(1537-1598) was the second of the three unifiers of Japan in the 16th
century [the first was Oda Nobunaga and the 2nd was Tokugawa Ieyasu].
He was born the son of a peasant farmer and rose in power under Oda because
of his skills as a general and a politician [and also because he happened
to always be in the right places at the right times]. Hideyoshi specialized
in gaining the allegiance of his enemies instead of destroying them, with
the exception of Buddhist monks who continually opposed him and were put
to death. He was also famous for unsuccessfully invading Korea in 1592
to 1598, for emphasizing cultural achievements for the samurai class,
and for sporadic suppression of foreign religious powers.
The Three Unifiers Of Japan
Oda Nobunaga (1534-1582) was
the first individual to attempt to
unify Japan at the end of the
Warring States period. He was
a very successful general
with his superior strategy and
western fire arms.
Toyotomi Hideyoshi (1537-
1598) is my personal favorite
of the three unifiers. He
was originally a vassal of
Oda and took over his
power after avenging his
(1542-1616) took the title
of Shogun after defeating
Hideyoshi's weak heir. Ieyasu
was the first Shogun of the Tokugawa Dynasty that
ruled Japan for 250 years.
Another interesting little fact about Hideyoshi (at least interesting in relation to my current residence) is that he built one of his major strongholds right here in Osaka. Osaka Castle was built by Hideyoshi, and although the original has since burnt down after being struck by lightening, a modern version of the castle was rebuilt and is part of todays Osaka skyline.
I have visited this castle (as well as the more famous Himeji Castle, which was also one of Hideyoshi's) and have taken a few photographs of it. If you're interested in reading about that trip and seeing some of those pictures then:
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