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The Japanese Sengoku Period: 1467-1573 Essay

The Sengoku period (1467-1573) started with and continued after the Onin War. The Sengoku period is described to be what historians call a century and a half of civil war in japan which started in the middle 15th to the early 17th centuries. The sengoku period started during the 14th century when chaos spread throughout japan, this was because the power of the Ashikaga shogunate had almost declined completely and the shugo (governors chosen by the Shogun to supervise one or more of the provinces of Japan) lost their authority in the eastern provinces of Japan. Many provincial officials set themselves up as warlords and attacked each other in the Onin wars (1467-1477). During the Onin Wars the city of Kyoto (now known as Tokyo) was almost completely destroyed. Under Ashikaga Yoshimasa (the shogun), the central government was ruined while the local warlords (daimyo) rose in the countryside which led Japan into a complete lack of social order and civil war which became known as the Sengoku Period. The sengoku period was a time of warfare. During the sengoku period even warriors of low status raised armies and set themselves up as warlords. Warlords, called daimyo fought one another with armies of samurai for land, survival and sometimes even for the control of the shogun himself and his devastated capital. Rank and authority were ignored and most of the old warrior families were exterminated. By 1560 the war had become a contest between the armies of a few powerful families. It was at this point that three leaders appeared to reunify the country.

Oda Nobunaga, born in 1534, started of as the son of a minor warlord (daimyo) called Oda Nobuhide. After the death of his father Oda Nobunga was rightfully meant to be the head of the Oda clan but his uncle, Oda Nobutomo, claimed the position for himself. Nobunaga was able to overcome this challenge by obtaining help and support from another uncle. By doing this he killed Oda Nobutomo. Oda Nobuna…

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