|Other name(s)||Nakamura Hanjirō (中村 半次郎)|
|Nickname(s)||Hitokiri Hanjirō (Hanjiro the Assassin)|
|Born||December 11, 1838|
Kagoshima, Satsuma Domain
(now Kagoshima, Japan)
|Died||September 24, 1877 (aged 38)|
|Allegiance||Empire of Japan (former) |
|Service/||Imperial Japanese Army (former)|
|Years of service||1868–1876|
|Battles/wars||Kinmon Incident |
Boshin WarSatsuma Rebellion
|Other work||former assassin|
Kirino, also known as Nakamura Hanjirō (中村 半次郎), was renowned as one of the Four Hitokiri of the Bakumatsu. His sword style was Ko-jigen-ryū, a branch of the high-speed Jigen-ryū . Kirino's activities during the early to mid-1860s largely centered on Kyoto. During the Boshin War, as a senior commander of Satsuma forces, he was a high-ranking officer of the new Imperial Army. It was Kirino who was the representative of the imperial army at the surrender of Wakamatsu Castle, where he received the petition for surrender from Matsudaira Katamori, the lord of Aizu.
Kirino became a brigadier general in the early years of the Imperial Japanese Army. However, he joined the forces of Saigō Takamori during the Satsuma Rebellion, taking part in the march northward to Kumamoto. A lover of French Eau de Cologne, Kirino wore it even during his last battle at Shiroyama. Kirino remained with Saigō until the end, and was killed at the end of the rebellion. He was buried alongside with Saigō Takamori, Beppu Shinsuke, Katsura Hisatake, Murata Shinpachi, Shinohara Kunimoto, and Oyama Tsunayoshi among others at the Nanshu Cemetery, Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan.
Kirino's wife, Hisa (ヒサ), the second daughter of Chōsa Koemon (帖佐 小右衛門), was a skilled martial artist. As seen in several contemporary ukiyo-e woodblock prints depicting the uprising, she also joined in its march to lead the women auxiliary troops. Unlike her husband, she survived, and lived until 1920.
- Mossman, Samuel (1880). Japan. London: Sampson Low, Marston, Searle, & Rivington. p. 96.
- "Information on the Satsuma Rebellion" (in Japanese). 3 October 2007.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kirino Toshiaki.|
- (in Japanese) Photos of the graves of the Satsuma Rebellion leaders, including Kirino (3 October 2007)
- Nagano Ōgaku 長野桜岳 (1972). Kirino Toshiaki 桐野利秋. Tokyo: Shin Jinbutsu Ōraisha.