MUROMACHI PERIOD OF JAPAN
ARBIND KUMAR BLOG
MUROMACHI PERIOD OF JAPAN , despite continuous war in the country , reflected a period of economic prosperity , or shall I say , the continuation of economic prosperity of the KAMAKURA PERIOD . It started in 1333 AD and continued upto 1568 AD . As we know that the feudalism now had percolated deep into the JAPANESE political and economic system , and the KENMU RESTORATION , a three years period of the JAPANESE Imperial history between 1333 AD to 1336 AD , or shall we say , between the KAMAKURA PERIOD and MUROMACHI PERIOD , had been a period in which an effort was made by the Emperor GO-DAIGO to overthrown the KAMAKURA SHOGUNATE and to restore the lost power of the Imperial Court/Imperial House of JAPAN . The KAMAKURA SHOGUNATE , due to various internal reasons , had decided to put on throne alternatively two contending Imperial lines : 1. THE NORTHERN COURT OR THE SENIOR LINE ; and 2. THE SOUTHERN COURT OR JUNIOR LINE . And this policy continued for several years until a member of the SOUTHERN COURT ascended to the throne as Emperor GO-DAIGO who in the GENKO WAR was defeated in 1331 AD and was exiled to the OKI island . But in the second uprising in 1333 AD , GO-DAIGO defeated the KAMAKURA SHOGUNATE at the seige of KAMAKURA with the help of General ASHIKAGA TAKAUJI . And in this way GO-DAIGO power was restored but his policies didn’t satisfied to his SAMURAI supporters in particular and the JAPANESE people in general . It resulted in what is called KENMU RESTORATION in the JAPANESE history in which TAKAUJI became the SHOGUN who founded the ASHIKAGA SHOGUNATE in 1336 AD . In this way began the NORTHERN and SOUTHERN COURTS and the MUROMACHI PERIOD OF the JAPANESE history .
TAKAUJI set up his SHOGUNATE at MUROMACHI district of KYOTO . However , the challenges before TAKAUJI were numerous . He had to face the challenge put by the SOUTHERN COURT whose Emperor GO-DAIGO had fled to the southern city of YOSHINO where he had set up a rival government on the one hand , and on the other hand he had to maintain his authority over his own subordinate governors of the provinces as such . Following the line of the KAMAKURA SHOGUNATE , the MUROMACHI SHOGUNATE had also started appointing its allies to rule over the provinces of JAPAN . But this experiment of the MUROMACHI SHOGUNATE resulted in the establishment of the feudal lords called DAIMYOS who gradually became so powerful that they started disobeying the SHOGUN . However , TAKAUJI’S grandson ASHIKAGA YOSHIMISTU who came to power in 1368 AD , consolidated the power of the SHOGUNATE , brought the entire country together and brokered a deal between the NORTHERN COURT and the SOUTHERN COURT , thus brought them together and in this way ended the Civil War in JAPAN . He remained in power till 1408 AD and expanded the power of the SHOGUNATE . Henceforth , the power of the Imperial Court was kept under tight control by the SHOGUNATE as such which brought about a sort of peace and stability in the JAPANESE society .
Another violent civil war , known as ONIN war, broke out in 1467 AD for who would control the ruling SHOGUM . The DAIMYOS took sides to establish the candidate of their choice on the post of SHOGUN . But by the time the issue of succession was settled in 1477 , the SHOGUN had lost all its power to the DAIMYO who now started ruling hundreds of independent states throughout JAPAN . However , this Civil War didn’t stop as the DAIMYOS started fighting among themselves for the control of JAPAN . To name a few , UESUGI KENSHIN and TAKEDA SHINGEN were the most powerful DAIMYOS of the period . To control the warring parties , the skilled spies and assassins called NINJA ( COVERT AGENT ) , were hired by the DAIMYOS . The legendary secretive lifestyle of NINJA spies had remained the talk of JAPAN for many years . Moreover , the rebellious peasants and warring monks affiliated with the JAPANESE BUDDHIST temples also started raising their own armies . So , such was the political situation during the MUROMACHI PERIOD OF JAPAN as such .
NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .
TO BE CONTINUED ……………….