Places, Images, Times & Transformations

Azuchi-Momoyama Period (1568 – 1603)

The Azuchi-Momoyama Period was a brief period at the end of the Warring States Era when Oda Nobunaga and his successor, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, imposed order on the nation in the aftermath of the crumbling of the Ashikaga shogunate.  In fact, the period takes its name from Nobunaga’s and Hideyoshi’s respective headquarters, both near Kyōto.  It can be said to have begun with Nobunaga’s entry into Kyōto to install Ashikaga Yoshiaki as the fifteenth Ashikaga shōgun in 1568, and to have ended with the victory of the forces of Tokugawa Ieyasu (whose headquarters was at Mikawa) over those of Hideyoshi at the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600.

Culturally, the Azuchi-Momoyama Period was marked by the increasing growth of the merchant class, and the patronizing of arts such as the tea ceremony by the warrior class.  Despite, or perhaps because of, an increasing interest in European culture and religion, Hideyoshi sometimes attempted to suppress Christian religious expression.

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