Date Shigezane

Date Shigezane

Date Shigezane (伊達 成実; 1568 - July 17, 1646) was a Japanese samurai of the late Sengoku and early Edo period, belonging to the Date clan.

Shigezane was a son of Date Sanemoto and was initially known as Tōgorō. He was a cousin of Date Masamune on his mother's side, and a cousin of Masamune's father Date Terumune on his father's side.

After distinguishing himself at the Battle of Hitadori (1585) he was awarded the castle of Nihonmatsu and an income of 38,000 koku. He played a considerable role in the defeat of the Ashina clan in 1589. In 1595, unhappy with his reward for the Imjin war, he fled to Mount Kōya.

In 1600, during the Battle of Sekigahara, Uesugi Kagekatsu offered Shigezane exorbitant compensation to become a vassal of the Uesugi clan, but he refused, saying "I could never become a vassal." (Uesugi Sadazane, the last Echigo lord of the Uesugi bloodline, wanted to adopt Shigezane's father in the past, but the Date clan refused.

Had the adoption taken place, Shigezane would have become the lord of Echigo after his father, and Kagekatsu, as a man of the Nagao clan, would have been a vassal under Shigezane's service).

However, Shigezane returned to Date Masamune's service in 1600 and fought in the siege of Osaka. Along with Oniniwa Tsunamoto and Katakura Kagetsuna he was known as one of the "Three Great Men of the Date Clan".

He was famous for his fighting skills.