Itohime

糸姫

Kuroda Clan

Wife of Kuroda Nagamasa

Awa Province

Itohime was a woman who lived from the Azuchi-Momoyama to early Edo periods.  She was a daughter of Hachisuka Masakatsu and the formal wife of Kuroda Nagamasa, the first head of the Fukuoka domain.

In 1571, Itohime was born as the daughter of Hachisuka Masakatsu, a retainer of Hashiba Hideyoshi (later known as Toyotomi Hideyoshi).  She was born in Owari Province (or possibly in Ōsaka).  Her mother was Hakuun-in, the daughter of Torii Etchū-no-kami.  Hachisuka Iemasa was her older brother of a different mother and her older sister was Narahime (the formal wife of Kashima Nagamasa).

In 1584, Itohime married Kuroda Nagamasa, the son of Kuroda Kanbei – a retainer of Hideyoshi.  There is also an unconfirmed theory that she was adopted by Toyotomi Hideyoshi.  In 1597, she bore a daughter named Kikuko who later became the wife of Inoue Yōmei, the son of Inoue Yukifusa (a retainer of the Kuroda family).

In 1600, just prior to the Battle of Sekigahara, she was forced to separate from her husband so that, upon the request of Tokugawa Ieyasu, Nagamasa wed an adopted daughter of Ieyasu named Eihime (the natural daughter of Hoshina Masanao) as his formal wife in a political marriage.  This separation from Itohime resulted in a break between the daimyō of the Kuroda and Hachisuka families that lasted for the proceeding 127 years until the middle of the Edo period.

After the separation, Itohime resided in the territory of the Hachisuka family in Awa Province, and died in 1645.  She was interred at the Rinkō Temple on Mount Tōkei in Awa.

The Hachisuka and Kuroda families finally reconciled in 1727 through Hachisuka Tsunanori (the fifth head of the Awa-Tokushima domain) and Kuroda Nobumasa (the fifth head of the Chikuzen-Fukuoka domain).