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HarryJJ
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:29 pm    Post subject: Question about marriage between samurai families Reply with quote
When marriage occurred between two samurai families which families mon takes precedence over the other in regards to formal wear? Is it much like male surnames into days society...

I ask because if a father only has a daughter to offer in marriage is his family name in danger of dying out? Assuming he has no male relatives on his fathers side .
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Tatsunoshi
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
In most marriages the bride will be entering the groom's household and become part of his family-so usually it would be the crest of the groom's family.

Occasionally a family might want to get rid of an extra son and have him marry a woman from a family without a male heir. The groom would be 'adopted' by the bride's family, take on their name, become the new offical heir, and the bride's family crest (now his) would be used.

There was no such thing as an offical government sanctioned marriage ceremony (even into the Edo period) so families could do pretty much what they wanted (although in the Edo period samurai marriages had to get official approval).
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Tatsunoshi wrote:

Occasionally a family might want to get rid of an extra son and have him marry a woman from a family without a male heir.

I think that is a rather negative way of stating it. Adoption was very common in Japan, and adoption involving marriage would be done for the same reasons as other marriages or adoptions, because both families thought it would benefit them. Of course a family would not let their heir be adopted, but they would normally not have the goal of getting rid of an extra son, but using the new relationship and/or providing for his future.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 6:28 am    Post subject: Adopted sons-in-law Reply with quote
Out of the Tokugawa shoguns, several had no sons, but none appears to have adopted daughter´s husband:
Ietsuna, aged 38, was succeeded by brother Tsunayoshi
Tsunayoshi, aged 62, had no son and was succeeded by nephew Ienobu
Ieharu, aged 49, adopted Ienari, a remote relative in male line
Iesada, aged 34, had no children and was succeeded by Iemochi, from Wakayama line

(Omitting the 2 shoguns who died as boys and therefore had neither sons nor daughters - though Iemochi lived to be 20, and could have had children in his teens)

Can you point at rulers of major domains who did adopt a son in law who did inherit?
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Uesugi Kenshin adopted the son of Nagao Masakage and the 7th son of Hojo Ujiyasu. Leading to a civil war for a successor to rule the Uesugi.

During the Sekigahara campaign Kenshin's successor Uesugi Kagekatsu was confronted by Yuki Harumoto's adopted son Hideyasu who was Tokugawa Ieyasu's 2nd son.

Mori Motonari's 3rd son was adopted by the Kobayakawa and became Kobayakawa Takakage. Takakage adopted the 5th son of Kunoshita Iesada who became Kobayakawa Hideaki.

Mori Motonari pressured Kikkawa Okitsune to adopt his 2nd son Motoharu. Okitsune was forced into retirement and later killed. Under Motoharu the Kikkawa became important vassals of the Mori.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Uesugi Kenshin expressly had no daughter either. Among the listed adoptees, the only one whose marriage I found mentioned was Yuki Hideyasu, and he married his adoptive father´s niece, not daughter.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 9:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
One of the better known instances was when the Tachibana family adopted Takahashi Shigetani's son and then married him (Muneshige) to their daughter Ginchiyo. He became the family heir and came to power.

Most higher rank samurai could afford plenty of concubines and had no problems producing male heirs and securing their lines. The ones that were shooting blanks or were celibate would often just adopt an heir from a cadet branch of the family. In the Edo period, you could pretty much declare anyone you wanted heir and it was fine as long as the Shogunate gave their approval.

And of course, the Tokugawa operated under a different set of rules. Being top dog, they weren't going to find an heir from outside their family-Ieyasu specifically set up the Gosanke to provide heirs should the main branch be unable to (and of course later Wise Shogun Yoshimune's three Gosankyo families).
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2012 8:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Tatsunoshi wrote:
One of the better known instances was when the Tachibana family adopted Takahashi Shigetani's son and then married him (Muneshige) to their daughter Ginchiyo. He became the family heir and came to power.

Most higher rank samurai could afford plenty of concubines and had no problems producing male heirs and securing their lines. The ones that were shooting blanks or were celibate would often just adopt an heir from a cadet branch of the family. In the Edo period, you could pretty much declare anyone you wanted heir and it was fine as long as the Shogunate gave their approval.

And of course, the Tokugawa operated under a different set of rules. Being top dog, they weren't going to find an heir from outside their family-Ieyasu specifically set up the Gosanke to provide heirs should the main branch be unable to (and of course later Wise Shogun Yoshimune's three Gosankyo families).


Cadet branch?
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2012 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
HarryJJ wrote:
Cadet branch?


Junior line. Think "cousins". For example

Daimyo has 4 sons, A, B, C, and D. A, being the eldest, is the heir. A, B, C, and D all have one son each, W, X, Y, and Z. W, as the heir to A, becomes the daimyo upon his father's death.

Now, let's say that W lives his life as daimyo, but is shooting blanks and despite trying, doesn't have a son. There's no brother to pass it to, as A only had one son, so the family headship will not stay in A's line. Still, W has to have an heir, otherwise the house loses their status as daimyo. X, Y, and Z all managed to have healthy sons. So instead of passing it to his brother X, let's say, W decides to adopt X's (or Y's or Z's) son as his own and name that son the heir--this way, it still continues down "his" line, even though biologically that's not the case.

In this example, X, Y, and Z are all members of cadet, or junior, lines of succession.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2012 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I’d add that many cadet families during the Edo period held daimyo status themselves. For example, while the main line of the Maeda started by Maeda Toshiie was worth about a million koku, there was a much smaller nearby han held by a Maeda cadet branch. The Oda had quite a few daimyo cadet branches in the Edo period-four lines total. The Naito had six daimyo lines. The branch of the Asano that instigated the 47 Ronin incident was a cadet branch (and the main branch of the Asano was itself a cadet branch of the Imperial line through the Toki and Seiwa Genji). Supposedly this was a reason why Asano’s younger brother didn’t try to avenge him as was traditional-the main branch wanted to avoid backlash from the Shogunate (and of course, the younger brother was hoping to have the cadet’s domain restored-which eventually happened, albeit for much less koku).
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2012 11:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
A cadet branch usually implies a legally separate (semi-) independent branch with its own source of income.
A good example of a cadet branch 分家 in the Edo period is the Saijô 西条 branch of the Tokugawa Wakayama (Kishû) han. Ieyasu's son Yorinobu of Ki had his second son Yorizumi given a han in Saijô in Shikoku. Afterwords twice the Saijô daimyo became the Ki daimyo and twice the son of a Ki daimyo became the Saijô daimyo. However, in 1816, Tokugawa Harutomi married his daughter to Shimizu Nariyuki 斉順, a son of the shogun Iesada, and adopted him as his heir. (So an example of adopting a son-in-law.) After Nariyuki's death Harutomi wanted to take a successor from Saijo han, as had been done since the time of Yoshimune, a century before, but he was eventually forced to accept another son of the shogun Iesada. (The Saijo han supported Satcho during the Restoration. In resentment?)

It was not only daimyo that set up cadet houses. The Genro Matsukata Masayoshi was a younger son who officially set up a branch family independent of his older brother. And in the 1930's Terasaki Hidenari officially set up a branch family in his family register so if he died his wife would have authority over their young daughter, not his older brother.
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 5:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Understood, thank you for the replies!
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