Online dictionary of history and traditions in Japan: Mizuno Tadakuni,Mochi,Mogami Tokunai,Momo no sekku,Momotaro,Mononobe family,Motoori Norinaga,Mouri Motonari,Muramasa,Muromachi period

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Mizuno Tadakuni

mizunotadakuni
alternative words: Tadakuni Mizuno
keywords: famous person, statesman
related topics: Roju , Edo shogunate , Daimyo , Hatamoto , Tenpo reform
related web sites: http://homepage1.nifty.com/jshoda/essays/essays49.htm , http://ww1.tiki.ne.jp/~i-mitu/tenpounokai.htm
explanation: Born in 1794 as a son of daimyo of northern Kyushu. An ambitious young man, he was first appointed Sojaban (responsible of shogun's protocol) in 1814 then climbed all the rungs of Edo shogunate to become finally roju in 1834. In order to suppress the budget deficit, he launched Tenpo reform with 12th shugun Tokugawa Ieyoshi. He tried to concentrate shogun's land around Edo (Agechirei) but it provoked a strong opposition among hatamoto and daimyo and forced him to resign roju. He died in 1851.

Mochi

mochi omochi
alternative words: Omochi, Rice cake
keywords: food
related topics: New year , Senbei , Kagami mochi , Ozoni , Wagashi
related web sites: http://www.asahi-net.or.jp/~bn9m-smd/ , http://www.asahi-net.or.jp/~nr8c-ab/afjptukiusagi.htm , http://www.sgm.co.jp/conts/club/tei/garage/0001/0001.htm
explanation: The history if "mochi" is old as rice culture itself. It consists to strike in a mortar for several minutes steamed mochigome (highly glutinous rice) then spread to a shelf. Soon it will be harden and fit to a conservation. In order to eat it, it will be cut off to small pieces (about 5 cm) and be grilled or boiled in a soup with vegetables (ozoni). The latter is especially tasted during a new year celebration. Mochi is also an essential ingredient of Japanese cakes (wagashi) such as senbei.

Mogami Tokunai

mogamitokunai
alternative words: Tokunai Mogami
keywords: explorer, famous person, northern territory
related topics: Edo shogunate , Ezochi , Honda Toshiaki
related web sites: http://www.marimo.or.jp/~nmcinfo/mugenko/p05/P043_1.htm
explanation: Explorer of Ezochi, actual Hokkaido, Sakhalin and Kuril, at the end of Edo period. Born in 1754 in Yamagata prefecture, he learned first astronomy and surveying technique at Tokyo from a mathematician, Honda Toshiaki. Engaged by Edo shogunate instead of Toshiaki, he explored different parts of Ezochi, especially south Kuril (1786) and south Sakhalin (1792). Knowing Ainu and Russian languages, he gave good advises about Ezochi to Edo shogunate. He died in 1836.

Momo no sekku

momonosekku hinamatsuri hinanosekku jyoushinosekku sanngatsunosekku
alternative words: Momono sekku, Joshi no sekku, Sangatsu no sekku, Sangatsuno sekku, Hinamatsuri, Hina matsuri, Girl's day, Doll festival
keywords: festival
related topics: Sekku , Tango no sekku , Edo period , Japanese doll , Heian period , Amazake
related web sites: http://home2.highway.ne.jp/hinachan/
explanation: One of 5 sekku. It is celebrated on March 3 of each year. Initially man had made dolls in paper crafts and let run away on a river with bad fates ("flow away" is synonymous to "forget" in Japanese). Gradually people had forgot the last stage of ceremony and kept dolls. Since Edo period, it has become "girl's festival" by setting up in the home, luxurious Japanese dolls of Heian style (Hina ningyo) on tiered platforms and taking a sweet drink made from fermented rice (Amazake).

Momotaro

momotarou
alternative words: Momo taro, Momotarou, Momo tarou
keywords: korea, mythology, tale
related topics: Nihonshoki , Muromachi period
related web sites: http://members.xoom.com/cana_h/essays/990617.html , http://www2j.biglobe.ne.jp/~minwa/ , http://ww5.marusan.co.jp/issu/index.htm
explanation: According to Nihonshoki, Korean bandits had settled in Okayama prefecture and bothered the inhabitants. Yamato court then sent Prince Kibitsuhiko to punish them. This historical event had been transformed during Muromachi period to the following fairy tale: an old coupled has discovered one day a great peach floating on a river. A boy born from this peach has been sent, accompanied by a monkey, a pheasant and a dog, to beat demons who live in a neighboring island.

Mononobe family

mononobeshi mononobe
alternative words: Mononobe clan, Mononobe shi, Mononobeshi, Mononobe
keywords: family, mythology
related topics: Emperor Jimmu , Soga family , Nihonshoki , Kojiki , Yamato dynasty
related web sites: http://www.kamnavi.net/mn/ , http://www.saitoh.ne.jp/~takao/clan/02112.htm , http://www.mars.dti.ne.jp/~techno/column/text6.htm
explanation: One of the oldest families in Japan because when Jimmu conquered Kinki region, Mononobe had been already there, sharing the power with Nagasunehiko. But Mononobe betrayed him and adhered to Jinmu's troops. Since then, Mononobe kept a strong power in Yamato court as Omuraji (military chief) until the late 6th when a conflict between Mononobe, con and Soga, pro Buddhist broke out: Mononobe no Moria was killed by Soga no Umako in 587 during a fierce battle and Mononobe declined.

Motoori Norinaga

motoorinorinaga
alternative words: Norinaga Motoori
keywords: famous person, philosophy, scholar
related topics: Edo period , Kojiki , Kokugaku
related web sites: http://www2s.biglobe.ne.jp/~MARUYAMA/tokugawa/norinaga.htm , http://www3.justnet.ne.jp/~rinri/036.htm , http://www.ndl.go.jp/exhibit/50/html/catalog/c065.html , http://www.city.matsusaka.mie.jp/KAN/T01/MOTO.html , http://www.izumishobo.co.jp/iode27-1a.htm
explanation: Kokugaku philosopher. Born in 1730 in a rich merchant family of Ki domain. Soon his family business declined, he had to go to Kyoto to study the medicine to earn a living. After having returned back to home, he continued to study classic literature. In 1762, he met Kamo Mabuchi and became his disciple. After a long study of Kojiki, he published in 1798 Kojiki-den which affirms a supremacy of Japanese ideology over Confucianism and Buddhism. Hirata Atsutane was his disciple.

Mouri Motonari

mourimotonari
alternative words: Motonari Mouri, Mori Motonari, Motonari Mori
keywords: famous person, war lord
related topics: Sengoku period , Oda Nobunaga , Choshu domain
related web sites: http://www.shinkin.co.jp/hiroshin/hiroshima/mo_top.htm , http://www.cisnet.or.jp/~fujicre/mouri.html , http://www.potato.ne.jp/~zhuben/
explanation: Born in 1497 in Hiroshima prefecture as the 2d son of Hiromoto. Clever tactician, he had survived under a protection of Ouchi family against Amako. After the assassination of Ouchi Yoshitaka, he punished traitors and annexed the feud of Ouchi then Amako. Once he controlled all Chugoku region, he entered a conflict against Oda Nobunaga but was saved thanks to his assassination. He gave a lesson to 3 sons by showing that each arrow can be broken but 3 together unbreakable. He died in 1571.

Muramasa

muramasa uemonnnojyoumuramasa youtoumuramasa
alternative words: Uemonnojo Muramasa, Uemon no jo Muramasa, Cursed sword Muramasa
keywords: art, craft, famous person, weapon
related topics: Muromachi period , Tokugawa Ieyasu , Sengoku period , Japanese sword
related web sites: http://nabesan.stbbs.net/history/japanese/muramasa.html
explanation: Sword smith of the late Muromachi period in Mie prefecture. By studying the swords, it was shown that there should have existed 3 generations of sword smiths who carried the name of Muramasa. They were characterized by a similitude of motifs on the both side and very popular during Sengoku period because of their sharpness. They became cursed swords of Tokugawa family because both the grand farther and farther of Tokugawa Ieyasu would have been killed by Muramasa swords.

Muromachi period

muromachijidai ashikagajidai
alternative words: Muromachijidai, Muromachi jidai, Muromachi era, Ashikaga period, Ashikagajidai, Ashikaga jidai, Ashikaga era, Ashikaga reign
keywords: epoch
related topics: Muromachi shogunate , Ashikaga Takauji , Ashikaga Yoshimitsu , Noh , Onin war
related web sites: http://www.ryomonet.co.jp/p-soft/ , http://harachan.net/gon/history/history.html , http://www.linkclub.or.jp/~pip/ututu/
explanation: Period beginning with the nomination of Ashikaga Takauji to "shogun" in 1336 and ended with the suppression of Ashikaga shogunate by Oda Nobunaga in 1573. Contrary to other shogunates, Muromachi's had been always weak and its territorial and political controls scarcely extended beyond the region of Kyoto. The name of Muromachi comes from the district of Kyoto where the office of shogun had been settled.

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