© Copyright Robert Cole 2015
A March to KOMAKI&Nagakute
Originally, NOBUNAGA had received the Emperor OGIMACHI’s unification directive. He had installed and later removed the last ASHIKAGA SHOGUN, YOSHIAKI and, at the head of his generals, brought a successful end to the SENGOKU ”100 Year Wars.” He was the power. With his assassination, the ODA machine had no head. Like the frayed end of a rope - with no knot - the individual generals had no leader.
Their council elected one year old, SAMBOSHI, to NOBUNAGA’s empty chair. This ancient precedent placated 2nd and 3rd sons, NOBUO and NOBUTAKA to an uneasy station, but they were not their father and never had been. 

NOBUO and NOBUTAKA had entertained their utter illusion of inheriting the head, and SHOGUNAL crown of all Japan, while the real powers, ODA right arm, HIDEYOSHI and TOKUGAWA of the “Five Provinces” bided time and played their hands. 

SHIZUKATAKE saw the end of SHIBATA KATSUIYE and ODA NOBUTAKA in favor of 2nd son, NOBUO. Now, seeing the lay of the land, with HIDEYOSHI looming largest, NOBUO began courting IYEYASU. 

The following year, 1584, all ODA generals and vassals were to gather at AZUCHI, NOBUNAGA’s creation and dream castle overlooking Lake BIWA, to bring SAMBOSHI their good wishes for the New Year’s SHO-GATSU festivities, - when HIDEYOSHI failed to show. 


Azuchi - The Most Beautiful
This blatant insult and loud, trumpeting statement-of-intentions, would bring new changes and urgency, and new destiny, for the Big Game.

The greatest single power had challenged and NOBUO, who had been crawling under IYEYASU’s wing for some time, now called for support. 

TOKUGAWA saw himself outnumbered, but this was his time. This was destiny. This was aligning himself with the rightful blood on one side, or with the rebel, there was no other course. 

HIDEYOSHI had the new support of the MORI, from his work on the SANYODO, and could rely on MAEDA TOSHIIYE and NIWA NAGAHIDE (NIWA NAGAHIDE See sword had built AZUCHI for NOBUNAGA and had then been master at the arms manufacturing center, SAWAYAMA, OMI - KOTETSU’s family home,
See KOTETSU pdf. SAWAYAMA had then gone to another HIDEYOSHI supporter, HORI HIDEMASA).

HIDEYOSHI had given KAGA to TOSHIIYE and KATSUIYE’s ECHIZEN to the NIWA. He also had the support of UESUGI KAGEKATSU. This then giving him the SANYODO and most of the HOKURIKU and northern TOSANDO areas.

Weaker side, IYEYASU, held the TOKAIDO and was somewhat bolstered from his marriage into the ODAWARA HOJO. 
Regardless, this was fate. This would place his future. Loss could mean obscurity, but would likely only mean he rightfully supported the rightful ODA heir. A tie or a win was the same and the highest expectation, it would place him an equal with HIDEYOSHI from all views and hold his position far into the future. 

HIDEYOSHI would have the unified power of Japan, or nothing. NOBUNAGA was gone and his empty seat would be claimed. 

Equal Thirds
NOBUO’s only hold on his father’s power was the veneer of his last name. He was NOBUNAGA’s second boy, a ridiculous token and no more. The power was a divvy between HIDEYOSHI and IYEYASU. 

Toyotomi Hideyoshi

Tokugawa Iyeyasu

God of Good-fortune
The two built palisades opposite each other around several positions near KOMAKI. The stalemate was broken by a sneak attack planned by the HIDEYOSHI forces on TOKUGAWA’s MIKAWA, but IYEYASU had heard of it and slipped through the night to face the rear of their guard having breakfast the next morning. 

In his sleep during the previous nights, TOKUGAWA had had a dream wherein, the God of Luck and Good Fortune rode at his side marking a great victory with success! 
From this dream, IYEYASU had his armorer create a DAIKOKU ZUKIN or bonnet-style KABUTO exactly as worn by the famous, DAIKOKU, God of Good Fortune, as was pictured in his dream. 

Wearing this KABUTO, IYEYASU rode into battle, and history, after the successful "Breakfast Skirmish" that would become known by its location, “NAGAKUTE.” 

Daikoku-Zukin of
Tokugawa Iyeyasu

Wearing the new DAIKOKU ZUKIN, he reviewed the 2500 heads of HIDEYOSHI’s choicest troops and allied generals. His complete victory at NAGAKUTE would bring a protracted stall and complicated set of negotiations. 

HIDEYOSHI would have his expected governmental control from the hill top Castle at MOMOYAMA, his Golden Pavilion to rise at OSAKA and the China campaigns, all settled in the future before him. 

TOKUGAWA, now enjoined in support - a nearly equal power, would remain the richest, most powerful DAIMYO and head of the KANTO “Five Provinces”, and await his coming SHOGUNAL triumph. 

Osaka Castle 

The Battle of Nagakute
The negotiations following NAGAKUTE had one or two small concessions for IYEYASU:

First, his prized “KAI-no-KUNI GO” YOSHIHIRO, TAKEDA SHINGEN’s famous HAITO ”personal sword” that had passed to his son, KATSUYORI and with which KATSUYORI had killed 11 on the day TAKIGAWA KAZUMASU’s army rode the last of the TAKEDA down near TEMMOKUZAN, the sword that had transferred as gift from NOBUNAGA and KAZUMASU to IYEYASU, would be forfeit. See Shingen

This beloved symbol of IYEYASU’s whole success and life’s work would be given over to HIDEYOSHI, and IYEYASU would also marry HIDEYOSHI’s sister.

HIDEYOSHI would give IYEYASU another sword, but this groveling of IYEYASU allowed face for HIDEYOSHI and a new cycle of waiting and biding.

While the two powers bartered position on the future of Japan, NOBUO earned his greatest stake by naming his father’s ICHIMONJI YOSHIFUSA, after a NAGAKUTE kill, the KOKUHO master-piece, OKADA-GIRI.
See Okada-giri
The DAIKOKU ZUKIN became the most important article of the TOKUGAWA banner. Not only Crown, but symbol and charm of the TOKUGAWA Family. DAIKOKU, God of Luck and Good Fortune, was forever symbolized in the TOKUGAWA DAIKOKU ZUKIN and it, forever symbol of SHOGUNAL Japan. 

When IYEYASU passed the SHOGUNATE to his son, a new DAIKOKU ZUKIN was made, as IYEYASU took his, and a new crown for the new SHOGUN would become the honored protocol for the next 250 years. All 15 generations created new DAIKOKU ZUKIN as Crown of Power. 

Japan’s oldest families have certain traditions for the SHO-GATSU or New Years Festival. An article has been adopted by each family that symbolizes some great event or circumstance that played a special part in the history of that family. These articles are brought out and displayed on SHO-GATSU as a special part of the yearly festivities.

The TOKUGAWA family symbol, displayed during the SHO-GATSU celebration is the SHOGUNAL “Crown”, the DAIKOKU ZUKIN. Displayed in honor of the good luck, the God of Good Fortune brought IYEYASU at the turning point in the TOKUGAWA path. From the dream, that led to his creation of the KABUTO - for luck ...at the battle of NAGAKUTE

Tokugawa Iyeyasu
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