Aochi Shigetsuna


Aochi Clan


Ōmi Province

Lifespan: 15xx to 9/20 of Genki 1 (1570)

Rank:  bushō

Title:  Governor of Suruga

Clan:  Gamō → Aochi

Lord:  Rokkaku Yoshiharu → Oda Nobunaga

Father:  Gamō Sadahide

Mother:  Mabuchi clan

Siblings:  Gamō Katahide, Shigetsuna, Ogura Sanetaka, sister (wife of Seki Morinobu), sister (wife of Kanbe Tomomori)

Children:  Mototaka

Aochi Shigetsuna was the second son of Uragami Sadahide.  His mother was from the Mabuchi clan so he became an adopted son of Aochi Nagatsuna, a kokujin from Ōmi Province, relatives of the Mabuchi.  Shigetsuna received the Court title of Governor of Suruga, known as Suruga-no-kami.  Kami was designated the highest of a four-level rank for kokushi, or officials serving as local administrators on behalf of the central authorities in Kyōto.

Shigetsuna first served as a retainer for the Rokkaku clan.  In 1563, he led a force of over 1500 mounted soldiers.  In the Rokkaku shikimoku, he is identified in the top twenty of clan members.  He surrendered at the time of Oda Nobunaga‘s march upon Kyōto in 1568.  Thereafter, he joined his brother, Uragami Katahide, as retainers of the Oda to attack the Kitabatake clan in Ise Province. 

Together with Mori Yorinari and Oda Nobuharu, Shigetsuna attempted to defend Usayama Castle against the allied forces of the Azai and Asakura in Settsu Province.  After as many as 30,000 Azai and Asakura forces advanced upon Sakamoto, a village in a strategic location on the route to the castle, Mori Yorinari led 1000 men down from Usayama Castle and clashed with the advancing forces on the edge of the village.  In the early stages of the hostilities, Yorinari and his men made progress after killing several soldiers from the large contingent. However, upon request of Kennyo, the high priest of the Ishiyama-Hongan Temple, monk warriors from the Enryaku Temple located on Mount Hiei in Ōtsu joined the allied forces of the Azai and the Asakura. This further swelled the size of the army which launched another assault.  Yorinari valiantly repelled an attack led by Asakura Kageakira, but his forces disintegrated after incurring a pincer attack by several thousand Azai soldiers and warriors while confronting more forces from the main contingent under Azai Nagamasa including battalions led by Yamazaki Yoshiie and Ahaga Saburō.  As a result, Shigetsuna, together with Mori Yorinari and Oda Nobuharu, were killed in battle.