Matsudaira Nobutada




Mikawa Province

Lifespan:  Entoku 2 (1490) to 7/27 of Kyōroku 4 (1531)

Other Names:  Takechiyo (childhood), 太雲

Rank:  bushō

Title:  Junior Fifth Rank (Lower), Governor of Echizen, 左近蔵人佐

Family:  Anjō-Matsudaira

Father:  Matsudaira Nagachika (Dōetsu)

Mother:  月空浄雲大姉 (Matsudaira clan ?)

Siblings:  Nobutada, Chikamori, Nobusada, Yoshiharu, Toshinaga

Wife: [Formal] Iwakura-dono 正珊光仲 (daughter of Ōkawachi MItsushige); [Second] Older sister of Mizuno Tadamasa

Children:  Kiyoyasu, Nobutaka, Yasutaka, Hisa (wife of Suzuki Shigenao), Tōhime (wife of Ōhama Michiba), Yasuku-dono (wife of a member of the Shimada clan), Seto-no-Ōfusa (wife of Kira Mochihiro)

Matsudaira Nobutada served as a bushō during the Sengoku period.  Nobutada was the second head of the Anjō-Matsudaira family and the great-grandfather of Tokugawa Ieyasu.

After inheriting the headship of the clan, Nobutada was unable to exercise control over the members of the family and the retainers.  Early on, he was forced into retirement and transferred headship of the clan to his lineal heir, Matsudaira Kiyoyasu.  There are various theories regarding his early retirement.  According to an account of Mikawa written by Ōkubo Tadataka, a bushō living from the Sengoku to early Edo periods, one group of family members and retainers sought to respect the will of his father, Matsudaira Dōetsu (Nagachika), to transfer headship of the clan to his eldest son, Nobutada, and compensate for deficiencies in the capabilities of their lord by enlisting capable retainers to support him.  Rather than support the inept Nobutada, an opposing faction held the view that the second son, Matsudaira Nobusada, should succeed Dōetsu.  The splitting of the clan into two factions caused tensions and, amidst the threat of another invasion by the Imagawa clan, it became necessary to avoid a decisive conflict between the family members and retainers in each faction.

Dōetsu may, in fact, have favored Nobusada while tensions arose between Dōetsu and the incapable Nobutada.  Under one theory, after the Battle of Idano, when the Anjō-Matsudaira took control of the territory of the decimated Iwatsu-Matsudaira, there was dissatisfaction with the rewards given for the military efforts.  Alternatively, after the Battle of Idano, when the Anjō-Matsudaira replaced the Iwatsu-Matsudaira and rose to prominence as the head family of the clan, friction arose among members of the clan.

Nobutada received one of the characters in his name from Kira Yoshinobu of the Mikawa-Kira clan and adopted the name of Nobutada.

Around the eighth month of 1503, owing to the retirement of his father, Matsudaira Nagachika, Nobutada is surmised to have succeeded him as the head of the clan, but Nagachika continued to wield the real authority.  Soon after inheriting the role, in the seventh month of 1506, Imagawa Ujichika commenced an invasion of Mikawa and, in 1508, the territory of the Matsudaira in western Mikawa was also subject to attack.  Ise Moritoki led a large Imagawa army to lay siege to Iwatsu Castle, the base of the Iwatsu-Matsudaira family.  Under the command of his father, Dōetsu, the Anjō-Matsudaira army engaged in a desperate battle in Idano in the environs of Iwatsu, barely managing to repel the Imagawa army.  The series of events covering the Battle of Imahashi in eastern Mikawa to the Battle of Idano in western Mikawa are known as the Eishō Mikawa Conflict.

There are no records of Nobutada’s military command or achievements in regard to battles against the Imagawa army.  According to the accounts of Mikawa written by Ōkubo Tadanori, Nobutada was incapable as a leader.  He is characterized as a stubborn and foolish individual lacking the qualities expected of the head of the clan, namely, military prowess, affection, and pity.  Consequently, retainers, in addition to peasants and other citizens shuddered in fear of him, while members of the Matsudaira clan and their servants refused to follow him, including many who did not come to the castle to work.  There was also plotting for a rebellion.  Nobutada himself discovered this in advance and killed the ringleaders, but it did not resolve the situation.

In 1523, at a meeting among members of the family, decisions were made to have Nobutada retire and transfer headship of the clan to his lineal heir, Kiyoyasu.  When Sakai Tadanao, a chief retainer, informed Nobutada of the decisions of the group, Nobutada accepted the plan and transferred the headship to Kiyoyasu.  At the age of thirty-four, he retired and entered the priesthood at the Shōmyō Temple in the Ōhama township in the Hasu District of Mikawa.  The timing of the transfer of headship is authenticated in a document issued by Kiyoyasu dated 8/12 of Daiei 3 (1523).  Thereafter, Nobutada, together with his father, Dōetsu (who lived a long life), provided support to the young Kiyoyasu.

From the era of Nobutada, based on donation certificates to temples in Iwatsu and Taki, it can be ascertained that after the decimation of the Iwatsu-Matsudaira family following an offensive by the Imagawa, the Anjō-Matsudaira replaced them as the lead family of the Matsudaira clan.

In the seventh month of Kyōroku 4 (1531), Nobutada died in his place of retirement in the Ōhama township.