Lifespan: Tenshō 15 (1587) to 3/26 of Meireki 2 (1656)
Title: Junior Fifth Rank (Lower) and Chief of the Weaving Office
Domain: lord of Shinano-Suwa, Shimotuske-Mibu, Bungo-Funai
Lord: Toyotomi Hideyori → Tokugawa Ieyasu → Tokugawa Hidetada → Tokugawa Iemitsu
Father: Hineno Takayoshi
Mother: Daughter of Toda Tadashige
Siblings: Yoshiaki, Takatsugu, 高当, Seijuin (second wife of Igi Tadatsugu), sister (formal wife of Shibata Katsumasa)
Wife: Jishōin (daughter of Matsudaira Kazunari)
Children: Yoshikatsu, daughter (wife of Nose Yoritaka)
Hineno Yoshiaki served as a daimyō during the Azuchi-Momoyama and early Edo periods. Yoshiaki served as the lord of domains in three provinces: The Suwa domain in Shinano, the Mibu domain in Shimotsuke, and the Funai domain in Bungo.
In 1587, Yoshiaki was born as the eldest son of Hineno Takayoshi. He was born as Hiramatsu Castle in Ōmi Province.
In the sixth month of 1600, Takayoshi suddenly died from illness so Yoshiaki inherited the Shinano-Suwa domain with a fief of 27,000 koku. At the Battle of Sekigahara, Yoshiaki abided by the final wishes of his father and joined the Eastern Army. For the Conquest of Aizu, he served in the army of Tokugawa Hidetada and headed toward Utsunomiya in Shimotsuke. Later, he was assigned to prepare defenses against Sanada Masayuki, the lord of Ueda Castle in Shinano aligned with the Western Army.
In 1601, Yoshiaki met Tokugawa Ieyasu for the first time and received the name of Yoshiaki. Yoshiaki’s grandfather, Hineno Hironari, signed with the Western Army during the Battle of Sekigahara. Owing to the fallout from Hironari being on the losing side of the war, as well as his youth, Yoshiaki was assigned to the Shimotsuke-Mibu domain with a reduced fief of 12,000 (or 15,000) koku.
In 1614, at the Winter Campaign of the Siege of Ōsaka, Yoshiaki served meritoriously on behalf of the Tokugawa. Thereafter, he worked on behalf of the Edo bakufu including upon orders to serve as a deputy magistrate for the construction of the Nikkō-Tōshō Shrine. In recognition of his loyal effort, Yoshiaki was transferred to Funai in Bungo Province, receiving a larger fief of 20,000 koku.
At the time that he assumed his role as the lord of the Funai domain, the territory in the domain had been subject to recurring drought and flooding so he actively engaged in civil affairs including construction inside and outside the castle, repairs to temples and shrines, and excavation projects.
Beginning in 1641, for a period of three years, witnessed an event known as the Great Famine of Kanei. Many residents including in the Funai domain starved. Unable to allow the event to pass without a response, Yoshiaki built a series if aqueducts including the Chōhō and Uebuchi aqueducts in 1648, the Eihō aqueduct in 1649, and the Hase aqueduct in 1650. For having provided irrigation to several hundred hectares of farmland, Yoshiaki was adored as a benevolent lord. An approximately 16-kilometer canal flowing from the city of Yufu to the city of Ōita in Ōita Prefecture is to this day called the Hase River.
Meanwhile, Yoshiaki was known for strictly enforcing the laws so, as a result, was feared by local residents, but, owing to their gratefulness for the Hase aqueduct, he continues to be honored by the residents every year.
In his position as the lord of the Funai domain, Yoshiaki was also charged with looking after Matsudaira Tadanao. Owing to dissatisfaction with the lack of recognition provided for his service during the Siege of Ōsaka, Tadanao had resorted to acts of violence and, as a result, was ordered by Tokugawa Hidetada (the second shōgun of the Edo bakufu) to be confined to the Funai domain in Bungo. After the end of his confinement, the bakufu continued to fear Tadanao so ordered Yoshiaki to watch him.
The Shimabara Rebellion broke-out in 1637 while Yoshiaki was headed from the Funai domain in Bungo toward Edo for service to the bakufu under an Edo-period policy requiring daimyō to alternate their time between the home province and Edo. Upon urgent orders from the bakufu, Yoshiaki returned to Funai. In 1638, he received news that Itakura Shigemasa (the lord of the Fukōzu domain in Mikawa who was serving as the commanding general of the army to suppress the rebellion) had been killed in action. Thereafter, Yoshiaki served with the army to halt the rebellion. Subsequently, he received orders from Tokugawa Iemitsu (the third shōgun) to return to Bungo to watch-over Matsudaira Tadanao so he returned to his domain again. In 1646, he was ordered to arrest Christians in Nagasaki.
On 3/26 of Meireki 2 (1656), Yoshiaki died. His lineal heir, Yoshikatsu, preceded him in death in 1645, so, just before his death, he made a request to the bakufu that Takahide, the eldest son of Yoshishige (who, in turn, was the son of Yoshiaki’s younger brother, 高当) be adopted as his successor to ensure continuity of the family. This was initially permitted, but a disturbance erupted among the retainers on grounds that the adopted son was not of the same lineage. After the death of Yoshiaki, on 4/4, Takahide’s candidacy as his adopted heir was canceled so the status of the Hineno as a daimyō family came to an end. Thereafter, members of the family served as hatamoto, or retainers of the domain.
In the Funai domain, Matsudaira Tadaaki, the lord of the Bungo-Takamatsu domain of the Ogyū-Matsudaira family (and son of a sibling of Yoshiaki’s formal wife) entered the domain on 2/24 of Meireki 4 (1658) with a fief of 22,200 koku.