Kamata Masakane


Kamata Clan


Satsuma Province

Lifespan:  15xx to 7/18 of Tenshō 20 (1592)

Other Names:  Hitoya-zaemon

Rank:  bushō

Clan:  Kamata

Lord:  Shimazu Toshihisa

Kamata Masakane served as a bushō during the Azuchi-Momoyama period.  He was a retainer of the Shimazu clan of Satsuma Province.

Masakane served as a direct retainer of Shimazu Toshihisa, the next younger brother of Shimazu Yoshihisa, a sengoku daimyō and the sixteenth head of the Shimazu clan.  After Toyotomi Hideyoshi dispatched an army for the Pacification of Kyūshū, in 1587, Masakane was assigned to his son-in-law, Shimazu Tadachika, to serve in the Battle of Nejirozaka.  The Shimazu army, however, suffered an overwhelming defeat while Tadachika incurred injuries after being shot by an arquebus.  After Tadachika requested Masakane to give him some water, Masakane plucked an unripe plum to offer him instead, but after biting once on the plum, Tadachika died.  Masakane attended to his body after his death.  In the sixth month of the same year, while serving as a messenger for Toshihisa, Masakane met Hideyoshi and received a two-layered kimono as a gift.

In 1592, for unknown reasons, Masakane was ordered into confinement.  Later, Toshihisa was accused of conspiring with the ringleaders of the Umekita Uprising and ordered to commit seppuku.  Thereafter, Masakane left his site of confinement and followed Toshihisa, rushing to Ryū-ga-mizu in the village of Wakimoto.  He then pleaded for a pardon from Toshihisa and, after being acknowledged, joined 26 others to martyr themselves.

His decendants became local samurai in Tōgō.