|Emperor of Japan|
|Reign||March 29, 1318 - September 18, 1339|
|Born||November 26, 1288|
Heian-ky?, Kamakura shogunate
|Died||September 19, 1339 (aged 50)|
Yoshino no Ang? (Nara), Ashikaga shogunate
T?-no-o no misasagi (Nara)
|Spouse||Saionji no Kishi|
|Mother||Fujiwara no Ch?shi|
Emperor Go-Daigo ( Go-Daigo-tenn?) (November 26, 1288 - September 19, 1339) was the 96th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. He successfully overthrew the Kamakura shogunate in 1333 and established the short lived Kenmu Restoration to bring the Imperial House back into power. This was to be the last time the emperor had any power until the Meiji Restoration in 1868. The Kenmu restoration was in turn overthrown by Ashikaga Takauji in 1336, ushering in the Ashikaga shogunate, and split the imperial family into two opposing factions between the Ashikaga backed Northern Court situated in Kyoto and the Southern Court based in Yoshino led by Go-Daigo and his later successors.
Post-Meiji historians construe Go-Daigo's reign to span 1318-1339; however, pre-Meiji accounts of his reign considered the years of his reign to encompass only between 1318-1332. Pre-Meiji scholars also considered Go-Daigo a pretender emperor in the years from 1336 through 1339.
This 14th-century sovereign personally chose his posthumous name after the 9th-century Emperor Daigo and go- (?), translates as "later", and he is thus sometimes called the "Later Emperor Daigo", or, in some older sources, "Daigo, the second" or as "Daigo II".
He was the second son of the Daikakuji-t? emperor, Emperor Go-Uda. His mother was Fujiwara no Ch?shi/Tadako (?), daughter of Fujiwara no Tadatsugu (Itsutsuji Tadatsugu) (?/?). She became Nyoin called Dantenmon-in (?). His older brother was Emperor Go-Nij?.
Emperor Go-Daigo's ideal was the Engi era (901-923) during the reign of Emperor Daigo, a period of direct imperial rule. An emperor's posthumous name was normally chosen after his death, but Emperor Go-Daigo chose his personally during his lifetime, to share it with Emperor Daigo.
In the Genk? Incident of 1331, Emperor Go-Daigo's plans were again discovered, this time by a betrayal by his close associate Yoshida Sadafusa. He quickly hid the Sacred Treasures in a secluded castle in Kasagiyama (the modern town of Kasagi, S?raku District, Ky?to Prefecture) and raised an army, but the castle fell to the shogunate's army the following year, and they enthroned Emperor K?gon, exiling Daigo to Oki Province (the Oki Islands in modern-day Shimane Prefecture), the same place to which Emperor Go-Toba had been exiled after the J?ky? War of 1221.
In 1333, Emperor Go-Daigo escaped from Oki with the help of Nawa Nagatoshi and his family, raising an army at Senjo Mountain in H?ki Province (the modern town of Kotoura in T?haku District, Tottori Prefecture). Ashikaga Takauji, who had been sent by the shogunate to find and destroy this army, sided with the emperor and captured the Rokuhara Tandai. Immediately following this, Nitta Yoshisada, who had raised an army in the east, laid siege to Kamakura. When the city finally fell to Nitta, H?j? Takatoki, the shogunal regent, fled to T?sh? temple, where he and his entire family committed suicide. This ended H?j? power and paved the way for a new military regime.:15-21
Upon his triumphal return to Kyoto, Daigo took the throne from Emperor K?gon and began the Kenmu Restoration. The Restoration was ostensibly a revival of the older ways, but, in fact, the emperor had his eye set on an imperial dictatorship like that of the emperor of China. He wanted to imitate the Chinese in all their ways and become the most powerful ruler in the East. Impatient reforms, litigation over land rights, rewards, and the exclusion of the samurai from the political order caused much complaining, and his political order began to fall apart. In 1335, Ashikaga Takauji, who had travelled to eastern Japan without obtaining an imperial edict in order to suppress the Nakasendai Rebellion, became disaffected. Daigo ordered Nitta Yoshisada to track down and destroy Ashikaga. Ashikaga defeated Nitta Yoshisada at the Battle of Takenoshita, Hakone. Kusunoki Masashige and Kitabatake Akiie, in communication with Kyoto, smashed the Ashikaga army. Takauji fled to Ky?sh?, but the following year, after reassembling his army, he again approached Ky?to. Kusunoki Masashige proposed a reconciliation with Takauji to the emperor, but Go-Daigo rejected this. He ordered Masashige and Yoshisada to destroy Takauji. Kusunoki's army was defeated at the Battle of Minatogawa.
When Ashikaga's army entered Ky?to, Emperor Go-Daigo resisted, fleeing to Mount Hiei, but seeking reconciliation, he sent the imperial regalia to the Ashikaga side. Takauji enthroned the Jimy?in-t? emperor, K?my?, and officially began his shogunate with the enactment of the Kenmu Law Code.:54-58
Go-Daigo escaped from the capital in January 1337, the regalia that he had handed over to the Ashikaga being counterfeit, and set up the Southern Court among the mountains of Yoshino, beginning the Period of Northern and Southern Courts in which the Northern Dynasty in Kyoto and the Southern Dynasty in Yoshino faced off against each other.:55,59
Emperor Go-Daigo ordered Imperial Prince Kaneyoshi to Ky?sh? and Nitta Yoshisada and Imperial Prince Tsuneyoshi to Hokuriku, and so forth, dispatching his sons all over, so that they could oppose the Northern Court.
Court lady: Fujiwara no Chikako (?) also Ch?nagon-tenji (), Itsutsuji Munechika's daughter
Lady-in-waiting: Dainagon'nosuke, Kitabatake Moroshige's daughter
Lady-in-waiting: Shin-Ansatsu-tenji (), Jimyoin Yasufuji's daughter
Lady-in-waiting: Sochi-no-suke ()
Court lady: Koto no Naishi (?), Saionji Tsunafusa's daughter
Court lady: Sh?sh? no Naishi (?), Sugawara no Arinaka's daughter
Court lady: Fujiwara (Ano) no Renshi (?/?) later Empress Dowager Shin-Taikenmon-in (, 1301-1359), Ano Kinkado's daughter
Court lady: Minamoto no Chikako (), Kitabatake Morochika's daughter
Court lady: Fujiwara no Ishi/Tameko (?, d. c. 1311-12), Nij? Tameyo's daughter
Ny?go: Fujiwara no Jisshi (). T?in Saneo's daughter
Court lady: Fujiwara no Shushi/Moriko (?, 1303-1357), daughter of T?in Saneyasu (?)
Princess: Imperial Princess Kenshi (, 1270-1324) later Empress Dowager Sh?keimon'in (?), Emperor Kameyama's daughter
Court lady: Fujiwara (Nijo) Michiko (?) also Gon-no-Dainagon no Sammi no Tsubone (?, d. 1351) later Reisho-in (), Nij? Tamemichi's daughter
Court lady: Ichij? no Tsubone () later Y?gimon'in (?), Saionji Sanetoshi's daughter
Court lady: Sh?nagon no Naishi (), Shij? Takasuke's daughter
Ny?go: Dainagon-no-tsubone (?), Ogimachi Saneakira's daughter
Ny?go: Saemon-no-kami-no-tsubone (), Nij? Tametada's daughter
Court lady: Gon-no-Ch?nagon no Tsubone (), Sanj? Kinyasu's daughter
Ny?go: Yoshida Sadafusa's daughter
Ny?go: B?mon-no-tsubone (), Bomon Kiyotada's daughter
Ny?go: Horikawa Mototomo's daughter
Ny?go: Minamoto-no-Yasuko () also Asukai-no-tsubone (?) later Enseimon'in Harima (), Minamoto-no-Yasutoki's daughter
Ny?go: Wakamizu-no-tsubone (), Minamoto-no-Yasutoki's daughter
Ny?go: Horiguchi Sadayoshi's daughter
Court lady: Konoe no Tsubone () later Sh?kunmon'in (?)
Go-Daigo had some other princesses from some court ladies.
Kugy? () 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-Daigo's reign, this apex of the Daij?-kan included:
The years of Go-Daigo's reign are more specifically identified by more than one era name or neng?. Emperor Go-Daigo's eight era name changes are mirrored in number only in the reign of Emperor Go-Hanazono, who also reigned through eight era name changes.