Siege of Hōjūjidono

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Siege of the Hōjūjidono
Part of the Genpei War
LocationHōjūji Palace, Kyoto
Result Siege succeeds; Minamoto no Yoshinaka victory
Minamoto clan warriors Taira clan sympathizers, incl. court nobles and warrior monks from Enryakuji and Miidera
Commanders and leaders
Minamoto no Yoshinaka Taira no Tomoyasu

The 1184 siege of the Hōjūjidono was part of Japan's Genpei War, and was a key element of the conflict between Minamoto no Yoshinaka and his cousins Yoritomo and Yoshitsune for control of the Minamoto clan.

For some time, Yoshinaka had desired to seize control of the clan from his cousins. Upon returning to Kyoto from his victories at Shinohara and Kurikara, he decided to split from the clan, plotting with Minamoto no Yukiie to kidnap Emperor Go-Shirakawa, and establish a government of their own, in the provinces north of Kyoto. But Yukiie did not, in the end, aid Yoshinaka in this scheme. Yoshinaka attacked the Hōjūjidono (also known as the Hōjūji Palace), set it aflame, killed the defenders, and seized Emperor Go-Shirakawa.[1]

He was opposed by a number of court nobles and warrior monks from Mount Hiei and Miidera,[2] but ultimately made it out of the city victorious, with the cloistered emperor as hostage.

However, at this point, the Minamoto armies, under Yukiie, Yoritomo, Yoshitsune, and Noriyori were surrounding the capital. Yoshinaka fled across the Bridge of Uji, where he fought the second Battle of Uji.


  1. ^ Sansom, George (1958). A History of Japan to 1334. Stanford University Press. p. 296. ISBN 0804705232.
  2. ^ Turnbull, Stephen (1998). The Samurai Sourcebook. Cassell & Co. p. 203. ISBN 1854095234.