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Warriors in Japan (Term2Lect2) Overview of Medieval Japanese history; includes war with Mongols etc.

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University of Toronto St. George
Carry Takagaki

Japan- Rise of the Warrior - Warriors were mainly mercenaries. Most were not loyal (early on) however there were exceptions. “Subordinates wielded bows against their sovereign and drew swords v. their masters” - Samurai- retainer. Stereotypical image of samurai is misleading. - Bushi- warrior - Rulers would hire private armies. Taira became very powerful as they were used much by the emperor (despite efforts to alternate military groups used) - Gempei War- 1180-85- against the Taira - Aristocrats hire army and civil war erupts - Miamoto come out victorious and the head of the group is given the title Shogun- supreme military leader - Proceeds to collect taxes and police the country via everyday administration (new ruler) st - Miamoto Yoritomo- 1 Shogunate- military gov’t that shows respect to emperor (becomes symbolic). Power is taken slowly by the shogunate and the capital is moved near Tokyo to move away from the influence of the court at Kyoto - Yoritomo dies and his son takes over (later killed by grandfather) and is forced into retirement]. Clan is eventually killed off due to internal feuding - Aristocrats now name shogun and the shogunate becomes a puppet of the Hojo regency - Real Power: Emperor- Retired Emperor- Shogun- Hojo Regency (Puppet chain of power) - Mongols- conquer Korea in 1258, 1264 name Beijing as capital - Aspire to conquer Japan. Send letters to Japanese asking them to submit as a tributary or face war. Hojo reject letters - 1274- invasion force sent to Japan (Kyushi) - Mongols were forced to fight on sea (disadvantageous). Eventually they reached land but their fleet was crippled by a storm and returned to Korea with 1/3 of their men - 1279- Mongols establish the Yuan Dynasty. Envoys send to Japan in 1275 and 1279 are beheaded - Hojo calls for warriors to go to Kyushi and defend and fortify the area - 1281- 4500 ships advance to Japan during typhoon season (August). Typhoon (Kamikaze- divine winds) break up the fleet and they retreat to Korea to plan another attack - K. Khan dies in 1294 and Japan is spared - End of Kamakura Shogunate- warriors are upset with the spoils of war from the Mongol campaign (no land or booty to be had). Warriors go unpaid and grow increasingly discontent - Emperor Go Daigo- 1288-1339- rallys warriors to overthrow current shogunate - 2 groups join the emperor from the Hojo and the regency is soundly defeated - Kemm
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