Tōyama Naokage


Tōyama Clan


Mino Province

Lifespan:  Unknown to 3/13 of Tenbun 2 (1533)

Other Names:  Shirōzaemon (common)

Rank:  bushō

Title:  Assistant Captain of the Imperial Guards, Governor of Kaga, Governor of Tanba

Clan:  Tōyama

Lord:  Hōjō Sōun → Hōjō Ujitsuna

Father:  Tōyama Kageyasu

Children:  Tsunakage, Yasumitsu, Myōkini (wife of Suwabe Sadakatsu)

Tōyama Naokage served as a bushō during the Sengoku period.  He was a retainer of the Gohōjō clan.  His great-grandson carried the same name and was also known as Saemon-no-taifu.

Naokage was born as the eldest son of Tōyama Kageyasu of the Akechi-Tōyama clan based in the Ena District of Mino Province.

The Tōyama were members of the Katō clan descended from Fujiwara no Toshihito, a noble and bushō from the early Heian period.  Their homeland was in the Tōyama manor in Mino.  Initially, the Tōyama served the Muromachi bakufu as retainers of Ashikaga Yoshiki (the tenth shōgun also known as Ashikaga Yoshitane) who had deep ties to Mino and the Mino-Toki clan.  The Tōyama may have been members of the hōkōshū – the military organ under the direct jurisdiction of the shōgun.  Around this time, Naokage is deemed to have developed close relations with Ise Shinkurō (later known as Hōjō Sōun) who was also serving the bakufu as a member of the mōshitsugishū, persons responsible for communications between the Imperial Court, the shōgun, and daimyō.  Similar to the Tōyama clan, the Matsuda and Ise clans came from the capital to serve important roles in the Kantō and are surmised to have had ties with retainers of the Gohōjō clan at this time.

After Sōun departed the capital in an effort to intervene in an internal conflict in the Imagawa clan of Suruga Province, Naokage continued to serve the bakufu.  Later, as an outcome of an event known as the Meiō Political Incident, Ashikaga Yoshiki was ousted in a coup orchestrated by Hosokawa Masamoto and chaos ensued in the capital.  Sōun proceeded to pacify Izu Province and Naokage is deemed to have left Kyōto and joined in the pacification campaign.  Around 1521, Naokage transferred his territory and Akechi Castle to relatives, departed, and, as a leader of 180 officers and soldiers, joined the command of Hōjō Sōun, but the details are uncertain.

In the first month of 1506, a donation by Naokage to a temple is the first time he appears in records in the Kantō.  The seal on this document resembles the seal of Sōun, suggesting that Naokage had become a retainer of Sōun.  Thereafter, based on many licenses issued to shrines and temples, he leveraged his experience with the bakufu to perform administrative work on behalf of the Hōjō family.

In the first month of 1524, after Hōjō Ujitsuna captured the base of the Ōgigayatsu-Uesugi family at Edo Castle in Musashi Province, Naokage became the chamberlain, although there is a theory that another individual served in this role.  Naokage is considered to have governed this area, citing a written pledge addressed to Ashikaga Takamoto, the Koga kubō, asserting that the Hōjō clan would not oppose him.  In other words, Naokage was in a position to represent the Hōjō with respect to the authority of the Koga kubō.

Thereafter, Naokage served as a messenger of the family including to Nagao Tamekage, the deputy military governor of Echigo Province.  When the Uesugi sought a settlement with Nagao Norinaga, Naokage served as a messenger and in the capacity of a bureaucrat of the Hōjō clan.  There were no notable military achievements, but, in 1529, he deployed to Chichibu.  In the first month of 1530, he deployed in an attempt to attack from the rear the forces of Uesugi Tomooki of Kawagoe Castle, an enemy of the Hōjō clan.  A field battle ensued against Uesugi forces who came to intercept them, resulting in a defeat for Naokage.  Riding the momentum of victory, the Uesugi forces proceeded to capture Ozawa and Setagaya castles.  Five days later, the Uesugi attacked Edo Castle and burned down some of the facilities.

On 3/13 of Tenbun 2 (1533), Naokage died.  The Tōyama clan and role as the chamberlain of Edo Castle was inherited by his eldest son, Tōyama Tsunakage.

Within the Gohōjō (a sengoku daimyō ), the Tōyama were among those families serving as senior retainers including the Daidōji, the Tame, the Araki, the Yamanaka, the Arakawa, the Satake, and the Matsuda.  The Tōyama were also counted among the twenty families of the Izu group and known, along with the Matsuda and Daidōji, as one of the three families of chief retainers.