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Thread: The Birth and Rise of the Ishida Shogunate: Volumes 1 and 2 - An A-H Japan AAR

  1. #21
    Field Marshal King50000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arilou View Post
    Good background.

    Although I should note that due to various japanese pop-culture concerning a lot of these characters I have a very hard time taking any of them seriously...
    Same here, but I try my best to keep those thoughts out of my head while reading this...

  2. #22
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanzhang (譚張) View Post
    That's still admitted to be true even in pro-Tokugawa history!
    What I meant by that was that every regent was complicit in the struggle for power that followed Hideyoshi's death. To single out Ieyasu as the bad egg is exactly the sort of post-war apologia you'd expect from the victors.

    I very much enjoyed the manoevring (both military and diplomatic) that led up to the battle. Now it remains to be seen how the peace can be won.
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  3. #23
    Field Marshal Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    King: Kobayakawa posed quite a problem. I didn't want him to defect but at the same time I didn't want his role in the battle to be a glorious one. I was quite worried that his "charge" would seem too surreal, or out of step with the rest of the AAR. I'm quite relieved that you liked it.

    Arilou: Welcome aboard! I understand how that might be a problem, but those terrible Japanese pop-culture stereotypes could be much, much worse.

    Dewirix: I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed the last chapter. As you say the next chapter will focus on diplomacy and winning the peace.
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  4. #24
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    Just found out you have a new AAR; I really liked your old Vicky 2 one! Are you using another game for the pre-1836 or is it coming from your imagination?
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  5. #25
    Field Marshal Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    Avindian: Welcome aboard! I'm glad you liked my last AAR, I rather enjoyed writing it! All the pre-1836 parts are solely from my imagination. I believe that if I were to use another game as a base it would violate the rules of the AAR forum.

    This update is a short one and will focus on politics and government. The next one will focus on trade, diplomacy, shipbuilding and our first colonial venture! (yay!)
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  6. #26
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    The Toyotomi Shogunate: Establishment and Politics


    Fief Redistribution


    Hidetada's death marked the end of the Tokugawa rebellion. Hideyoshi's reign had lasted only fifteen years before Japan was plunged back into chaos; it was Mitsunari's job to prevent this happening to Hideyori.

    Mitsunari's first move was to redistribute the fiefs of Japan's major daimyo, rewarding those who sided with himself and punishing those who sided with the Tokugawa. In determining fiefs Mitsunari had to strike a delicate balance: if he gave too little to a certain lord that lord might be inclined to take offence and rebel, if he gave too much then that lord might grow too powerful and rebel anyway, like Ieyasu did.

    Being the kind of man he was, Mitsunari's first reaction was to reward those who had been loyal to him. Ankokuji Ekei had been instrumental in bringing the Mouri into the Toyotomi fold and was rewarded with the fiefs of Yamato and Kii, home to Japan's ancient capital, Nara and centre of Japanese Buddhism. Otani Yoshitsugu received most of the old Tokugawa and Oda homelands while Konish Yukinaga was awarded the lion's share of the old Hojo lands, including Ieyasu's stronghold in Edo[1]. Kyushu stayed much as it had before the reshuffle, with Otomo Yoshinobu gaining Suo and Nagato on the very tip of Honshu.

    The Mouri swapped a few provinces with Ukita Hideie, who made gains in Shikoku and Kansai while the Chosokabe were given hegemony over the rest of Shikoku. The Sanada gained most of the old Takeda heartland while the Uesugi recovered a few of the provinces they held in their heyday. The Maeda and Date neither gained nor lost any fiefs.

    Due to his and Kanbei's mutual dislike of each other and the because the Kuroda stayed neutral at Sekigahara, Mitsunari originally intended on stripping the Kuroda clan of their fiefs entirely. It was solely through the personal intervention of Otomo Yoshinobu that the Kuroda managed to not only keep their fief, but gain the nearby island of Awaji[2]. Surprised more than anything else, Kanbei forgave Mitsunari and spent the rest of his life as a loyal subject; he died in 1604.


    Map of Japan's major daimyo and their fiefs after Sekigahara. The heads of these families will form the basis of Japan's ruling elite for the next 250 years.

    The Kizokuin


    Mitsunari's next move would be a political masterstroke. Mitsunari deduced that the cause of the Toyotomi-Tokugawa war was ultimately due to the Council of Regents failure to live up to it's purpose, namely to prevent any one daimyo from seizing power with what we would later term "collective security". Mitsunari's solution was to broaden the regency from just five daimyo to every major daimyo in the land. The theory being that if one daimyo stood in rebellion all other daimyo would stand against him, and thus deter any one daimyo from rebelling. Mitsunari's vehicle for the new regency was even more ingenious, a proto-legislature which he called the Kizokuin (貴族院) which literally translates into English as The House of Noblemen (or Lords, if you will).

    The stated purpose of the Kizokuin was to immerse young Hideyori in governance. Through the Kizokuin he would be able to hear reports from every corner of his empire, and have the ear of every daimyo should he need advice. The real genius of the Kizokuin however was that it concentrated all of Japan's daimyo and their families in one place, in effect a legitimate excuse for hostage taking. The house met daily in Mitsunari's powerbase in Osaka and each province was represented by a daimyo, much in the same way an MP represents his constituency in a modern democracy. Unlike modern houses of parliament the daily attendances were compulsory, and if a daimyo was unable to attend he was required to have a representative (his son, or closest male relative if he had none) sit in his place, or be charged with treason and sentenced to death. The major lords were however required to attend the house at least four times a year regardless of health or means for a "Seasonal Census" the height of the Japanese political calender, where they were also required to present their troops in front of lord Hideyori for inspection; the idea being that even the richest lords would be spending so much time and money traveling to and from Osaka that they wouldn't have the time or means to rebel. As each province was required to be represented by one daimyo (so for example, Ankokuji Ekei could represent Yamato or Kii, but not both) a major daimyo would have to appoint a senior retainer as a representative for each extra province under his rule. This meant that Mitsunari not only held major daimyo as hostages, but their retainers as well.


    The old site of the Kizokuin as it stands today, Osaka. It's creation was a masterstroke by Ishida Mitsunari and was instrumental in keeping Japan stable for the next three centuries.

    Foundation of the Shogunate


    Mitsunari had been the de facto Kampaku since Sekigahara although technically speaking that title had been vacant since Hideyoshi's death. Mitsunari's last bit of constitutional change was to petition the Emperor to promote him to Kampaku (which he did on the 15th of September, 1600), which would give him the authority to resurrect the old position of shogun. After much deliberation, Emperor Go-Yozei relented and in 1603 the position of shogun was restored. In a lavish ceremony in Osaka, ten year old Toyotomi Hideyori was crowned as Japan's first Toyotomi Shogun. As things would later turn out, he would also be it's last.


    The young Toyotomi Hideyori in his coronation robes (notice the similarity between his robes and those his father wore as Kampaku). His coronation as shogun was in 1603 yet he was only able to assume the reigns of government when he reached the age of 15 in 1608. Until then he was essentially a figurehead, and many would agree that he would remain a figurehead for the rest of his life.

    Notes:


    [1] Ieyasu was originally from Mikawa (Otani's second-most eastward province) and was awarded most of the Kanto region by Toyotomi Hideyoshi (pretty much all of Konishi's provinces). Edo would be renamed Tokyo (Eastern Capital) when Emperor Meiji transferred the imperial court (and therefore the Capital) from Kyoto to Edo/Tokyo in 1868. As Ieyasu never came to power (and therefore never developed Edo as his base) in the AAR's timeline, there would be no reason to ever make Edo/Tokyo the capital of Japan.

    [2] In real life it was the reverse, with Kanbei and Nagamasa using their influence to help the Otomo retain their fiefs.
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  7. #27
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    I like the idea of the Kizokuin as a proto-Versailles. Keeping the nobility safely at court rather than letting them plot in their own domains. Bonus points if you can make attending ruinously expensive so the can't afford to do anything and instead have to compete for imperial favour to secure positions and salaries.

    Funny how we don't currently have a V2 Japan AAR where Edo/Tokyo is the capital.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tanzhang (譚張) View Post
    Mitsunari's last bit of constitutional change was to petition the Emperor to promote him to Kampaku (which he did on the 15th of September, 1600), which would give him the authority to resurrect the old position of shogun. After much deliberation, Emperor Go-Yozei relented and in 1603 the position of shogun was restored. In a lavish ceremony in Osaka, ten year old Toyotomi Hideyori was crowned as Japan's first Toyotomi Shogun. As things would later turn out, he would also be it's last.
    I thought that the reason that neither Nobunaga or Hideyoshi became shogun is that they couldn't trace descent from a princely family. Wouldn't that also hold true for Hideyori? When Ieyasu became shogun he fabricated a link to the Minamoto.
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  8. #28
    Field Marshal Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    Dewirix: I was hoping nobody would bring that up yet! It's true that Hideyoshi had no such link and tried to create one by marrying into the Ashikaga, but I believe Nobunaga was a distant relation of the Taira. (in case you mention it, Mitsunari was a very, very, very distant relation of the Fujiwara) Unlike his father though, Hideyori is the son of a Kampaku, which would entitle him to become imperial consort. One must assume that if he's noble enough to marry an empress he'd be noble enough to become shogun.
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  9. #29
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    Interesting stuff. I look forward to seeing how your Japan develops.
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  10. #30
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    uhh this is good loved your Dutch AAR and already love this one

    def. subscribed!

  11. #31
    Field Marshal Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    Alfredian: Welcome! I hope Japan's development is interesting enough to maintain your interest until the AAR proper starts.

    the-hdk: At last, someone I remember commenting on my first AAR! Welcome back!

    Here's the next update, hopefully I'll be able to fit in an extra chapter within the next two days.
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  12. #32
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    The Toyotomi Shogunate: (1603 - 1609)


    Economics and Trade


    One of the unspoken rules of economics is that the only businesses that do well in wartime are arms dealers and undertakers. Japan had been in a state of war on and off for over a century, so suffice to say Japan wasn't in the best shape economically. As a bureaucrat by trade, Mitsunari had a unique insight into Japan's economic situation and the role that the merchant and artisan classes played in Japan's economy. An insight to which the daimyo and upper classes, blinded by Confucian orthodoxy, would be unable to see.

    Mitsunari cut taxes in order to boost growth, decreeing that taxes for the merchant, artisan and peasant classes should never exceed 50 percent of their total income. By cutting taxes, merchants would have more money to spend on goods produced by artisans who would use their increased profits to produce more goods. Common sense today perhaps, but a radical concept for 16th century feudal Japan.

    Mitsunari was not the first lord to do this, (that would be Oda Nobunaga) nor was he the first lord to see potential in trading with foreign nations when the opportunity presented itself. Mitsunari was the first to see the massive potential in Japanese merchants trading overseas. Japan would no longer wait for merchants to come to them, Japan would seek it's own opportunities.

    The most obvious market for Japan was Ming China. China was a rich country, geographically close to Japan, which had products Japan wanted (deer, whose skins and horns were used in Japanese armour) and were in need of products the Japanese specialised in, namely katanas. China wasn't the only country interested in Japanese weapons though. The arquebus was originally introduced to Japan in 1544 by Portuguese merchants. Japanese craftsmen had studied the weapon intensely and began producing duplicates. Not satisfied with mere duplicates though, Japanese craftsmen began to develop arquebuses superior to the Portuguese originals - indeed the best anywhere in the world - and sell these to the Europeans. Praised for both their practical uses and for their aesthetic qualities, Japanese arquebuses and katanas fetched a high price in European auction houses.

    At the time of Hideyori's ascension, Japan had two major trading ports: Nagasaki in Hizen (Otomo Yoshinobu's "capital") and Sakai, the Port city of Osaka (Toyotomi powerbase and now de facto capital of Japan) which had both operated in this capacity for around 60 years. Mitsunari knew that foreign trade was both a a great asset and a potential threat to his rule lest less than loyal daimyo use it for their own nefarious purposes. He did not see the two existing ports to be a threat, Sakai was essentially in his own backyard and Nagasaki was controlled by one of his most loyal supporters, so he passed legislation to make these two ports Japan's "staple ports" (to use a contemporary European term). There was to be no limit on whom would be allowed to trade at these ports though in practice Portuguese merchants were preferred in Nagasaki (whose daimyo was a devout catholic) while Dutch merchants had the largest foreign stake in Sakai. Mitsunari still wanted to encourage foreign trade elsewhere, and in 1608, permitted the establishment of seven other trade ports in western Japan, many of which had experienced some form of foreign trade in the past.

    In order to preserve Sakai and Nagasaki as the principal trading ports, Mitsunari developed a system of regulation whereby all merchants had to belong to a particular za[2], or "trading station" in order to trade in a particular port. Trade stations were determined by nationality (for instance, Japanese merchants belonged to Japanese trading stations, Portuguese merchants to Portuguese trading stations, etc.) and were operated much in the same way as factories did in India and the New world, except that the Japanese ran them all. The right to a trading station was one awarded through Mitsunari (a "Kampaku Charter" if you will) and thus by banning merchants from trading outside their designated trading stations, Mitsunari was able to play foreign powers against one another in the seven new ports while simultaneously maintaining Nagasaki and Sakai's dominance as they were the trading ports with the most stations.



    The nine licensed trading ports in 1609, and their trading stations listed in order of importance and value.


    This particular brand of protectionism was a roaring success, and financially a boon for the young shogunate. By making himself and his fellow daimyo very rich indeed, and by passing the savings unto the populace in the form of tax cuts, Mitsunari was able to cement his clan's rule in Japan for centuries to come.





    The trading stations weren't just a domestic institution. Japanese merchants affiliated with a domestic trade station began setting them up overseas too, in Ryukyu, Macau and Taiwan at first, but later as far as Ayutthara, Malacca and Dai Nam. Again, as the Japanese trade stations in Sakai and Nagasaki were the largest, the majority of the proceeds of these foreign trade stations went to those two ports. This began to be known as the "Red Seal System" after the red seals on permits granted to Japanese merchants licensed to trade at Japanese trading posts.



    A "Red Seal ship" used by Japanese traders. In order to obtain a permit, Japanese merchants were required to sail in domestically-built ships such as these. One assumes to make them easily identifiable by Japanese port authorities.


    "Anjin-sama" and the makings of a Japanese Navy


    Surprisingly for an Island nation, Japan had no real navy or history of naval warfare (they were however notorious in Asia for their piracy). Ever the innovator, Nobunaga had used a fleet to good effect against the Mouri clan and several prominent clans had fleets, but nothing on the scale of the Chinese, Koreans or even the Royal Scottish Navy during the time of King James I. [2]

    Mitsunari's dream was to establish a national navy at least on par with that of Portugal or the Netherlands. Unlike the domestic trade ships, these ships would be modeled on the European ships of the day: namely caravels, galleons and carracks. As luck would have it, an English pilot by the name of William Adams had recently tried to dock off Bungo province in northern Kyushu. Originally suspected to be pirates, Adams and his fellow crewmen were taken to Osaka castle to see Mitsunari.

    Mitsunari was quite taken by the Englishman's skill in ship design and invited him to design and build two western-style ships for him. Adams was an Anglican which didn't endear him to Mitsunari's catholic friends Yoshinobu and Yukinaga, so he spent most of his time leading Red Seal trade missions overseas where he wouldn't cause frictions between Mitsunari and his loyal catholic retainers.


    Toyotomi Maru, one of the two ships built for the Shogunate's Navy under the direction of Englishman William Adams, or Anjin-sama as he was known to the Japanese


    The Invasion of Ryukyu:


    In between the islands of Kyushu and Taiwan lay the Ryukyu Archipelago. Populated by ethnic Japanese yet politically separate from Japan, Ryukyu was led by it's own monarch who paid homage to the Ming Emperor. Ryukyu was an important commercial gateway to the rest of Asia, it's people spoke Japanese and worshiped the Japanese gods. To the Otomo and Shimazu clans, it was an insult that "Japanese" should pay tribute to a foreign emperor and not to a Japanese shogun.


    King Sho Nei, monarch of the Ryukyu Kingdom. He was a vassal of the Ming Empire and paid an annual tribute to Beijing, but not Osaka.


    Shimazu Yoshihiro and Otomo Yoshinobu both saw the economic potential in a Japanese subjugation of the Ryukyu Islands, and in 1608 petitioned the court for shogunal permission to invade the islands. With Mitsunari's acquiescence, the young shogun gave his permission and an invasion was planned for the spring of 1609. The invasion was to be led jointly by the two powerful Kyushu daimyo and in return, the islands would be appropriately split evenly between them; The Otomo gaining influence in the northern islands and the Shimazu influence in the southern islands.

    Mitsunari did not want to anger Ryukyu's masters as the Ming Empire still had a much more powerful army and navy than Japan, so unfortunately outright annexation of Ryukyu was out of the question at this time. The best the Kyushu forces could hope for was an annual tribute paid to them and the shogunate; this would be enough for now.

    Over 6'000 men departed Otomo and Satsuma lands for Shuri, the Ryukyuan Kingdom's capital. The Ryukyuans had few warriors and resistance was futile against the might of the Toyotomi, yet a few brave souls resisted the occupation. They were quickly overcome, and the occupation was mostly peaceful. [3]

    Under the terms of the peace negotiations, Ryukyu was allowed to maintain it's independence provided that it pay annual tribute to Osaka as opposed to every ten years for Ming China. Both the Otomo and Shimazu were allowed to maintain a garrison in Ryukyu in their respective spheres of influence and Japanese merchants were given priority to buy and sell in Ryukyuan markets. The Treaty of Kagoshima, as it was known outside Japan, was signed in July 1609. Ryukyu would remain a vassal of Japan for the next 35 years.


    Ambassadors of the Ryukyuan King paying tribute to the Shogun Toyotomi Hideyori in Osaka.

    Notes:


    [1] Za roughly translates into "guild" in English.

    [2] Which was said to have possessed a a grand total of three warships.

    [3] This is what actually happened. The Ryukyuans mostly gave up without a fight and paid tribute to both China and Japan until the 19th Century.
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    Mitsunari cut taxes in order to boost growth, decreeing that taxes for the merchant, artisan and peasant classes should never exceed 50 percent of their total income. By cutting taxes, merchants would have more money to spend on goods produced by artisans who would use their increased profits to produce more goods. Common sense today perhaps, but a radical concept for 16th century feudal Japan.
    Fixing taxes was actually somthing confucians were quite fond of. It was one of the main reasons the Qing was so bancrupt in the 19th century.
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  14. #34
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    Pretty interesting. I'm guessing these new international trade stations are going to help lead to the sooner modernization and westernization.

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    Arliou: But if you read that paragraph carefully, Mitsunari isn't fixing taxes (he wouldn't have the authority to do that yet) he's capping taxes at 50%. (which counts as a tax cut because we're assuming they were above 50% beforehand) This is a little piece of foreshadowing.

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    Dear Readers,

    I just want to let you all know that I'm heading off to Malaysia for a week and I won't have PC or Internet access. Unfortunately, this means that there won't be another update for at least a week. Feel free to leave a comment if you haven't already and I'll be sure to get back to you once I return.

    Thank You.
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  17. #37
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    An active trading policy could lead to war with one of the European powers active in Asia. Risky stuff, but if there's anything that drives innovation it's the need to remain on par with an enemy.

    Are we to take it from the 1603-1609 date that Hideyori doesn't last long?
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    China was a rich country, geographically close to Japan, which had products Japan wanted (deer, whose skins and horns were used in Japanese armour)
    This makes me think that some colonies in Siberia would be useful. They must be able to supply a lot of these raw materials. They would also provide a good source of timber for Japan's new shipbuilding programme.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfredian View Post
    This makes me think that some colonies in Siberia would be useful. They must be able to supply a lot of these raw materials. They would also provide a good source of timber for Japan's new shipbuilding programme.
    I'm sure Masamune wouldn't mind receiving that land in exchange for an oath of loyalty

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    Okay everyone, I'm back. Unfortunately I've contracted a rather bad cold (Malaysian weather, no doubt) so the update might take three or four days while I shake off it's effects.

    Dewirix: Well actually Japan's foreign trade initiatives have been quite historical up to this point, and Ieyasu had no such problems in our timeline. I wouldn't foresee any such conflicts for some time (maybe 150 years or so). As for Hideyori you assume correctly, but longer than 1609 if that's what you're thinking.

    Alfredian: One of the reasons I didn't want to do a EUIII conversion was because I wanted a Russian Siberia (as opposed to a Japanese or Castilian one). Personally I don't see all that much point in anyone colonising Siberia in the early 1600's save Russia or the Manchurians perhaps.

    King: You've almost hit the nail on the head! Almost!
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