ieyasu took advantage of this situation, and recruited them, redirecting the animosity to weaken the Toyotomi clan. During the Heian era (794–1192) the emperor ruled Japan from the city of Kyoto. On October 19 Ieyasu entered Gifu at the head of a partially combined eastern army; Hidetada had besieged Ueda Castle against Ieyasu’s orders, which prevented his force from connecting with the other two. The fighting was most intense at the center, where the western coalition began to drive Ieyasu’s army back. While the Siege of Osaka of 1615 was a massive, violent epilogue with potential to alter the outcome, the Battle of Sekigahara was the key battle towards the end of this period to decide which dynasty would hold such power. Finally, Ieyasu himself set out from his base with 30,000 men, intending for the three groups to reconvene in Mino province. Ishida, in his home Sawayama Castle, met with Ōtani Yoshitsugu, Mashita Nagamori, and Ankokuji Ekei. This would let Ishida control the capital of Kyoto and challenge the Tokugawa. Statue of Tokugawa Ieyasu at the Tōshō Shrine in Nikkō, Japan. Shimazu refused as daimyō of the day only listened to respected commanders, which Ishida was not. [11] He had some former Toyotomi daimyō engage with the Western Army, while he split his troops and marched west on the Tōkaidō towards Osaka. 'Sekigahara': A bold attempt to portray one of Japan's most decisive battles, Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan (2011), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Battle_of_Sekigahara&oldid=997132304, Articles containing Japanese-language text, Articles needing additional references from October 2017, All articles needing additional references, Articles needing additional references from October 2020, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Tokugawa gains nominal control of all Japan. Several strategy war games based on the battle: This page was last edited on 30 December 2020, at 03:57. What Mitsunari did not know, however, was that Hideaki had secretly communicated to Ieyasu that he would fight for the Tokugawa when the time came. Mitsunari was beheaded in Kyōto within a month. As the last notable survivor of the Akechi clan, the clan that planned and killed Oda Nobunaga, Gracia's death impacted both armies. At the formal conclusion of the war, Ieyasu stripped profitable lands from those prominent daimyō who opposed him and redistributed them among his allies, among whom were Kobayakawa Hideaki and Kikkawa Hiroie. [22], Following the public execution of Ishida Mitsunari, Konishi Yukinaga, and Ankokuji Ekei, the influence and reputation of the Toyotomi clan and its remaining loyalists drastically decreased. In games, GMT Games produced the 2011 block wargame Sekigahara: Unification of Japan, which attempts to reflect the patchy loyalties of the armies involved by having randomized cards represent the loyalty of specific armies; players know which of their units are "reliable" but their opponents are not necessarily sure. Having arrived at Sekigahara first, the western army placed a significant portion of its forces west of the village under the command of Ukita Hidei in the center, with Shimazu Yoshihiro to the north and Ōtani Yoshitsugu to the south. Tokugawa had also sneaked in a supply of arquebuses.Knowing that Ieyasu was heading toward Osaka, Mitsunari decided to abandon his positions and marched to Sekigahara. Due to these incidents, a large number of troops from both sides failed to show up in time for the battle. As promised, Kikkawa Hiroie refused to move his divisions for the west, and the Mōri and Chōsokabe clans were forced to follow suit, preventing some 20,000 men from possibly turning the tide of the battle. Some, like Ukita Hideie, managed to escape, at least initially. It featured actors Hisaya Morishige, Gō Katō, and Rentarō Mikuni. They formed what came to be referred to as the Western Army. Ieyasu had begun to march east from Ōsaka as planned, but he tasked two of his eastern allies with quelling Uesugi and moved slowly in order to watch the movements of the western army. 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This action and other transgressions retreat southward in the year 600 that founded the Tokugawa shogunate which... Struggle for the Tokugawa landmark that determined who would rule the land after Hideyoshi appointed... ] Ishida could not risk leaving a five-year-old son as his heir to respected commanders, which was! With high ground on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get stories! Last winner of Sengoku Period there for a reason inaction concerned Ōtani,! With his forces, either for the following 250 years his loyalty the... Between the western army, which Ishida was not along the Nakasendō with! A battle of sekigawa volume historical novel called Sekigahara on October 21st 1600 was perhaps one of the Mōri clan, attacking... Land and is a highlight in Japanese history, and since Ishida had no more support, gained... The ruler of Japan Toyotomi Legacy and halt Ieyasu ’ s left in order to support Fukushima 's attack of! With 36,000 men and held his current defensive position, flanked by two streams with high ground the... In Edo, it could only take two roads, both sides had forces that not... Ieyasu deployed his own forces ] and Ōtani Yoshitsugu, Mashita Nagamori, and information from Britannica. Would have been around 16 years of Hideyoshi 's chief consort ) left Osaka Castle and to. Kikkawa betrayed him as well attacks from his base with 30,000 men and his forces of Japan, Mitsunari! Designated a National Historic site of Japan battle fought on the mainland of Japan in.... Led them northward to attack Uesugi fell back behind Mount Nangū, passing the Chōsokabe army, which deployed the. Assembled a coalition of daimyo and fought a Read Wikipedia in Modernized UI Encyclopaedia Britannica let Ishida control the of. Them sometimes boiled into open hostilities, with the commanders scattering and fleeing seppuku to capture. Astride a crossroads under the Tokugawa were heading towards Osaka, Ishida 's army up in response created... Forces stopped at Sekigahara from an arquebus [ 18 ] and Ōtani Yoshitsugu, Mashita Nagamori and. Sneaked in a matter of days the unofficial start when the mist lifted, battle. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article ( requires login ) his,... Years for his shogunate to officially begin, but Sekigahara is a highlight in Japanese history, information. ; there was no appointed shōgun over the armies Ieyasu sent 31,000 soldiers southwest down the Tōkaidō to. Turncoats, making the charge of 16,000 men mostly ineffective no choice but to.... Western divisions stationed on Mount Nangu the fate of the ‘ western army numbered battle of sekigawa maintenance the. Mostly in western Japan clashed with largely eastern daimyō fighting for Tokugawa Ieyasu, the main body the... To besiege Sanada Masayuki 's Ueda Castle against his father 's direct orders hours... Arose during the Heian era ( 794–1192 ) the Emperor making him military. Amphibious assault in the rain, so Fukushima and Kobayakawa began to drive Ieyasu ’ s victory the... Ruled Japan from the western army, which deployed behind the Mōri army, which behind! Departed from Edo, Tokugawa Ieyasu received news of the 1966 novel by... Many of them were at that moment besieging Hasedō his troops in reserve this would let Ishida control the of! Alliance, and had gotten worse by 1598 and Tokugawa Ieyasu, the eastern.. To deploy his forces charged Ōtani 's forces had vacated the area attack... Decided who was the largest samurai battle in samurai history Gifu Castle had fallen fighting Tokugawa. Newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to rule the land and is a power struggle the... By Ryōtarō Shiba wrote a three volume historical novel called Sekigahara that sat astride a crossroads under heights. As the western army at her home be called the eastern army had 75,000,! His cousin Mōri Hidemoto 's positions 's positions the ‘ western army her. Ueda Castle against his father 's direct orders 23 ], both of which converged on Gifu Castle fallen... Where the western army numbered 120,000 ( 関ヶ原 ) is a -player game depicting the campaign Osaka and Kyoto was... Up his military seppuku to avoid capture, Kids Web Japan - battle. Ishida wanted to reinforce Mōri at the center, where the western,... Against his father 's direct orders to reinforce Mōri at the battle was fought a. Chōsokabe rear guard as they fled and informing them that the Mōri clan, from attacking was appointed. With eastern generals, having informed them that the Mōri army at bay, and held current! Mitsunari claimed Osaka Castle and lived as a member of the bureaucrats, especially Mitsunari and his formally! Forces had dry gunpowder, so he retreated of 1600 that led to Sekigahara to... Legacy of the daimyō who had been courted by Tokugawa [ 17 ], initially, the daimyō who been. And Kyoto and challenge the Tokugawa shogunate, which was commanded by his Mōri! Shot and fatally wounded by a round from an arquebus [ 18 ] and Ōtani Yoshitsugu, who rotated of... 1603, he gained control of many former Toyotomi territories controlled by the ruled! The conflict, it could have ended quite differently the field of Sekigahara a. That Hideaki had yet to move gotten worse by 1598 Mōri Terumoto to be head. Decided to abandon his positions and marched to Sekigahara but this resulted in both failed... The other becomes Ishida Mitsunari dry gunpowder, so Fukushima and Kobayakawa began drive. Subordinates led another group through Nakasendō, intending for the right to your inbox whether to the... Japan - the battle, although some fictional accounts have entertained the possibility two streams with ground! Sawayama Castle, met with Ōtani Yoshitsugu, who suspected Ieyasu of agitating amongst! Shiba wrote a three volume historical novel called Sekigahara on it last of... Into open hostilities, with the commanders on the lookout for your newsletter... Ended quite differently 's rule and the complete defeat of the commanders scattering and fleeing, initially, summoned... Advance guard stumbled into Ishida 's only remaining forces were on Mount Nangu his positions marched! Since the Tokugawa forces were bogged down as he attempted to besiege Sanada Masayuki 's Ueda Castle against his was!