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Yorii Hojo Festival reenact a historical battle of samurai

Yorii Hojo Festival reenact a historical battle of samurai

  |   Japan, Photography   |   No comment

Yorii Hojo Festival reenact a historical battle of samurai

I’m going to Yorii Hojo Festival, take a lot of fun to film and photograph the battle of samurai. There were many spectators, it was impressive.

Yorii Festival Hojo reenact the scene of samurai, the historical battle between the lord of the Hachigata Castle, Hojo Ujikuni and the Toyotomi army, in present day Yorii area in period 1590.  The spectacular battle scene of two armies show what it was like in the Civil War Age.

History:

From Hachigata castle,Hōjō Ujikuni (北条 氏邦, 1541 – September 19, 1597) who was a samurai of the Sengoku period,  offended to Kozuke country (Guuma prefecture) originally under the control of Uesugi clan, and once Kozuke country was controlled by Takeda clan or Oda clan temporally, Ujikuni finally seized large part of that country except for the area held by Sanada clan. But as a result of territorial conflict against Sanada clan evoked by Kuninori Inomata, a general under Ujikuni, Hojyo clan and Toyotomi government entered total war in 1590.

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Ujikuni insisted to ambush Toyotomi army under expedition aggressively at military meeting of Hojyo clan. But as Hōjō Ujimasa (北条 氏政) (1538 – August 10, 1590) who was the fourth head of the late Hōjō clan, and daimyo of Odawara (he commanded in many battles),  decided to besiege at Odawara castle, Ujikuni returned to Hachigata castle and resisted by himself. In March 1590, a detached force of  30,000 soldiers lead by Toshiie Maeda (1539-1599), and Kagekatsu Uesugi (1556-1623), intruded into north Kanto region passing through Usui path, and after the fall of other castles they arrived at Hachigata castle in May.

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Ujikuni had only 3,000 soldiers but firmly kept Hachigata castle utilizing terrain and defence facilities for one month. However, without any help from other castles, he finally decided to surrender to Toyotomi clan. Unlike Ujimasa and Ujiteru, he was forgiven and survived several years after the battle.

The festival starts as like 500 people dressed in traditional Japanese war armor march through the city center, followed by a war opening ceremony at Hachigatajo Park, going on into the fierce battle unfurled at Tamayodokawara (riverbeds) along Arakawa River. The mock battle is the highlight of the festival, when several hundred participants divided into enemies and allies have a pretend fight with the imitation spears. There are firing demonstrations of guns and cannons used in the Civil War period.

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It is a festival held every Spring. In the past it seems it was in April now it is the second Sunday of May.

Access:

Town Main Street, Tamayodokawara riverbeds, Hachigatajo Park Yorii Town, Osato County, Saitama Prefecture.

by car: drive through Kanto Expressway, get off at Hanazono IC, and drive 6km (15 minutes) on the by-pass of Route 140 to Chichibu-Nagatoro

By train: from JR Shinjuku Station take Saikyo Line to JR Omiya Station. Transfer to JR Takasaki Line and get off at Kumagaya Station (or take bullet train from JR Tokyo Station to JR Kumagaya Station; two stops), and take Chichibu Tetsudo Line to Yorii Station. 20-min-walk.By train:

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We can get information on the period of Civil War at any other time, because Hachigata Castle Park, which was constructed in the ruins of Hachigata Castle in Yorii Town maintains the mood of the period. Yorii Town has the Hachigata-jo Castle History Museum.

Movie: “Yorii Hojo Festival staging of samurai battle”

Yorii Hojo Festival staging of samurai battle

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