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Tsukegaro

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  • Japanese: 付家老 (tsuke garou)

Tsukegarô were House Elders (karô) associated with the three Gosanke branch houses of the main shogunal Tokugawa clan lineage, i.e. the Owari Tokugawa, Kishû Tokugawa, and Mito Tokugawa houses. Due to the extremely high status of their lords, the tsukegarô themselves enjoyed considerable status within the larger overall samurai hierarchies. In the last years of the Edo period, many were granted daimyô status and domains of their own (including Inuyama han in Owari province, Imao han in Mino province, Shingû han and Kii Tanabe han in Kii province, and Hitachi Matsuoka han in Hitachi province). However, in the decade or two before that, if not earlier, the tsukegarô of the Gosanke houses regularly petitioned the shogunate for privileges equivalent to those enjoyed by daimyô, such as the privilege of participating in special audiences on seasonal occasions such as New Year's alongside the daimyô; such requests were regularly denied.

References

  • Ishin Shiryô Kôyô 維新史料綱要, vol 1 (1937), 382.
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