Takeda Sukenobu

武田助信

Takeda Clan

Bushō

Inaba Province

Lifespan:  Eiroku 4 (1561) to Shōhō 3 (1646)

Name Changes:  Tokujūmaru → Sukenobu → Hisadake

Other Names:  Genzaburō, Tarōemon

Rank:  bushō

Title:  Lieutenant of Outer Palace Guards of the Right Division

Bakufu:  Edo

Domain:  Tajima-Muraoka

Clan:  Inaba-Takeda

Lord:  Nanjō Mototsugu → Toyotomi Hideyoshi → Mōri Hidekane → Yamana Toyokuni

Father:  Takeda Takanobu

Siblings:  Matatarō, Yojūrō, Sukenobu

Children:  Tarōemon

Takeda Sukenobu served as a bushō during the Azuchi-Momoyama and early Edo periods.

In 1561, Sukenobu was born as the son of Takeda Takanobu, a guest commander of the Inaba-Yamana clan.  The details of Sukenobu’s childhood are unknown.  In the eighth month of 1575, an individual named Takeda Tokujūmaru who received recognition of his rights to the headship of the clan from Kobayakawa Takakage is deemed to be Sukenobu.

In the fifth month of 1576, Sukenobu’s father, Takanobu, was murdered by Yamana Toyokuni.  In the wake of the killing, a senior retainer named Saigō Inaba-no-kami enabled Sukenobu to be harbored in the residence of Ōbatake Heizaemon, the chief priest of the Matsugami Shrine in the village of Matsugami in the Takakusa District of Inaba Province.  After residing underground for one-half year, Nanjō Mototsugu of Hōki Province learned of his situation and brought Sukenobu to reside with the Nanjō clan.  Through an introduction by the Nanjō clan, Sukenobu met Toyotomi Hideyoshi and was ordered to guard Shikano Castle.  On this occasion, Sukenobu received a samonji sword from Hideyoshi.  In 1580, Sukenobu supported the Nanjō clan, leading over 500 soldiers in the Battle of Nagōta and Hasegawa.  Sukenobu, however, was alienated by Kamei Korenori who was also on duty at Shikano Castle and was the target of a scheme resulting in his ouster from the castle.  He then became a wandering samurai again and was later engaged by Mōri Hidekane and stayed in Kurume in Chikugo Province.

In 1601, Sukenobu served Yamana Toyokuni, the lord of the Tajima-Muraoka domain, for a fief of 200 koku.  When Sukenobu was initially invited by Toyokuni to serve him, he was reluctant owing to the fact that Toyokuni had murdered his father but was later moved by Toyokuni’s impassioned plea and decided to serve.  At this time, he changed his name to Tarōemon and, after entering the priesthood, adopted the monk’s name of Hisadake.  He died in 1646 at the age of eighty-six.

Sukenobu’s descendants served the Yamana clan until the Meiji Restoration.  In a historical account of Inaba, Takeda Tarōemon is identified as the third-generation head of the Tajima-Takeda family and from the era of Sukenobu, the name of Tarōemon was used for generations.