Kurihara Yakata

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Kurihara-yakata was the fortified manor hall of Kurihara Taketsugu, who was a son of Takeda Nobunari. The yakata was constructed in the early 15th century. Under Kurihara Nobutono the Kurihara Clan supported Aburakawa Nobue and Takeda Nobunawa who would rebel against Takeda Nobutora. After Kurihara Nobutono was killed, along with many other Kurihara clansmen, in 1501, his son, Kurihara Nobutomo, attaining sokéship, fought on the side of Takeda Nobutora to unify Kai; Aburakawa Nobue and the other rebels were defeated in 1508. These conflicting alliances indicate that there was a split in the Kurihara Clan over whom they would support. Although some backed the winners, the Kurihara's independence was broken and they were reduced to vassalage upon the unification of Kai. They did not remain docile, however. When the great Nobutora affected his move to Tsutsujiǵasaki-yakata in 1519, he demanded that his vassals leave their own traditional strongholds and join him there in nearby residences. This prompted a rebellion which Kurihara Nobutomo was involved in. He left Kōfu in the fifth month of 1520 and joined forces with Ôi Nobutatsu and Imai Nobuze to rebel. The rebels were defeated in early June at the Battle of Miyakoźuka. Takeda forces then surrounded the Kurihara-yakata, a sizable, well fortified manor hall with multiple baileys and tall earthen ramparts, where Kurihara Nobutomo had fled back to. Facing an inevitable siege, Lord Nobutomo quit the manor, dodging Takeda forces, and fled to Chichibu County, Musashi Province. From here he sent letters begging Takeda Nobutora for forgiveness. This he was granted and Lord Nobutomo was allowed to return to Kai. He died in 1529. His son, Kurihara Nobushige, would also rebel in 1531, but the Kurihara Clan, under such lords as Kurihara Masakiyo, would largely serve the Takeda Clan loyally after that. In 1582 the Takeda Clan was vanquished and the Kurihara would go on to become bannermen of the Tokugawa Shogunate. It is not clear to me at which point the yakata was abandoned but it may have been as early as 1520.

Visit Notes

Kurihara-yakata was once a large fortified compound with multiple square baileys each of about 100m on each side. Today there are scant remains but these include a surprisingly tall segment of dorui (earthen ramparts) to the northeast of the main compound, and the traces of a moat and embankment to the west of the site. This ishigaki (stone walls) here is not related to the yakata, but it's nonetheless fitting with the moat bed in front of it. Another dorui segment is to be found in the south near Ten-jinja, but it is covered in concrete holding stones in place like some kind of icing on an unappetising cupcake. The yakata is thought to have also encompassed the sites of the temples Myōzenji and Daihōji in the east, making it quite large (perhaps a forerunning would-be Tsutsujigasaki Palace).

  • Dorui

Castle Profile
English Name Kurihara Yakata
Japanese Name 栗原館
Alternate Names 栗原氏屋敷・栗原十郎武続屋敷
Founder Kurihara Taketsugu
Year Founded Early 15th century
Castle Type Fortified Manor
Castle Condition Ruins only
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Artifacts Dorui, Karabori
Visitor Information
Access Yamanashi Station on the Chūō Main Line
Visitor Information 24/7 free; fields
Time Required 40 minutes
Location Yamanashi, Yamanashi Prefecture
Coordinates 35° 39' 57.17" N, 138° 41' 52.58" E
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Added to Jcastle 2022
Contributor ART
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed
Friends of JCastle
Oshiro Tabi Nikki
Jōkaku Hōrōki

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