Tokugawa Masako

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Tokugawa Masako
Tokugawa Masako.jpg
Empress consort of Japan
Born(1607-11-23)November 23, 1607
DiedAugust 2, 1678(1678-08-02) (aged 70)
SpouseEmperor Go-Mizunoo
  • Empress Meishō
  • Princess Onna-ni
  • Prince Sukehito
  • Prince Waka
  • Princess Akiko
  • Princess Yoshiko
  • Princess Kiku
HouseImperial House of Japan (1620-1678) Tokugawa clan (1607-1620)
FatherTokugawa Hidetada

Tokugawa Masako (徳川 和子, November 23, 1607 – August 2, 1678), also known as Kazu-ko,[1] was an empress consort of Japan. She was the daughter of Tokugawa Hidetada, who was the second shōgun of the Edo period of the history of Japan.


  • 1620 (Genna 6): Masako entered the palace as a consort of the Emperor Go-Mizunoo. Although Go-Mizunoo has already taken a wife, the marriage to Masako was celebrated with great pomp.[2]
  • 1624: Masako is granted the title of chūgū (中宮), indicating she was a second legitimate wife and therefore an established Empress Consort. She is the first consort to hold this title since the reign of Emperor Go-Hanazono.[3]
  • 1629: When the Emperor Go-Mizunoo abdicated in 1629, Masako took the title and name of Tōfuku mon-in (東福門院).[4]

Masako's daughter, Imperial Princess Onna-Ichi-no-miya Okiko, succeeded her father. She ascended the Chrysanthemum Throne as Empress Meishō.[4] Meishō would be succeeded by two of her father's sons by another mother. These Imperial princes would become known as Emperor Go-Kōmyō and Emperor Go-Sai. Both had been brought up by Masako as if they were her own sons.[5]


She used her wealth to bring together Edo and Kyoto and also to help maintain the high standards of the court. She also used it to restore significant buildings that had been damaged in the previous years of warring. Many of these restorations were originally credited to her brother Iemitsu, or her husband, but have recently been properly credited to her. Another important way she used her money is as a representation of the Tokugawa clan.


  • Father: Tokugawa Hidetada
  • Mother: Oeyo
  • Husband: Emperor Go-Mizunoo
  • Children:
    • Princess Okiko (女一宮興子内親王, Onna-ichi-no-miya Okiko Naishinnō, 1624–1696), became Empress Meishō
    • Princess ? (女二宮, Onna-ni-no-miya, 1625–1651) married Konoe Hisatsugu
    • Prince Sukehito (高仁親王, Sukehito Shinnō, 1626–1628)
    • Prince Waka (若宮, Waka-no-miya, 1628)
    • Princess Akiko (女三宮昭子内親王, Onna-San-no-miya Akiko Naishinnō, 1629–1675)
    • Princess Yoshiko (女五宮賀子内親王, Onna-Go-no-Miya Yoshiko Naishinnō, 1632–1696) married Nijō Mitsuhira
    • Princess Kiku (菊宮, Kiku-no-miya, 1633–1634)
  • Adopted:


She was a patron of the arts. She collected antiques as well ascontemporary art. She was also skilled at calligraphy and dabbled in poetry.


  1. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1959). The Imperial Family of Japan, p. 113.
  2. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, pp. 113–114; Titsingh, Isaac. (1834). Annales des empereurs du japon, p. 410.
  3. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, p. 114.
  4. ^ a b Ponsonby-Fane, p. 115.
  5. ^ Ponsonby-Fane, pp. 115–116.


Japanese royalty
Preceded by
Unknown Empress (last known Princess Junshi)
Empress consort of Japan
Succeeded by
Fujiwara no Fusako