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文化・歴史

Visiting places related to the Kamakura Shogunate - Hojo Tokimasa and Kajiwara Kagetoki

鎌倉殿とゆかりの地―北条時政と梶原景時のゆかりの地をめぐる

This time, we will be talking about Hojo Tokimasa, the father of the main character, Hojo Yoshitoki, and Yoritomo, who serves as a stable steward (the chief and person in charge of managing the horses being bred) and a samurai-dokoro shōji (a vice-minister who assists the betto). Introducing the places associated with Kajiwara Keitoki.

Spot 1 Place related to Tokimasa Hojo: Ishibashiyama Battlefield
Enter the side street from National Route 135 and walk about 100 meters until you see a stone monument reading ``Ishibashiyama Battlefield'' on a hill overlooking Sagami Bay. This is where Yoritomo fought against Oba Kagechika's army.

In response to King Mochihito's order to hunt down the Heike clan, Minamoto no Yoritomo raised an army at Nirayama in Izu, won the first battle against the Yamaki clan, and then advanced to Yugawara, Sagami Province, where he confronted Kagechika Oba's army and attacked Ishibashiyama. The battle will begin.

This battle begins with a "battle of words" between Tokimasa Hojo and Kagechika Oba. Tokimasa Hojo said, ``Oba was supposed to follow the Minamoto clan, so why is he bowing to Minamoto no Yoritomo, the direct descendant of the Minamoto clan?'' and Kagechika Oba also said, ``In the past, he was the master and servant, but from the Taira clan. "I owe you an enormous debt of gratitude, and I cannot betray you easily." (There are many memorable stories about Tokimasa Hojo, but I personally feel that this battle of words is one of Tokimasa's greatest highlights.)

Then the battle began, and Minamoto no Yoritomo's army fought hard with 300 men against Oba's army of 3,000 men, but they lost the battle and vassals such as Hojo Tokimasa's eldest son Munetoki Hojo and Sanada Yoichi Yoshitada were defeated. They will be killed in battle.
📍Ishibashi, Odawara City, Kanagawa Prefecture

Spot 2 Place related to Tokimasa Hojo: Enoshima Iwaya
This cave is located in the innermost part of Enoshima, and is said to be the place where Kobo Daishi and Nichiren Shonin practiced in ancient times.

It is said that Tokimasa Hojo would pray for the prosperity of his descendants by praying for the prosperity of his descendants. Then, a celestial maiden appeared in front of Tokimasa and told him, ``My family will prosper as the ruler of Japan,'' and then turned into a large snake and disappeared into the sea, leaving behind three scales. It is said that Tokimasa, who was very pleased with the prophecy, used the scales as his family crest, and the famous honeycomb crest of the Hojo clan was born.
📍Enoshima 2, Fujisawa City, Kanagawa Prefecture

Spot 3 Place related to Kajiwara Keitoki: Shitodo Cave
Stone lanterns and stone Buddhas are lined up on both sides of the steep, winding mountain path, and even during the day it is a quiet, deserted place, with Nishido Cave just down the road.


Several Buddhist statues are enshrined in the cave, and a thin waterfall flows from above, making it a very mysterious place with the sound of the waterfall echoing through the cave.

Shitodo Cave is the place where Minamoto no Yoritomo, who was defeated in the Battle of Ishibashiyama, escaped with a small number of his entourage and hid. Kagechika Oba's army conducted a thorough search, and Kajiwara Kagetoki discovered Yoritomo's party hiding in a cave. When Yoritomo was about to commit suicide, saying, ``This is all I can do...'' (I'm at my limit...it's over...), Kagetoki says, ``I'll help you, so I want you to remember me when we win the battle.'' However, he missed Yoritomo. However, Kagechika Oba thought the cave was still suspicious and tried to go inside, but Kagetoki confronted him and asked, ``Are you doubting me?'' Yoritomo narrowly escaped death.
The exact reason why Kagetoki overlooked Yoritomo is unknown, but there are various theories such as ``The Kajiwara clan served the Minamoto clan, so it was due to that sentiment'' and ``He was impressed by Yoritomo's dignified appearance.'' Apparently there is. Later, Kagetoki was given a more important position than Yoritomo, but this may have been because Yoritomo did not forget the favor he received at this time.
📍Blacksmith shop, Yugawara-cho, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa Prefecture

Spot 4 Place related to Kajiwara Keitoki: Kenchoji Temple
If you go north along the Kamakura Highway from Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine in the center of Kamakura, you will find Kenchoji Temple, the first of the Kamakura Gozan and the head temple of the Kenchoji school of Rinzai sect.

At Kencho-ji Temple, ``Segaki-e'' is held twice every year on July 15th. *Segaki-e is said to be a memorial service for the spirits of the dead who suffered from hunger and thirst and who fell into the path of gaki due to their evil deeds during their lifetime.
One is ``Sanmon Segaki-e'' and the other is ``Kajiwara Segaki-e'' to mourn the ghost of Kajiwara Kagetoki. This happened on July 15th, shortly after Kencho-ji Temple opened, and the samurai appeared immediately after the usual ``Segaki-e'' was held. When the warrior learned that the meeting had already ended, he was very disappointed and tried to go home. However, Daikaku Zenji stopped the warrior and held another Segaki ceremony. It is said that the warrior expressed his gratitude, said, ``I am the spirit of Kajiwara Kagetoki,'' and disappeared. Since then, the Kajiwara Segaki-e has been held at Kencho-ji Temple separately from the Segaki-e.
📍8 Yamanouchi, Kamakura City, Kanagawa Prefecture

This time, we introduced the places that are connected to the first Kamakura shogunate regent Tokimasa Hojo and his senior vassal Kagetoki Kajiwara.What did you think?
Next time we look forward to.

*Please note that there are various theories regarding the contents of the column.

Also check past articles
Touring the places associated with Kamakura-dono
Place related to Yoshitoki Hojo

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