Asonuma Hirohide


Asonuma Clan


Aki Province

Lifespan:  Unknown to 11/29 of Keichō 2 (1597)

Rank:  bushō

Title:  Junior Assistant Minister of Central Affairs

Clan:  Asonuma branch of the Fujiwara-Ashikaga clan

Lord:  Ōuchi Yoshitaka → Mōri Motonari → Mōri Terumoto

Father:  Asonuma Hirohide

Siblings:  Takasato, Hirohide, sister (wife of Amano Motosada)

Wife:  Daughter of 田総元里

Children:  Motohide, Narisato, daughter (second wife of Mōri Motomasa), daughter (wife of Katsura Motonobu)

Asonuma Hirohide served as a bushō during the Sengoku and Azuchi-Momoyama periods.  Hirohide was the head the Asonuma clan, a kokujin family based at the Senoarayama manor in the Aki District of Aki Province.  He served as the lord of Tokonoyama Castle.  The Asonuma were first affiliated with the Ōuchi clan and, later, as retainers of the Mōri clan.

During the Sengoku period, the Asonuma clan was affiliated with the Ōuchi clan but, around 1523, separated from the Ōuchi and allied with the Amago.  However, after being attacked by Sue Okifusa, a senior retainer of the Ōuchi, in 1527, the clan surrendered and once again became subordinate to the Ōuchi.

In 1551, after Ōuchi Yoshitaka was killed at the Tainei Temple Incident, in 1552, Mōri Motonari attacked Asonuma Takasato (Hirohide’s older brother) at Tokonoyama Castle at the Senoarayama manor.  The Asonuma then associated with the Mōri.  At this time, Takasato retired and Hirohide took over responsibility for the family.  That same year, Hirohide participated in an attack on Miya Kō-on at Shikawa-takayama Castle in Bingo Province.

Thereafter, Hirohide joined in the Battle of Itsukushima and the Subjugation of Bōchō (Suō and Nagato provinces).  In 1569, at the Battle of Tachibana Castle, Hirohide served with reinforcements led by Takahashi Akitane to sever the route of retreat for the Ōtomo army at the Hōman Castle.  Hirohide captured the head of an enemy at both the attack on Ushio Castle on 4/17 of 1570, and at the attack on Kuniyoshi Castle in Bitchū on 1/1 of 1575.

However, owing to events including pressure from Motoyori for delay in his deployment for the Izumo Expedition in 1570 and his own dissatisfaction at public levies imposed by the Mōri clan, in 1552, Hirohide maintained a degree of autonomy despite being affiliated with the Mōri.

Hirohide also had a relationship with the Muromachi bakufu.  On 2/20 of 1560, through the mediation of Ashikaga Yoshiteru (the thirteenth shōgun), Hirohide was bestowed by the Imperial court with the position of Junior Assistant Minister of Central Affairs.  Owing to this history, in 1588, Hirohide contributed funds for the twenty-fifth anniversary of the death of Yoshiteru the following year and received a letter of thanks from Makishima Akimitsu, Iio Akitsura, and Oda Nobuhide.

Hirohide died on 11/29 of 1598.