Haramiishi Motoyasu


Haramiishi Clan


Tōtōmi Province

Lifespan:  15xx to 3/23 Tenshō 9 (1581)

Other Names:  Tōroku, Shujin

Rank:  bushō

Titles:  Izumi-no-kami, Mondo-no-suke (self-appointed)

Clan:  Haramiishi

Lord:  Imagawa clan → Takeda clan

Father:  Haramiishi Mitsunao

Children:  Motoshige

Haramiisihi Motoyasu served as a bushō during the Sengoku and Azuchi-Momoyama periods.  He was a retainer of the Imagawa and Takeda clans.

Motoyasu was born as the son of Haramiishi Mitsunao, a retainer of the Imagawa.  The Haramiishi were an illegitimate branch of the Hara clan based in the Harada manor in Tōtōmi Province.  The clan became retainers of the Imagawa in the era of Motoyasu’s grandfather, Haramiishi Yukishige.

First, he served the Imagawa clan.  Motoyasu was, along with Asahina Nobuoki and Okabe Motonobu, one of the retainers of the Imagawa based outside of Suruga Province.  In 1568, owing to the Invasion of Suruga by Takeda Shingen, Motoyasu separated from the Imagawa clan and became a retainer of the Takeda.  On 3/22 of Tenshō 9 (1581), after the Second Siege of Takatenjin Castle during an invasion by the Tokugawa clan of Mikawa Province, Motoyasu was captured and on 3/23, forced to commit seppuku.

Among those who surrendered, Motoyasu was the only one ordered to commit seppuku.  Rather than face in a westward direction where paradise was generally believed to exist, he turned his head south when attempting to cut himself, and even when the direction was pointed out, did not change.

He was succeeded by his son, Haramiishi Motoshige, a retainer of the Tosa-Yamauchi clan.


While a retainer of the Imagawa, Motoyasu resided next to the home where the young Tokugawa Ieyasu was kept as a hostage by the Imagawa.  Ieyasu enjoyed falconry, and prey and droppings from the birds that he released fell on the Haramiishi residence, causing Motoyasu to frequently complain.  Resentful of the treatment, several decades later, Ieyasu had him commit seppuku.