Matsudaira Sadaaki

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In this Japanese name, the family name is "Matsudaira".
Matsudaira Sadaaki
Matudaira Sadaaki.jpg
A young Matsudaira Sadaaki
4th (Matsudaira) Lord of Kuwana
In office
1859–1868
Preceded by Matsudaira Sadamichi
Succeeded by Matsudaira Sadanori
56th Kyoto Shoshidai
In office
1864–1867
Preceded by Inaba Masakuni
Succeeded by none
Personal details
Born (1847-01-18)January 18, 1847
Edo, Japan
Died July 12, 1908(1908-07-12) (aged 61)
Nationality Japanese
Spouse(s) Matsudaira Hatsuko

Matsudaira Sadaaki (松平 定敬?, January 18, 1847 – July 12, 1908) was a Japanese daimyo of the Bakumatsu period, who was the last ruler of the Kuwana Domain. Sadaaki was the adopted heir of Matsudaira Sadamichi, the descendant of Sadatsuna, the third son of Hisamatsu Sadakutsu (1569-1623), who was Tokugawa Ieyasu's brother. His family was known as the Hisamatsu Matsudaira clan. It was to this family that Matsudaira Sadanobu also belonged.[1]

Biography[edit]

Matsudaira Tetsunosuke (the future Sadaaki) was born at Ichigaya in Edo, the 8th son of Matsudaira Yoshitatsu, the lord of the Takasu domain. One of his older brothers was Matsudaira Katamori, who later became the lord of Aizu. In 1859, Tetsunosuke was adopted to succeed the newly deceased Matsudaira Sadamichi as lord of the Kuwana Domain. He was betrothed to Sadamichi's 3 year old daughter Hatsu, thus formalizing the adoption. Coming of age, he took the name Sadaaki.

Sadaaki was the Tokugawa shogunate's last Kyoto shoshidai in the period spanning May 16, 1864 through January 3, 1868.[2] As shoshidai, he supported his brother's work in Kyoto as the Kyoto protector. In 1864, Sadaaki deployed Kuwana troops as part of the shogunate's effort to subdue the Tengu-tō's uprising.

During these years Sadaaki was famous as an avid horseman, and received an imported Arabian horse as a gift from the Shogunate.

The "Four Brothers of Takasu." Left to right: Matsudaira Sadaaki, Matsudaira Katamori, Tokugawa Mochinaga, and Tokugawa Yoshikatsu

Sadaaki fought in the Boshin War (1868-1869), leading Kuwana forces during the fighting in northern Japan. He was together with Katamori until the start of the siege of Aizu, when Katamori asked him to leave and seek reinforcements from the other clans of the Northern Alliance.[3] Sadaaki followed his brother's advice and headed for the Yonezawa Domain.[3] After the fall of Yonezawa and the defeat of the Alliance, Sadaaki embarked on Enomoto Takeaki's warships at Matsushima Bay, and went on to the Ezo Republic.[4] He was brought to Yokohama at the war's end, where he formally surrendered. After a few years in confinement, he was pardoned and released in 1872. It was soon after his release that he finally married Matsudaira Hatsu, who had just turned 16.

Matsudaira Sadaaki in Western uniform during the Bakumatsu period as Kyoto Shoshidai.

Sadaaki joined the Imperial Japanese Army during the Satsuma Rebellion, leading a group of former Kuwana samurai and heading for Kyūshū. Later in life, he served as one of the head priests of Tōshōgū Shrine, along with his brother Katamori, and his brother's former chief karō, Saigō Tanomo. He also lived in Tokyo for some time, and had an avid interest in music; Clara Whitney, an American resident of Tokyo, notes in her diary that he was a skilled organ player.

Sadaaki and Hatsu had two children, Toshi and Masao, both of whom died in infancy. However, Sadaaki also had a concubine; it was this concubine who bore him a son (Sadaharu) who survived to adulthood. He also had a daughter by another woman; this daughter married Sakai Tadakazu.

Sadaaki died at age 61, and is buried in the Somei Cemetery in Tokyo.

In Fiction[edit]

Matsudaira Sadaaki has appeared as a character in many works of fiction, usually in works about his brother and Aizu. In the 1987 TV miniseries Byakkotai, he was portrayed by Hashinosuke Nakamura.[5] In NHK's 1998 Taiga drama Tokugawa Yoshinobu, Jō Watanabe portrayed him.[5] He also appears briefly in episode 7 of the anime Clockwork Fighters, Hiwou's war.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Papinot, Edmund. (2003). Nobiliare du Japon -- Matsudaira (Hisamatsu), p. 32; Papinot, Jacques Edmond Joseph. (1906). Dictionnaire d’histoire et de géographie du Japon. (in French/German).
  2. ^ Meyer, Eva-Maria. "Gouverneure von Kyôto in der Edo-Zeit." Universität Tübingen (in German).
  3. ^ a b Yamakawa, Kenjirō (1933). Aizu Boshin Senshi. p. 523.
  4. ^ Yamakawa, p. 505.
  5. ^ a b "Matsudaira sono ichi"

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • --- (1998). Matsudaira Sadaaki no Subete. Tokyo: Shin Jinbutsu Ōraisha.
  • Totman, Conrad (1980). Collapse of the Tokugawa Bakufu, 1862-1868. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Matsudaira Sadamichi
4th (Matsudaira) Lord of Kuwana
1859-1868
Succeeded by
Matsudaira Sadanori
Preceded by
Inaba Masakuni
56th Kyoto Shoshidai
1864-1867
Succeeded by
none