Mibu Yoshitake


Mibu Clan


Shimotsuke Province

Lifespan:  Tenbun 21 (1552) to 7/8 of Tenshō 18 (1590)

Name Changes:  Ujikatsu (childhood) → Yoshikatsu

Rank:  bushō

Clan:  Mibu

Lord:  Shimotsuke-Utsunomiya clan → Satake Yoshishige → Gohōjō clan

Father:  Mibu Tsunatake

Siblings:  Yoshitake, Tsuruko (wife of Minagawa Hiroteru)

Wife: [Formal] Jishōinden 源室宗本

Children:  Isekame (wife of Isshiki Uhyōe-no-jō)

Mibu Yoshitake served as a bushō during the Sengoku and Azuchi-Momoyama periods.  He was a retainer of the Shimotsuke-Utsunomiya and the Gohōjō clans.  Yoshitake was the fifth and final head of the Mibu clan.

In 1552, Yoshitake was born as the son of Mibu Tsunatake, a retainer of the Shimotsuke-Utsunomiya and the fourth head of the Mibu clan.  

Amidst an expansion of the influence of the Gohōjō clan, Yoshitake’s father, Tsunatake, devised plans to become independent of the Utsunomiya but Tsunatake’s uncle, Mibu Kanetake, remained unwaveringly loyal to the Utsunomiya so came into conflict with Tsunatake.  In 1576, Tsunatake was deceived by Kanetake and Haga Takasada and assassinated at the Tenman Shrine at Kanuma Castle, after which Kanetake became the lord of the main base of the Mibu clan at Kanuma Castle.  That same year, Kanetake proceeded to attack Yoshitake where he had holed-up at Mibu Castle but Yoshitake prevailed while Kanetake was murdered.

During a period of expansion of the influence of Satake Yoshishige, Yoshitake temporarily served under their command to fight against the Gohōjō clan.  In the twelfth month of 1585, Yoshitake defected to the Hōjō clan after rejecting efforts by Yūki Harutomo to persuade him not to do so.  Riding their momentum, the Hōjō army attacked Utsunomiya and Taki castles.  As a result, the following year, Yoshitake incurred attacks by the Satake and Utsunomiya clans.

On 10/9 of Tenshō 15 (1587), Yoshitake sent a letter to the Oushū-Naganuma clan of southern Aizu regarding the tense political situation in the area of Nikkōsan.  The opposing Utsunomiya clan controlled Kuragasaki Castle situated at a strategic transit point so Yoshitake felt a military threat, notified the Gohōjō, and received a promise for the dispatch of forces by the Gohōjō.

In a bid to become independent, Yoshitake followed after his father by joining with the Gohōjō and resisted against the Utsunomiya.  In 1590, during the Conquest of Odawara led by Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Yoshitake allied with the Gohōjō and holed-up in Odawara Castle but died of illness just before the fall of the castle to the Toyotomi army.

Yoshitake only had a daughter, Isekame, and without a son to serve as his successor, the Mibu clan came to an end.  After the death of Yoshitake, Isekame wed a retainer of the Mibu clan named Isshiki Uhyōe-no-jō.