VI: Consuming Things

The Tokugawa Storehouse: Ieyasu’s Encounters With Things

leyasu’s encounters with things

Morgan Pitelka

It is no less astonishing to see the importance that they attach to things which they regard as the treasures of Japan, although to us such things seem trivial and childish; they, in their turn, look upon our jewels and gems as worthless.

(Alessandro Valignano, SJ, Historia del Principio y Progresso de la Compañía de Jesús en las Indias Orientales, 1584)

Walter Benjamin’s reading of Charles Baudelaire as the archetypal modern poet, trash-picking through the refuse of modernity in an attempt to salvage the language of the new urban experience, is a powerful example of the former’s archivist materialism.1 Likewise, in his musings on the Paris Arcades, Benjamin paid equal attention to words, images, and things to the totality of the social experience of being in the fractured hallways of incipient modernity. His collection — the literary and material Benjaminian storehouse — brims with ‘the idiosyncratic registrations of an author, subjective, full of gaps, unofficial.’2 And it is perhaps this somewhat flighty, scrapbook quality that best represents nineteenth- and early twentieth-century urban growth and capitalist culture. The juxtaposition of street observations and overheard utterances in The Arcades Project and the picture postcards of Russian toys and Italian tourist destinations sent to friends and collected in Walter Benjamin’s Archive, for example, point to the phantasmagoric dreamworld that so fascinated Benjamin: his ‘City of Mirrors’ that both brought people together as the crowd and permanently isolated them as bourgeois individuals. Both in his analysis and in the character of his choices, Benjamin’s collection is an apt representation of modernity itself.

For the historian of the early modern, Benjamin’s work begs the question: what words, images, and things fill the storehouse of early modern memory? We should not expect to find a Benjaminian archive, of course, bursting with mass-produced baubles and relics of early twentieth-century commodity fetishism. Rather, we might ask how a focus on early modern material culture and collecting allows us to ask new questions about the making of the period. In the case of Japan, the early modern period is usually associated with the emergence of lively urban centers such as Edo: new forms of commerce and protoindustry; increased professionalization of the bureaucracy; and the appearance of protonationalist discourses such as the National Learning movement. Much historiography has focused on explaining Japan’s rapid industrialization in the late nineteenth century, reducing the study of early modern Japan to a kind of prehistory of the present; what matters, in such teleological narratives, is that which leads to modernization. Even the most prominent work on material culture in Japan before the Meiji Restoration of 1868, Susan Hanley’s Everyday Things in Premodern Japan: The Hidden Legacy of Material Culture, is primarily focused on economic history and the role of material conditions in Japan’s rapid industrialization and modernization in the late nineteenth century.*’ Recent work on Japan’s long sixteenth century, however, points to the role of the ‘persistent medieval’4 in the establishment of the Tokugawa state and in diverse forms of cultural production and consumption in early modern Japan. In this chapter, I will examine the collection of the founder of the Tokugawa shogunate, Tokugawa leyasu (1543—1616), and argue that his storehouse - which grew out of the cultural practices and predilections of late medieval, elite warriors — played a significant role in shaping the history and culture of Japan’s early modern period. The particular means of acquisition, methods of use and display, and forms of probate and reproduction of leyasu’s storehouse are themselves particularly apt representations of Japan’s early modern experience.

The decision to study leyasu’s collection is hardly arbitrary. As one of the most powerful and influential warlords of the late sixteenth century, and as the founder of the Tokugawa military government that would endure for more than 250 years, leyasu’s access to valuable things was perhaps unmatched in his day. Furthermore, ample evidence exists that in Japanese society during the long sixteenth century, artworks and other forms of material culture functioned not merely as markers of status or objects of fetishism, but as actors in networks of information and influence that shaped the careers of men such as leyasu. Rather than seeing material culture as the product of a few exceptional historical subjects, or even as the result of a particular set of social or cultural conditions, we can integrate things into the overlapping collectives - the web of relations, performances, and practices - that make up history. To put it another way, material culture is not the product of an abstract entity called ‘society,’ external to the relations between people. Rather, things are constituent and active elements inside a messy system of relations, agents that relate as much by chance as by intentionality.

One early commenter on the elite Japanese relationship with things was the Italian Jesuit Alessandro Valignano, who arrived in Japan in 1579 when the archipelago was in the throes of civil war. During this first visit, he stayed for three years. He returned again for two years in 1590, and a final time for five years in 1598, long enough to witness the victory of Tokugawa leyasu at the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600 and the growth of the Edo settlement.6 Valignano is a remarkable figure, not least for his articulation of a new policy for the Jesuits known as ‘adaptationism’ in which the cultural preferences of locals were studied, respected, and, when necessary, accommodated. He insisted on solid language training and immersion in the local culture. Above all, he demanded that Jesuits should carefully observe their surroundings in Japan and engage in an almost ethnographic attempt to comprehend the unreflexive habits of locals. One topic on which Valignano was particularly articulated was the ‘astonishing’ Japanese relationship to things. In the following excerpts of a long passage, he describes the Japanese fetishization of tea utensils and swords and contrasts this with the European lust for diamonds and rubies.

It is no less astonishing to see the importance that they attach to things which they regard as the treasures of Japan, although to us such things seem trivial and childish; they, in their turn, look upon our jewels and gems as worthless ... The King of Bungo once showed me a small earthenware caddy for which, in all truth, we would have no other use than to put it in a bird’s cage as a drinking trough; nevertheless, he had paid 9,000 silver taels (or about 14,000 ducats) for it, although I would certainly not have given two farthings for it. The surprising thing is that, although thousands of similar caddies... are made, the Japanese no more value them than we do. The prized pieces must have been made by certain ancient masters and the Japanese can immediately pick out these valuable items from among thousands of others, just as European jewelers can distinguish between genuine and false stones. I do not think that any European could acquire such an appreciation... because however much we may examine them, we can never manage to understand in what consists their value and how they are different from the others.7

The particular type of tea utensil that Valignano describes in this passage is the tea caddy (chaire), many of which were made in China during the Song Dynasty (960—1279) and brought to Japan in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, and which leyasu collected with great passion. He also acquired tea bowls, particularly well-known works made in China or Korea. Valignano continues:

They value no less their... swords. Here there seems to be greater justification because a good sword is prized in any country. However, they go to extremes here as well for they spend three, four or six thousand ducats on a blade ... When we ask them why they spend so much money on these objects, which of themselves are worthless, they answer that they do it for the same reason as we buy a diamond or a ruby for a great price, a thing which causes them no less astonishment ... Indeed, they declare that the things that they buy and treasure at least serve some purpose and thus their desire to give so much money for them is less reprehensible than the conceit of Europeans who purchase precious stones which serve for nothing.8

This is in many ways a typical description of the collision of worldviews that marked the encounter between East Asians and Europeans in the sixteenth century. Valignano’s realization that the value placed on things in a particular culture creates a kind of social force, however, is astute; he notes that because the Japanese appreciated not just the aesthetic and functional properties of tea utensils and swords, but in addition paid attention to the pedigree of such objects, they would pay huge sums to acquire them. It is possible to take this a step further and say that the material and symbolic qualities of certain objects compelled people to act in ways that, to this Jesuit observer, were profoundly mysterious. In short, the objects circulating through the lives of these elite Japanese of the sixteenth century had a kind of agency. leyasu’s collection, which became an archetypal model of what warriors should want and aspire to in early modern Japan, contained many of the most famous objects of his day, things that influenced leyasu and his peers and continued to effect change when ‘assembled under a new law,’ as Benjamin put it: deployed in the particular social and cultural context of early modern Japanese society.9 leyasu’s collection is also worth our attention because of the existence of supporting documentary records and significant numbers of extant works. While all elite warriors in the long sixteenth century acquired objects, ranging from commissioned artworks to imported treasures, not all of them left records of these acquisitions or worried about their fate after the death of their owners. leyasu, acting in ways that tell us much about his meticulous attention to the balance of power in his family and his careful establishment of his own historical and cultural legacy, did both. Perhaps, the most important document for studying leyasu’s material heritage is The Record of Utensils Inherited from Sumpu Castle [Sumpu owakemono odôgu chd]. This text was compiled according to leyasu’s prior instructions over a period of two years from 1616 to 1618 at Sumpu Castle (contemporary Shizuoka City, Shizuoka Prefecture), leyasu’s final base and resting place. It lists the money and objects owned by leyasu and records their probate. Some of these objects are still extant in the collection of the Tokugawa Art Museum in Nagoya and the collections of the Tôshôgû Shrines that were built to deify leyasu in the mid-seventeenth century, while others have been scattered to private and public collections or lost.

The existence of this useful document does not mean that the social biographies of extant objects can necessarily be traced; in most instances, The Record simply records the number of items in certain categories. Only a few named ‘famous objects’ (tneibutsu) can be tracked over long periods of time as they move from one collection to the next. Still, the document allows us to read the taxonomies of objects that were significant in the lives of leyasu and his peers, contextualize those objects in the social and cultural practices of the day, and then speculate about the instrumentalization of these categories of material culture in new early modern configurations. This chapter will examine in particular the contexts in which two types of material culture -weapons and Chinese art — came to be widely collected by elite warriors, part of a ‘struggle against dispersion,’ to use Benjamin’s phrase, that tells us much about the long sixteenth century.10 In particular, three extant objects — an arquebus made by Noda Kiyotaka in 1611; a twelfth-century short sword named ‘Ebina Kokaji’; and a blue and white tea bowl from Ming-dynasty China - will be situated in lesser known but significant moments in the biography of Tokugawa leyasu, particularly acts of alliance-building, war, and détente that prefigured the establishment of the early modern Japanese state.

Weapons of war: swords and guns in the Tokugawa storehouse

On January 31, 1543, the young warlord Matsudaira Hirotada (1526—1549) and his 14-year-old wife Odai no Kata (1528—1602) had their first and only child, a boy who would later take the name Tokugawa leyasu.11 The couple resided in Okazaki Castle (present-day Okazaki city, Aichi Prefecture) in Mikawa province, headquarters of a relatively small territory in central Japan that was sandwiched between larger and more militarily powerful domains. Although leyasu was born into an elite family of warrior leaders and possessed the type of lineage that guaranteed wealth, education, and power in times of peace, the situation of the Matsudaira in 1543 was precarious. The nominal political authority of Japan, the warrior government headed by the Ashikaga house in Kyoto, had lost much of its influence since the outbreak of war in 1467.12 Regional warlords (daimyo) routinely formed alliances and attacked neighbors with little regard for the policies or preferences of the Ashikaga.13 Likewise, Buddhist institutions, already significant landholders, in some cases amassed armies and challenged warrior hegemony through increasingly large acts of rebellion. In 1488, for example, followers of the True Pure Land sect of Buddhism took over Kaga province (present-day southern Ishikawa Prefecture). By 1543, similar uprisings had occurred in Sakai, Kyoto, and Osaka among other locations.14 Therefore, as was the case for many vulnerable warlords, the leaders of the Matsudaira could rely neither on the central authority of warrior government in Kyoto nor on the steadying hand of traditional religious institutions to shield their domain from conflict among larger competing forces.

Regional conflicts and new religious uprisings were not the only ingredients in the relative instability of the mid-sixteenth century. The year of leyasu’s birth, 1543, also marked the arrival of the first Europeans in Japan, Portuguese traders who brought new goods to sell, access to new markets overseas, a new worldview in the form of Christianity, and perhaps most significant for warriors of the period, a new and powerful weapon: the musket or arquebus. Historians have made much of the circulation of Jesuits throughout Japan beginning with the arrival of Francis Xavier and two of his compatriots in 1549, but the arrival of the early modern gun, and the ensuing changes in the material culture of warfare, not to mention the growth of the market in gunpowder and other necessary materials, surely played as significant a role in the ebb and flow of the sixteenth century and the founding of the Tokugawa military government. According to the most reliable early record of this first Japanese encounter with European firearms, The Record of the Musket [Teppokt] (1606), there were around 100 people on board the ship that arrived at the small island of Tanegashima on September 23, 1543, including two ‘whose physical features differed from ours, and whose language was not understood. Those who saw them found them strange.’15 The two Portuguese demonstrated the use of their arquebuses, and the local ruler soon ordered local artisans to study the design and mechanism and manufacture reproductions. Again, according to The Record of the Musket, ‘in a little more than a year several tens of teppd [muskets] were manufactured.’16 The use and production of the arquebus spread incrementally across the archipelago, as warriors found themselves drawn to the range and accuracy of the weapon.17 Chinese, Japanese, and Portuguese traders provided the one ingredient in gunpowder — saltpeter — not readily available locally. This fueled the already impressive growth of Sakai, the nearest port city to the capital of Kyoto, into a thriving metropolis and cultural center (most famous, perhaps, as the birthplace of the culture of tea, or chanoyu) as well as a political power that would compete with warlords and religious institutions later in the sixteenth century.

Tokugawa leyasu, then, was born in a period of significant political and social fragmentation. He experienced this turmoil — indeed, embodied it -when he was sent to be a hostage in the household of a neighboring, more powerful warlord, at the age of five. After the death of his father and a youth spent entirely as a kind of privileged captive, leyasu became the ruler of Okazaki castle in 1560. He owed this abrupt change in circumstance to a neighboring warlord, a young and brash ruler named Oda Nobunaga (1534— 1582) who had attacked and defeated leyasu’s captor and who over time came to be leyasu’s senior ally. This contingent relationship transformed leyasu from a potential victim of the violence of the sixteenth century to one of the leading players on the stage of national politics.

In 1568, Nobunaga occupied the capital city of Kyoto and intervened in the shogunal succession, a kind of public announcement of his intention to consolidate power. For the next 14 years, Nobunaga waged war on various opponents, including the Enryakuji Buddhist complex on Mt. Hiei, the warlord Takeda Shingen and his son Katsuyori, and various True Pure Land uprisings.18 leyasu was a central participant in these events, particularly actions against the Takeda. He moved his headquarters from Okazaki, the hereditary home of his family for generations, to Hamamatsu to the east, closer to the conflict with the Takeda.19 I have written elsewhere about leyasu’s fortuitous escape from death at the hands of Takeda Shingen not once but twice, and the subsequent early death of the old Takeda warlord, seemingly of natural causes, in 1573.20 His son Katsuyori continued to resist, but leyasu and Nobunaga both took advantage of this surprising development by seizing

The Tokugawa storehouse 375 portions of the Takeda domain and recruiting vassals of their former enemy whenever and wherever possible.

Around this time, leyasu began including arquebusiers in his army. In 1574, leyasu sent a letter to a military strategist who specialized in firearms usage, awarding him a stipend after witnessing what is presumed to be an arquebus display.21 Within several years, documents also refer to leyasu’s inclusion of arquebusier units in battle, as when his vassal Matsudaira letada recorded that ‘leyasu ordered the arquebusier unit to fire quickly!’ during a conflict with Takeda forces outside of Nishio Castle.” It should be noted that the use of firearms in this period was not sudden and revolutionary; rather, units of arquebusiers worked alongside units of archers. As Thomas Conlan demonstrates in a statistical analysis of casualty lists from the long sixteenth century, injuries from firearms only gradually increased in this period and only truly became widespread and tactically significant after 1600.23

Still, the use of firearms helped Nobunaga and leyasu to strategize against varied enemies and obstacles, as we shall see below. The guns themselves were solid and well crafted based on Portuguese models but produced with increasing innovation by Japanese artisans. An example of an arquebus from leyasu’s collection consists of an iron cylinder forged in an octagonal shape, with layers of native Japanese steel and imported iron to provide both strength and enough flexibility to withstand the pressure of firing. The other metal parts, such as the serpentine that held the match and the lock plate of the matchlock mechanism, are made of a copper and silver alloy (shibuichi). The wooden butt and stock are made of oak, though flowering plum and other woods are also found.24 Soldiers employed the weapon by inserting the gunpowder and shot and then lighting the fuse, a somewhat time-consuming process that limited arquebusiers to a few shots per minute but allowed better penetration of armor than an arrow. For Nobunaga and leyasu, the arquebus represented another powerful implement in the toolkit of civil war.

The conflict with Takeda Katsuyori became increasingly heated in 1575, a development worth examining in some detail because it represents the conclusion to one of the most significant military conflicts of the period: the resistance of the Takeda to Oda Nobunaga and the destruction of that resistance. It also involved perhaps the most famous battle in the history of firearms in Japan, at Nagashino Castle in Mikawa. leyasu sent his vassal Okudaira Nobumasa (1555—1615) to protect Nagashino Castle, a fortress leyasu had taken from the Takeda in the wake of Shingen’s death. This was an interesting choice. Nobumasa was a recently acquired vassal who had once sworn fealty to leyasu’s boyhood captors and later served Takeda Shingen. Holding Nagashino Castle, strategically located halfway between leyasu’s old base, Okazaki, and his new base, Hamamatsu, was perhaps an opportunity for Nobumasa to prove himself to leyasu. This task was made easier in the following month when Nobunaga gave a substantial cache of provisions to leyasu, who directed that they be stored at Nagashino.25 This illustrates the way in which successful generals like leyasu and Nobunaga enlisted the vassals of defeated enemies and socialized them to their new roles by giving them responsibility; such socialization was often cemented through gift giving, making material culture the glue of the expansion of the feudal and military networks that sustained long periods of warfare.

Katsuyori played his hand and launched a major invasion of Mikawa soon after leyasu’s reinforcement of Nagashino, moving 15,000 men toward the castle and burning two towns along the way on June 9, 1575 (Tensho 3/5/1). He divided the majority of his troops into eight groups and surrounded the castle, placing his own headquarters, with a guard of 3,000 troops, on a nearby mountain. Okudaira Nobumasa had only 500 men with which to protect the castle. leyasu must have received rapid warning of Katsuyori’s move, as he quickly launched his army out of Okazaki Castle, where he had been staying with his son. He left 7,000 men behind as a reserve force to protect the fortress and headed toward Nagashino with a mere 5,000 men. Fortunately, Nobunaga sent a much larger force in support, seeing this battle as an opportunity to deal a fatal blow to the Takeda. leyasu’s men joined with Nobunaga’s outside of Nagashino on June 26 (Tensho 3/5/18), bringing their joint forces to almost 38,000 men. Using a combination of quickly constructed but effective wooden barricades, superior numbers, the firepower of archers and arquebusiers, and strategic maneuvering to contain Katsuyori’s cavalry, the Oda-Tokugawa force obliterated the Takeda army, with reports of the Takeda losses ranging from the thousands to the tens of thousands.26 Arquebusiers seem to have been used to particularly good effect, with some later sources claiming that Nobunaga (and leyasu) pioneered the use of volley fire in this battle.27 Katsuyori himself escaped to his home province of Kai, while Nobunaga returned to Gifu to relish his victories. leyasu, at Nobunaga’s request, visited him there soon after to show gratitude for his decisive support. According to a later hagiography of leyasu, Nobunaga reportedly came out of the castle as leyasu and his band approached, and seeing them draw near the entryway, cried out ‘You’re not growing beards, are you?’ to which one of the Tokugawa vassals jovially replied, ‘No my Lord, this is just the stubble of Nagashino.’28

leyasu soon returned to Hamamatsu Castle, but wasted no time in taking advantage of the recent victory to go on the offensive against remaining Takeda forces. In 1575, he invaded Suruga and began burning everything in sight. He also ordered his commanders to launch assaults on a number of Takeda fortresses.29 Meanwhile, Oda Nobunaga sent Nobutada (1557-1582), his eldest son, to command an assault on a major Takeda stronghold in the mountains. leyasu supported the effort by dispatching Okudaira Nobumasa, who had so recently proven himself as the guardian of Nagashino Castle, to assist Nobutada, and their combined forces were successful. In 1576, leyasu ordered Nobumasa to repair Shinshiro Castle (present-day Shinshiro City in Aichi Prefecture) and made him lord of the keep. He also gave his oldest daughter, Kamehime (1560—1625), to Nobumasa in marriage, effectively

The Tokugawa storehouse 377 rewarding him and binding him to Tokugawa service in one move. Gifts of people, too, could be used to cement alliances, as in the hostage experience of leyasu’s childhood, or in this and many similar examples of daughters trafficked in the name of marriage politics.30

Nobunaga decided in early 1582 to attack Katsuyori from multiple directions. He took the first step by launching his armies into Kai out of Mino, leyasu followed suit and launched his own forces from Hamamatsu. The neighboring house of Hojo attacked from the east and the Oda vassals the Kanamori from the north. One by one the Takeda’s fortifications fell, in some cases as a result of military action, but in a few examples as a result of Takeda vassals surrendering and opening the gates wide to the invading forces. All this was, apparently, too much for Katsuyori, who ended his own life and the life of his son on April 3, 1582 (Tensho 10/3/11). leyasu soon after met with Nobunaga’s son Nobutada, who had been commanding the Oda forces in Kai.31 Nobunaga then arrived to verify the Takeda defeat by examining the heads, a common practice among warlords in this period.32 On April 18 (Tensho 10/3/25), leyasu wrote to one of his vassals to share the news, noting ‘Katsuyori was decisively beaten.’33

Having orchestrated the destruction of the Takeda, Nobunaga next turned to a review of his newly acquired territory and the division of the spoils. He rewarded leyasu with the entire province of Suruga, further extending Tokugawa lands to the east and giving him control over the entire coast from the edge of Owari to Suruga Bay. leyasu had the opportunity to thank Nobunaga on May 4 (Tensho 10/4/12), when the latter completed his military tour of Kai (stopping along the way to take in the views of Mt. Fuji). Nobunaga came to Suruga and met leyasu, now officially enfeoffed by Nobunaga for the first time. leyasu threw a banquet and gave Nobunaga a series of gifts, including a large sword (ichimonji), a Yoshimitsu short sword, and three good horses.34

The inclusion of the swords among these gifts was no accident. Though swords have come to be thought of as deadly weapons and as symbols of warrior identity (or the ‘soul of the samurai,’ in the words of the modern Japanese author Inazo Nitobe35), documents from the sixteenth century clearly indicate that the primary role of swords in the lives of warriors was as gifts.36 leyasu’s extant letters, which probably represent only a fraction of his total output as a letter writer, mention no less than 17 swords received as gifts; other contemporaneous sources mention additional examples as well, making leyasu’s receipt of swords a major theme in records of his life. In addition to receiving swords, leyasu’s letters and other sources mention more than 14 occasions on which he gifted swords to cement alliances or improve relations. For example, in 1573, he gave a sword to his ally Uesugi Kenshin (1530—1578) to celebrate the end of their long struggle against Takeda Shingen. In 1599, leyasu gave swords and horses to Shimazu Yoshihiro to celebrate his return from the campaigns in Korea. leyasu even sent swords and horses as a gift to the King of Cambodia in 1603, in response to a request for trade and exchange.37 In 1615, after destroying the residents of Osaka Castle and finally solidifying Tokugawa rule, he sent vassals into the rubble to retrieve the remains of objects associated with his defeated enemies, particularly famous Chinese ceramics and swords. He then commanded a sword maker to re-forge the recovered swords that had been damaged in the castle’s destruction.38

In light of these many traces of the movement of swords in and out of leyasu’s possession as he developed and strengthened his social networks in the years leading up to Sekigahara, it is perhaps not surprising that when he died in 1616, more than 1,000 swords were recorded in the Record of Utensils Inherited from Sumpu Castle. These objects represent a kind of stratigraphy of social relations between elite warriors. And although it would be pushing the evidence too far to argue a causal relationship, it is also worth noting that wearing a long and short sword became the primary marker of warrior social status throughout the early modern period. leyasu’s large collection of swords represents this transference of the sword from its role as a kind of social lubricant to its symbolic function as a sign of samurai identity in the gradual shift from medieval to early modern Japan.

China in the Tokugawa storehouse

One of the most powerful images of early modern Japan is that of the ‘closed country’ (sakoku): a phrase that came, even in Japanese, to dominate modern discussion ofjapan’s ostensible insularity before the ‘opening’ in the 1850s. It is true that the policies of the Tokugawa government did, beginning in the 1630s, prohibit Japanese travel abroad, access to Japanese ports by most foreign merchants and dignitaries, and circulation of most Western books. However, the long sixteenth century itself, the crucible ofjapan’s early modernity, was the most international period in the nation’s pre-modern history. In addition to the arrival of Europeans mentioned above, leyasu and other elite warlords of his age imagined China and Korea to be sources of civilization that could be strategically drawn upon to send certain messages about cultural authority to their peers. Collecting objects from China and Korea, using them in tea gatherings and other semi-public gatherings, and supporting new forms of cultural production modeled on Chinese and Korean antecedents all emerged as powerful methods of demonstrating cultivation among warrior elites in the long sixteenth century. As a result, the Tokugawa storehouse, far from being nativist or somehow cloistered, is a profoundly international assemblage.

The dominant power in East Asia — and, some would argue, the center of the global economy up to the sixteenth century - was of course China, and shifts in Chinese imperial regulation of trade had a major impact on Japan’s international commerce and relations.39 During the latter half ofjapan’s medieval period, China’s Ming dynasty (1368—1644) tightly controlled trade in the region, and some of the Ashikaga shoguns managed to join this system by acknowledging Chinese suzerainty and positioning themselves, andjapan, in the context of the Chinese tributary system. This ‘tally trade’ with China deteriorated in 1547, and the Ming cut off relations with Japan in 1557, partially because of the rise of piratical activities by a heterogeneous group of seafarers known as the ¡rafeo.40 The withdrawal of official Ming control (and the Ming court’s authorization of private trade in 1560) only opened up space for private maritime trade to occur in East Asia, with particular focus on Chinese silk and Japanese silver among many other materials.41 It was through this somewhat unregulated seascape that European traders and missionaries sailed to Japan, often on Chinese ships; likewise, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and wako seafarers plied their trade across the waters in this period, and material traces of this international exchange can be seen throughout the Tokugawa storehouse.

While serving Oda Nobunaga, leyasu came into contact with foreign missionaries and traders on numerous occasions, but was far less well traveled than many of his peers. Although he did acquire a number of imported European objects - including Portuguese-manufactured helmets and other pieces of metal armor; a clock made in Spain in 1581; and a pencil from Mexico — more important in the trajectory of his career were his regular encounters with, and apparent interest in, artworks and other cultural products from China. His collection came to include many varieties of ceramics used in the culture of tea: objects that came to Japan through the trade in Buddhist material culture, or on the trading vessels that frequently docked in Sakai and which included both art from the continent and saltpeter for gunpowder. One of leyasu’s most significant trips outside his favored haunts of his home domains and Kyoto occurred in 1582, after the defeat of the Takeda. Nobunaga, having calmed central Japan, aimed his sights on the island of Shikoku, but was distracted by news from his lieutenant Hashiba Hideyoshi, who was in the middle of a struggle against the mighty clan of Mori in southern Honshu. Hideyoshi reported that the Mori were emerging in force and that he would need reinforcements. From Nobunaga’s perspective, this was a golden opportunity to crush a resilient opponent. He therefore ordered six of his generals to reinforce Hideyoshi, and he began preparations to travel to the west himself. Plans for the invasion of Shikoku also continued, meaning that he would mount two major offensives simultaneously, a clear sign of his strength and confidence. He left for Kyoto with a small group of retainers, secure in his control of the central region of the country.42

At this same time, leyasu was departing Kyoto and on his way to Sakai.43 He arrived in the port city on June 19 (Tensho 10/5/29), the same day that Nobunaga entered Kyoto. He soon met with two Sakai merchants and tea masters who also served as sources of information and providers of tea utensils: Imai Sokyti and Tsuda Sogyu.44 Thereafter, he participated in another tea gathering followed by an appearance at a dance performance and a banquet in the evening. These encounters point to the way in which material culture facilitated social and political interactions that were essential to the military actions of men like Nobunaga and leyasu. Tea masters like Sokyu and Sôgyû were well connected in the city of Sakai and therefore had news and gossip from across the archipelago. As merchants with significant incomes and with easy access to the movement of material and visual culture through the port city that was their home, they also owned substantial collections of art used in tea gatherings, including ceramic treasures originally from China and Korea as well as new varieties made in Japan. The objects enabled these sorts of meetings between men of different statuses, allowing discussions and deals around the rituals of tea preparation and consumption that were not recorded in the documentary record but which are marked in the Tokugawa storehouse by the circulation of artworks in and out of Sakai tea masters’ and warlords’ collections.

As leyasu was acquiring information from the tea masters of Sakai, his senior ally Nobunaga was relaxing in Kyoto, enjoying the prestigious attention of the imperial court. Nobunaga’s vassal Akechi Mitsuhide, however, chose this moment to attempt to seize power from his lord in perhaps the most famous act of treason in Japanese history. Mitsuhide led an army of 13,000 men into the capital in the morning hours and attacked the temple in which Nobunaga was sleeping with his men. Nobunaga died, as did his son Nobutada, who was staying in another residence in Kyoto which was also attacked. The confidence of Nobunaga’s vassals and allies and the sense of stability felt by many observers disappeared in a moment; many citizens of Kyoto, afraid of further violence, retreated to the imperial court in search of sanctuary. leyasu, hearing of the attack while in Sakai, fled to his home domain.45

The small decisions and chance encounters that led to leyasu’s separation from Nobunaga at this particular historical moment had far-reaching consequences. If leyasu had been at Nobunaga’s side in Kyoto, as he often was in those days of armed conflict and the politics of détente, he surely would have lost his life. The chance to share tea, examine fine Chinese art, and consort with knowledgeable merchants in Sakai, however, drew him down a different path. Objects such as the Chinese art desired by tea practitioners played a major role in shaping the range of possibilities in the historical past. Thus, the significance of these small moments of cultural practice is striking in the larger picture of national politics; or perhaps, it is better to say that encounters such as this one prove the lie that cultural practices occur outside the realm of national politics. Historians often comment on the fact that unlike Nobunaga and Hideyoshi, who were such devoted students of tea ritual, leyasu was only a grudging participant. At the time of the Honnôji attack, however, it is not too much of an exaggeration to say that tea saved leyasu’s life by drawing him away from the capital and into Sakai.

leyasu had numerous opportunities to acquire Chinese art from tea masters like Imai Sôkyû and Tsuda Sôgyû — as well as through other intermediaries, from vassals, and as loot — in the years after Nobunaga’s assassination. His peer, the aforementioned Hideyoshi, took over the project of pacifyingjapan and left leyasu in relative peace for several years. As an independent warlord until 1586, when he swore fealty to Hideyoshi, leyasu acquired artworks primarily as gifts. In fact, leyasu’s ritualized agreement with Hideyoshi, in which he traveled to Hideyoshi’s new fortress at Osaka Castle and declared his allegiance in front of an assembly of warlords, was marked by an exchange of gifts in which leyasu received a ceramic tea jar (either Chinese or Southeast Asian), two swords, a falcon, and a formal coat (haori); and leyasu gave Hideyoshi ten horses, 100 gold pieces, and a long sword.46 Two years later, as a reward for arbitrating a disagreement between Hideyoshi and warlords in northern Japan, leyasu received a series of valuable gifts: a Hakata tea stand; an Imogashira (potato-head) water jar; a tea caddy previously owned by the warlord Kanamori Arishige; a tentmoku tea bowl previously owned by the tea master Sen no Rikyu (Sen Soeki); and a large quantity of rice.47

The tea bowl pictured in Figure 15.1 was also previously owned by the tea master Sen no Rikyu (1522-1591), a merchant from Sakai who came to be the most influential teacher of tea practice and curator of tea utensils in Hideyoshi’s employ. The bowl, made in China during the Ming Dynasty, was named ‘Araki’ after its previous owner, the warrior Araki Murashige (1535—1586), a retainer of Oda Nobunaga’s who had fallen from grace, lost his domain, and later became an ardent tea practitioner. Araki gave the bowl to Rikyu, who presumably gave or sold it to leyasu. The piece consists of a shallow hemisphere on a tapered foot, with a slightly undulating lip and a largely symmetrical shape. Scrolling grass designs and an elegant exterior band appear on the surface of the bowl under a milky haze, an effect created by applying cobalt to the clay with a brush underneath a thick coat of whitish, translucent glaze. The visible lacquer repairs to the lip of the bowl were appreciated by tea practitioners as marks of the age and even the individual biography of the vessel.48 Although this tea bowl came, over time, to be considered one of the greatest Chinese ceramic treasures in all of Japan because of its illustrious pedigree, it is only one small piece in the significant import

Tea bowl named ‘Araki,’ sixteenth century

Figure 15.1 Tea bowl named ‘Araki,’ sixteenth century.

Source: Tea bowl named “Araki,” Chinese, Ming Dynasty, sixteenth century, Tokugawa Art Museum, flower scroll design, blue and white porcelain. Courtesy of the Tokugawa Art Museum, Nagoya, Japan. Photo © The Tokugawa Art Museum Image Archives/DNPartcom. of ceramics and other forms of visual and material culture from China in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries.49

As leyasu’s career advanced, his interest in Chinese visual and material culture, not to mention books, only increased. It grew particularly ardent after 1590, when Hideyoshi transferred leyasu to the eastern provinces known as the Kanto, based in the small town of Edo. In 1593, for example, leyasu met with the Buddhist monk and budding China scholar Fujiwara Seika, who presented a lecture on the Chinese text Essentials of Good Government (Ch: Zhenguan zhengyao; J: fdgan Seiyo; Tang Dynasty, seventh century).50 Hideyoshi’s death in 1598 presented leyasu with the opportunity to occupy center stage. His victory in the titanic Battle of Sekigahara in 1600 and his appointment by the imperial court to the position of shogun in 1603 empowered him to establish a new military government in Edo. After passing that position to his son Tokugawa Hidetada (1579—1632) in 1605, leyasu hired Seika’s student Hayashi Kazan in 1606 as an expert in all things Chinese. Kazan lectured to leyasu and Hidetada on various Chinese classics; he was instructed to write diplomatic correspondence and to mind the growing Tokugawa library; and he was used, along with a range of Buddhist priests, as a kind of policy writer who drafted documents that would eventually be issued as key pieces of shogunal law.31 leyasu’s engagement with Chinese things therefore became the basis for early Tokugawa shogunal policy.

leyasu also became a collector of Chinese books, as recorded by the physician Otasaka Bokusai (1578-1655). According to Bokusai, leyasu’s nine favorite books consisted of two Chinese Confucian works (the Analects and the Doctrine of the Mean), two Chinese historical works (Records of the Grand Historian and the Book of Han), two Chinese military guides (The Six Secret Teachings and The Three Strategies), the aforementioned Chinese text Essentials of Good Government, and just two Japanese texts, both focusing on governance: Procedures of the Engi Era (Engishiki) and Mirror of the East (Azuma Kagamt). In 1599, leyasu ordered the printing of six books, five of them Chinese, by the Zen monk Kanshitsu Genkitsu at Fushimi. Again in the 1610s, leyasu ordered underlings to print two different Chinese texts, one a compilation of canonical Buddhist extracts and the other a collection of gems from the Chinese classics.33 The Tokugawa storehouse thus contained material and visual culture from China, part of leyasu’s broad attempt to draw on what I have elsewhere called the institutional authority of Chinese civilization, but also an actual library of classic Chinese texts that became the foundation for shogunal policy and scholarship.54

leyasu’s apotheosis and the probate of the Tokugawa storehouse

In 1616, at the age of 74, leyasu passed away as one of the last leaders of a generation that had fought in the endemic civil wars of the sixteenth century. He was in many ways entirely typical of a certain class of elite warriors: a difficult childhood, involving the loss of close family members and a long period spent

The Tokugawa storehouse 383 as a hostage, was not at all uncommon in the 1530s, 1540s, and 1550s.33 His struggles to put down rebellions, avoid invasions from hostile neighbors, and ally himself with strong warlords as part of a grand strategy of survival, too, were characteristic of many warlords of the age, albeit unusually successful in his case. However, unlike many warlords — such as Nobunaga betrayed in the prime of his life along with his heir, or Hideyoshi, who died with just one young son and no stable means of preserving power for him - leyasu had many children, successfully placed them in positions of power and influence long before his death, and in general succeeded where his predecessors had failed in setting up a political system that would perpetuate the rule of his family for generations. Although this system would come, over time, to produce socio-economic effects praised by modern observers as being distinctively early modern in their progress toward the present — urbanization, diverse commercial activities, increasingly sophisticated transportation networks, national diffusion of popular culture, and so on - Tokugawa leyasu’s collection of things points to a wartime culture of possession and display that continued well into the Tokugawa era of peace. leyasu collected swords and guns because these were the tools by which he amassed and armed his armies. He collected Chinese things to legitimize his own rule, an appeal to precedent and the mythohistorical stability of China’s golden past.

The influence of the Tokugawa storehouse continued well after leyasu’s death. In 1616, he was, according to his prior arrangements, first enshrined as the deity Tosho Daigongen (‘Light of the East, the Ultimate Made Manifest’) on Mt. Kuno, east of his final resting place at Sumpu Castle. Later, his grandson and the third shogun, Tokugawa lemitsu (1604—1651), constructed a colossal shrine and temple complex on Mt. Nikko, north of Edo. Both these shrines, as well as the many smaller shrines to leyasu that his descendants and other warriors built in nearly every domain in early modern Japan, became sites for the ritual storage and usage of artworks associated with leyasu during his life. Until the collapse of the Tokugawa regime in 1868, these shrines to leyasu held private rituals and in some cases public festivals at which leyasu’s spirit was called forth, often using an inherited or donated object as ritual vessel.36 Many shoguns made semi-annual pilgrimages to Nikko to mark the day of leyasu’s death.57 Foreign embassies from Ryukyu and Korea also made pilgrimages to Nikko, ostensibly at their own request but in fact to emphasize Tokugawa hegemony.38 Likewise, elite warriors from across the country petitioned the government for the right to go on pilgrimages to the main shrine at Nikko, a privilege that was only doled out to certain applicants. This is not surprising considering the huge amounts of money the Tokugawa government spent to maintain and repair the structures at Nikko, which amounted to more than half of all government expenditures in the late seventeenth century.59 The objects collected by leyasu over the course of his life and carefully distributed to his descendants and shrines after his death therefore continued to compel and shape the actions of Japan’s elites more than a century after he was buried.

leyasu’s apotheosis and the transference of his collection into the storehouses and display rooms of shoguns, Tokugawa branch house leaders, and state-sponsored shrines represent a kind of reversal of, or perhaps an inverse precursor to, Benjamin’s well-known conception of the decline of the aura of the work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction.60 Objects that had been instrumentally significant in the sixteenth century as tools of war and diplomacy — swords exchanged as gifts, arquebuses fired in battle, Chinese ceramics used in tea gatherings with informants - became mysterious again, ‘parasitically dependen[t] on ritual’ and infused with the cult value of the worship of a new deity.61

The objects that leyasu acquired and then bequeathed to his descendants before his own apotheosis represent a profoundly different sort of assemblage from Benjamin’s haphazard collection of images, poems, postcards, and urban refuse. But these distinctions reveal the late medieval origins of Japan’s early modernity, steeped in the technologies of war, built on fragile and fraught alliances among competing families and social groups, and turning always to the past and to the continent for the legitimacy and authority that would allow a government to finally stabilize Japan after a century of conflict.


  • 1 See, for example, Walter Benjamin, Charles Baudelaire: A Lyric Poet in the Era of High Capitalism (London and New York: Verso, 1997); idem, The Writer of Modern Life: Essays on Charles Baudelaire (Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2006); and idem, The Arcades Project (Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1999).
  • 2 Erdmut Wizisla, ‘Preface,’ in Walter Benjamin’s Archive: Images, Texts, Signs, ed. Urusla Marx, Gudrun Schwarz, Michael Schwarz, and Erdmut Wizisla (London and New York: Verso, 2007), 2.
  • 3 Susan B. Hanley, Everyday Things in Premodern Japan: The Hidden Legacy of Material Culture (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999). While many art historians have examined the history of material and visual culture in Japan’s early modern period, with considerable attention to the aesthetic and formal properties of the objects themselves, few historians writing about this period in English have included things in their research. A few exceptions include Peter Kornicki, The Book in Japan: A Cultural History from the Beginnings to the Nineteenth Century (Leiden: Brill, 1998); Eric C. Rath, The Ethos of Noli: Actors and Their Art (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Asia Center, 2004); Morgan Pitelka, Handmade Culture: Raku Potters, Patrons, and Tea Practitioners in Japan (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2005); Mary Elizabeth Berry, Japan in Print: Information and Nation in the Early Modern Period (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006); and Constantine Nomikos Vaporis, Tour of Duty: Samurai, Military Service in Edo, and the Culture of Early Modern Japan (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2008).
  • 4 This phrase is borrowed from David Spafford, The Persistent Medieval: Land and Place in Eastern Japan, 1450—1525 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, forthcoming). Spafford and I have worked with other historians of pre-modern Japan - David Eason, Tomoko Kitagawa, Peter Shapinsky, to name a few - on a collaborative project to rethink the ‘age of unification’ in less teleological terms.

One recent work that addresses the agency of a specific category of Japanese material culture - Buddhist objects — is Fabio Rambelli, Buddhist Materiality: A Cultural History of Objects in Japanese Buddhism (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2007).

J. F. Moran, The Japanese and the Jesuits: Alessandro Valignano in Sixteenth-Century Japan (London: Routledge, 1993).

Michael Cooper, ed., They Came to Japan: An Anthology of European Reports on Japan, 1543-1640 (Ann Arbor: Michigan Classics in Japanese Studies, 1995; first edition, 1965), 261—262.


Walter Benjamin, ‘The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction,’ in Illuminations: Essays and Reflections, ed. Hannah Arendt (New York: Schocken Books, 1978), 234.

Benjamin, The Arcades Project, 211.

Recorded in numerous documents, including Kan’ei shoka keizuden, on Tenbun 11/12/26. leyasu’s birth year has frequently been recorded as 1542 because most of Tenbun 11 corresponds to 1542. The twelfth month, however, overlaps with the beginning of 1543, so leyasu’s birthday in the Western calendar is actually January 31, 1543. See José Miguel Pinto do Santos, ‘leyasu (1542—1616) Versus leyasu (1543—1616): Calendrical Conversion Tables for the 16th and 17th Centuries,’ Bulletin of Portuguese/Japanese Studies 5 (2003): 9—26, for a detailed examination of this problem. I have converted the date for this entry, and all other dates used in this essay to their equivalents in the Western calendar.

See Mary Elizabeth Berry, The Culture of Civil War in Kyoto (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997) for more on the experience of life in the capital during this period.

One recent study that includes information on this period of civil war is Jeroen Larners, Japonius Tyrannus: The Japanese Warlord Oda Nobunaga Reconsidered (Amsterdam: Hotei Publishing, 2000).

See Carol Richmond Tsang, War and Faith: Ikkô Ikki in Late Muromachi Japan (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Asia Center, 2007) for more information on this topic.

Hora Tornio, Tanegashima jû: denrai to sono eikyô (Tokyo: Awaji Shobô Shinsha, 1958), appendix. Here and below I quote from the English edition, Tanegashima: The Arrival of Europe in Japan, trans. Olof G. Lidin (Copenhagen, Denmark: NIAS Press, 2002), 36-42.

Tornio, Tanegashima, 40.

Thomas Conlan introduces recent Japanese findings on the history of firearms as well as his own research into the role of technology in Japanese warfare in ‘Instruments of Change: Organizational Technology and the Consolidation of Regional Power in Japan, 1333—1600,’ in War and State Building in Medieval Japan, ed. John A. Ferejohn and Frances McCall Rosenbluth (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2010), 124—158. Particularly useful is the section (145—148) that discusses the many references in the documentary record to earlier forms of East Asian firearms such as ‘fire dragon spears’ and ‘fire arrows.’ Conlan argues that the introduction of the arquebus was not particularly significant in the process of unification; rather, shifts in military tactics and military organization beginning in the fourteenth century and picking up steam in the fifteenth century proved more significant in the late sixteenth-century centralization of power. I would maintain, however, that as a new form of military material culture, the introduction of the arquebus in 1543 and its gradual dissemination across the archipelago in the next half century deserves our attention even if it did not significantly impact tactics.

Again, see Larners, Japonius Tyrannus, on these events.

This process, and his ongoing reorganization of resources in Mikawa, can be seen in a series of commendation documents issued in 1569, helpfully summarized and charted by Nakamura Koya in Tokugawa leyasu monjo no kenkyu (Tokyo: Nihon Gakujutsu Shinkokai, 1958), 1: 151—153.

Morgan Pitelka, ‘Biography and Japanese History: Writing (and Contesting) the Story of Tokugawa leyasu (1543—1616),’ in Asia in the Classroom and the Academy: New Ideas in Scholarship and Teaching, ed. Suzanne Barnett (forthcoming).

Udagawa Takehisa, Teppo to sengokn kassen (Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kobunkan, 2002), 114.

Matsudaira letada, letada nikki (Kyoto: Kinsen Shoten, 1968), 1: 49.

Conlan, ‘Instruments of Change,’ 131—135.

Arquebus by Noda Kiyotaka, Tokugawa period, 1611, Collection of the Tokugawa Art Museum, Nagoya. See items 69—74 in Tokugawa Bijutsukan, leyasu no isan: Sumpu owakemono (Nagoya: Tokugawa Bijutsukan, 1992).

Most of these events are recorded in Tokyo Daigaku Shiryo Hensanjo, ed, Dai Nihon shiryo, 10: 16, events of the fourth, seventh, and eighth months of Tensho 1 (Tokyo: Shiryo Hensan Gakkari, 1968). In English, see Lamers’s useful summary and analysis, Japonius Tyrannus, 95—98.

Jeroen Larners clearly described this battle, as well as conflicting reports regarding its progress, in his study ofNobunaga: Japonius Tyrannus, 111—114. Also useful is the summary in Miyamoto Yoshimi, ‘Nagashino no tatakai,’ in Tokugawa leyasu jiten, ed. Fujino Tamotsu et al. (Tokyo: Shinjinbutsu Oraisha, 1990), 207—211. See, for example, Ota Gyiiichi, Chronicle of Lord Nobunaga, ed. and trans. J. S. A. Elisonas and Jeroen Larners (Leiden: Brill, 2011), 222—227.

Okubo Hikozaemon (Tadataka), ‘Mikawa monogatari,’ in Nihon shisd taikei, ed. Otsuka Mitsunobu (Tokyo: Iwanami Shoten, 1974), 26: 130.


Mentioned in ibid, for 1575/Tensho 4/7.

Matsudaira, letada nikki, 1: 125.

Okubo, ‘Mikawa monogatari,’ 139—140.

Nakamura, Tokugawa leyasu monjo no kenkyu, 1: 282—283.

Narushima Motonao, ed., Tdshdgu onjikki vol. 38 of Tokugawa jikki, ed. Kuroita Katsumi (Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kobunkan, 1964), 46.

Inazo Nitobe, Bushido, the Soul of Japan (New York: G. Putnam, 1905 [originally 1900]).

Conlan discusses the shift in warrior usage of weapons on the battlefield from swords to pikes in ‘Instruments of Change.’ It is also worth noting that even when used less in combat, swords were still drawn on the battlefield for the still highly ritualized action of beheading a defeated enemy.

Nakamura, Tokugawa leyasu monjo no kenkyu, 3: 358.

Ono Shinji, ed., ‘Sumpuki,’ in leyasu shiryo shu (Tokyo: Jinbutsu Oraisha, 1965), 205. See Andre Guilder Frank, ReORlENT: Global Economy in the Asian Age (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998) and Kenneth Pomeranz, The Great Divergence: China, Europe, and the Making of the Modern World Economy (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2000) on China’s centrality in global trade.

For more on this process, see Yasunori Arano, Masatoshi Ishii, and Shosuke Murai, eds., Wako to ‘Nihon kokud’ (Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kobunkan, 2010).

Igawa Kenji, Daikdkai jidai no Higashi Ajia (Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kobunkan, 2007); Kobata Atsushi, Kingin bdekishi no kenkyu (Tokyo: Hosei Daigaku Shuppankyoku, 1976).

These events are described in the hagiographic but still useful Okubo, ‘Mikawa monogatari,’ and many other sources recording the events of that era. The Japanese literature on the event at Honnoji is extensive, but Lamers’s English exposition is as clear and compelling as any previous scholarship: Japonius Tyrannus, 215-216.

Okubo, ‘Mikawa monogatari,’ 140—141.

See Imai Sokyu’s comments in the extracts from his diary, published as Nagashima Fukutaro, ed., Imai Sokyu chanoyu nikki nukigaki, in Chado koten zenshu, ed. Sen Soshitsu, vol. 10 (Kyoto: Tankosha, 1957—1962; reprint, 1977), 34; and Tsuda Sogyu’s comments in Nagashima Fukutaro, ed., Tenndjiya kaiki, in Chado koten zenshu, vols. 7 and 8 (Kyoto: Tankosha, 1957—1962; reprint, 1977), 364. Both also note the assassination of Nobunaga the following day.

Okamoto Ryoichi, ‘Hideyoshi no jidai,’ in Momoyama no kaika, ed. Hayashiya Tatsusaburo, Kyoto no rekishi, vol. 4 (Kyoto: Kyotoshi, 1971), 234-235.

Matsudaira, letada nikki, 2: 27.

Ibid., 2: 66—67.

Item 166 in Tokugawa Bijutsukan, leyasu no isan, 83 and 235. See also references to this piece in the 1660 catalog of the masterpieces of the shogunal collection, ‘Ganka meibutsuki,’ reproduced in Tokugawa Bijutsukan and Nezu Bijutsukan, Meibutsuki: Ganka meibutsuki to Ryuei gyobutsu (Nagoya and Tokyo: Tokugawa Bijutsukan and Nezu Bijutsukan, 1988), 207.

Chuimei Ho, ‘The Ceramic Trade in Asia, 1602—82,’ in Japanese Industrialization and the Asian Economy, ed. A. J. H. Latham and Heita Kawakatsu (London: Routledge, 1994), 35—38.

Herman Ooms, Tokugawa Ideology: Early Constructs, 1570—1580 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1985), 112. In note 3 on the same page, Ooms notes that emperors and shoguns had heard such lectures on this text on many occasions in the past. See also Seika monjo, Bunroku 2/12, cited in Nakamura Koya, Tokugawa leyasu kd den (Tokyo: Kodansha, 1965), 286; and his ‘Tokugawa leyasu ko shosai nempu,’ in the same volume but numbered separately, 82.

See Boot’s useful summary of Razan’s services to the bakufu: Willem Jan Boot, ‘The Adoption and Adaptation of Neo-Confucianism in Japan: The Role of Fujiwara Seika and Hayashi Razan,’ (Dlit., University of Leiden, 1983), 184—186. Ryusaku Tsunoda, William Theodore de Bary, and Donald Keene, eds., Sources of Japanese Tradition (New York: Columbia University Press, 1958), 1: 332. leyasu was also active as a collector of books, a founder of libraries, and as a supporter of publishing and circulation of books. See Peter F. Kornicki, ‘Books in the Service of Politics: Tokugawa leyasu as Custodian of the Books of Japan,’ The journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, Series 3, 18:1 (2008): 71—82, for more information.

Pitelka, ‘The Empire ofThings: Tokugawa leyasu’s Material Legacy and Cultural Profile,’ Japanese Studies 29:1 (2009): 23.

Umai Yukiko, 'Kinsei shonin seido no rekishiteki zentei,’ Kokushi danwakai zasshi 40 (1999): 1-20. Many thanks to David Eason for this reference.

See the discussion of swords in Nikko, for example: Nikko Toshogu, Nikko Toshogu no hdmotsu (Nikko, Japan: Nikko Toshogu Shamusho, undated booklet), 84-85.

Endo Jun, ‘The Early Modern Period: In Search of a Shinto Identity,’ in Shinto, a Short History, ed. Mark Teeuwen et al. (New York: Routledge, 2003), 117. Ronald P. Toby, State and Diplomacy in Early Modern Japan: Asia in the Development of the Tokugawa Bakufu (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1984), 204. Beatrice Bodart-Bailey, The Dog Shogun: The Personality and Policies of Tokugawa Tsunayoshi (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2006), 186.

Benjamin, ‘The Work of Art in the Age ofMechanical Reproduction’; also idem, The Work of Art in the Age of its Technological Reproducibility and Other Writings on Media (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 2008).

Benjamin, ‘The Work of Art in the Age ofMechanical Reproduction,’ 224.

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