Emperor Go-Murakami

Emperor Go-Murakami

. He reigned from Sumiyoshi, Ōsaka, Yoshino, Nara, and other temporary locations.

This 14th century sovereign was named after the 10th century Emperor Murakami and "go-" (後), translates literally as "later;" and thus, he is sometimes called the "Later Emperor Murakami". The Japanese word "go" has also been translated to mean the "second one;" and in some older sources, this emperor may be identified as "Murakami, the second," or as "Murakami II."


He was the seventh son of Emperor Go-Daigo
*Empress Consort ("kōgō"): Fujiwara (Unknown name)
*Court Lady: Fujiwara ?? (藤原勝子)
**First son: Imperial Prince Yutanari (寛成親王) (Emperor Chōkei)
**Second son: Imperial Prince Hironari (熙成親王) (Emperor Go-Kameyama)
**Fifth son: Imperial Prince ?? (泰成親王)
*Court Lady: Minamoto ?? (源顕子)
**First daughter: Imperial Princess ?? (憲子内親王) (Empress Dowager ?? (新宣陽門院))
*Consort: Daughter of ?? (中原師治)
**Third son: Imperial Prince ?? (惟成親王)
*Consort: Daughter of ?? (越智家栄)
**Fourth son: Imperial Prince ?? (師成親王)
**Sixth son: Imperial Prince Yoshinari (良成親王)
**Seventh son: Imperial Prince ??? (説成親王)
*Consort: Unknown
**Eighth son: Imperial Prince ?? (長成親王)

Events of Go-Murakami's life

He lived during the turbulent years of conflict between rival claimants to the Chrysanthemum Throne. The contested succession pitted what were known as the Northern and Southern Courts against each other. These years are also known as the Nanboku-chō period. When Emperor Go-Daigo began his Kemmu Restoration, the still very young prince, along with Kitabatake Akiie, in 1333 went to Tagajō in what is now Miyagi Prefecture, at the time Mutsu Province, to return the eastern samurai to their allegiance and destroy the remnants of the Hōjō clan. However, in 1335, because Ashikaga Takauji had raised a rebellion, the Emperor returned to the west along with Kitabatake Chikafusa, the father of Akiie, in order to defeat Takauji. When Takauji defeated them in Kyōto in 1336, they again returned to Mutsu Province. In 1337, because Tagajō was attacked, they returned yet again to the west, returning to Yoshino while constantly fighting battles.

Again, in 1338, they headed to Tagajō, but returned to Yoshino because of a storm. In 1339, he became Crown Prince.

On September 18 of that same year, he became emperor upon the abdication of Emperor Go-Daigo.

In 1348, Kō no Moronao attacked Yoshino, and the Emperor left for modern-day Nishiyoshino Village in Yoshino District, Nara Prefecture, which was then the Yamato Province.

In 1352, entering Otokoyama in Yamashiro Province, in the Battle of Shichijō Ōmiya, Kusunoki Masanori recovered Kyōto from Ashikaga Yoshiakira. At this time, the Retired Northern Emperors Emperor Kōgon, Emperor Kōmyō and Emperor Sukō were captured and imprisoned at Otokoyama. However, a month later, they had to abandon Kyōto after a counter-attack by Ashikaga.

They were confined to Otokoyama, but escaped to Kawachi Province during an attack by Yoshiakira, and a few months later returned to Yoshino.

In the twelfth month, eighth day of 1361, Hosokawa Kiyōji and Kusunoki Masanori, who had returned to the Southern Court's allegiance, attacked Kyōto, temporarily recovering it. But, Yoshiakira quickly responded, and they evacuated Kyōto 18 days later.

They continued trying to recover Kyōto, but the Southern Court's power was already weakening, and by the Emperor's death in 1368, Ashikaga Yoshimitsu was in power and the throne had been moved to Sumiyoshi.


"Kugyō" (公卿) is a collective term for the very few most powerful men attached to the court of the Emperor of Japan in pre-Meiji eras. Even during those years in which the court's actual influence outside the palace walls was minimal, the hierarchic organization persisted.

In general, this elite group included only three to four men at a time. These were hereditary courtiers whose experience and background would have brought them to the pinnacle of a life's career. During Go-Murakami's reign, this apex of the "Daijō-kan included:
* "Sadaijin"
* "Udaijin"
* "Nadaijin"
* "Dainagon"

Eras of Go-Murakami's reign

The years of Go-Murakami's reign are more specifically identified by more than one era name or "nengō".

:"Nanboku-chō" southern court
*Eras as reckoned by legitimate Court (as determined by Meiji rescript)
** "Engen" (1336-1340)
** "Kōkoku" (1340-1346)
** "Shōhei" (1346-1370)

:"Nanboku-chō" northern court
*Eras as reckoned by pretender Court (as determined by Meiji rescript)
** "Ryakuō" (1338-1342)
** "Kōei" (1342-1345)
** "Jōwa" (1345-1350)
** "Kan'ō" (1350-1352)
** "Bunna" (1352-1356)
** "Embun" (1356-1361)
** "Kōan" (1361-1362)
** "Jōji" (1362-1368)
** "Ōan" (1368-1375)


* Titsingh, Isaac, ed. (1834). [Siyun-sai Rin-siyo/Hayashi Gahō, 1652] "Nipon o daï itsi ran; ou, Annales des empereurs du Japon, tr. par M. Isaac Titsingh avec l'aide de plusieurs interprètes attachés au comptoir hollandais de Nangasaki; ouvrage re., complété et cor. sur l'original japonais-chinois, accompagné de notes et précédé d'un Aperçu d'histoire mythologique du Japon, par M. J. Klaproth. Paris: Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland. [http://books.google.com/books?id=18oNAAAAIAAJ&dq=nipon+o+dai+itsi+ran ...Click link for digitized, ful-text copy of this book (in French)]

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