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Emperor Go Saga

Emperor Go Saga

Emperor Go-Saga (後嵯峨天皇, Go-Saga Tennō, April 1, 1220 - March 17, 1272) was the 88th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession, and ruled from February 21, 1242 to February 16, 1246.

His personal name was Kunihito (邦仁). His posthumous name was given to him in memory of Emperor Saga (the prefix Go-, 後, can be translated as "later", thus giving "Later Emperor Saga").

Emperor Go Saga Genealogy

He was the second son of Emperor Tsuchimikado and the cousin of Emperor Shijō, his predecessor. His mother was Minamoto no Tsushi, a daughter of Minamoto no Michimune.

He had several children, including the future emperors Go-Fukakusa and Kameyama, as well as Prince Munetaka, sixth shogun of Kamakura.

Empress and consorts :

  • Fujiwara no Kisshi, °1225 †1292; daughter of Fujiwara (Saionji) no Saneuji and Fujiwara (Shijo) no Teishi; empress in 1242; titled Omiya In in 1248; of whom he had 5 children:
  • Fourth son: prince Hisahito, °1243 (emperor Go-Fukakusa)
  • First daughter : Princess Soshi, °1247 †1269 ; titled Gekkamon In in 1263
  • Eighth son: Prince Tsunehito, °1249 (emperor Kameyama)
  • Eleventh son : Prince
  • Thirteenth son : Prince
  • Taira no Toshi, daughter of Taira no Munemoto; lady of the court; titled honorary empress; mother of
  • Third son: Prince Munetaka, °1242 †1274; Shogun in 1252; married A (1260) to an adopted daughter of Hōjō Tokiyori; married B to a daughter of Fujiwara (Konoe) no Kanetsune, from whom he had :
  • Prince Koreyasu °1264 †1326; Shogun 1266-1289
  • Princess Rinshi °1265 ; lady of the court of Go Uda
  • Princess Zuishi °1272 †1329, adopted by emperor Kameyama; lady of the Court of Go Uda; titled Eikamon In in 1302; nun in 1324
  • Princess Taishi, °1231 †1301; daughter of Emperor Go Horikawa and a daughter of Fujiwara no Kaneyoshi; titled Shinsemmon In in 1256; of whom he had :
  • Princess †1281
  • A daughter of Fujiwara (Nijō) no Tsubone; lady of the court; whose
  • Second daughter : Princess Gaishi °1249 †1284 ; vestal princess of Ise (1262-1272)
  • Ninth son : Prince °1250 ; Buddhist priest
  • Sixth daughter : Princess
  • A daughter of Fujiwara Takatoki; titled Koto no Naishi and Gyobukyo; mother of :
  • Seventh son: Prince Kakujō °1247 †1336; Buddhist priest; abbot of Shōgo-in
  • Princess Ekishi °1262 †1294; mistress of her uncle Emperor Kameyama; titled Gojō In in 1289
  • Prince † young
  • A daughter of Fujiwara (Saionji) no Kintsune, titled Dainagon no Sammi; mother of :
  • Prince † young
  • Princess † young
  • Concubines:
  • First son: Prince Enjō °1236 †1282; abbot of Tennoji (or Onjōji?).
  • Sixth son: Prince Shōjō °1247 †1282; abbot of Ninnaji
  • Prince Saijō °1253 †1293 ; abbot of the Kajii In

Emperor Go Saga Biography

Following his father's departure into exile in Tosa province after the Jōkyū revolt in 1221, the future Go-Saga was raised by the maternal side of his family.

In 1242, after the sudden and accidental death of Emperor Shijō at the age of 10, the question of succession arose, and with the wishes of the court nobility and the bakufu at odds, it was bitterly contested.

Kujō Michiie and the court nobility support Prince Tadanari (忠成王), a son of the retired emperor Juntoku, but the shikken Hōjō Yasutoki opposes the accession of Juntoku's descendants because of Juntoku's involvement in the Jōkyū revolt.

Instead, he supports Prince Kunihito, son of Tsuchimikado, as a neutral figure, for accession to the title of emperor.

Because of these negotiations, the throne remained vacant for 11 days, after which Kunihito, who was a Buddhist monk at the time, gave up the robe and ascended the throne.

In 1246, Go-Saga abdicated in favor of his son Go-Fukakusa and began his reign as a retired emperor.

In 1259, he forced Go-Fukakusa to abdicate in favor of his younger brother Kameyama, which subsequently led to a reign by alternating between the two lines of the Jimyōin-tō (the descendants of Go-Fukakusa) and the Daikakuji-tō (the descendants of Kameyama).

In 1252, another of his sons, Prince Munetaka, became shogun, whereupon subsequent Kamakura shoguns were chosen from among the members of the imperial house. However, the real power remained in the hands of the Hōjō regents.

Eras of Emperor Go Saga reign

  • Ninji era
  • Kangen Era