Yanagisawa Yoshiyasu

Yanagisawa Yoshiyasu
Yotsu-hanabishi or
Yanagisawa's Hanabishi,
the emblem of the Yanagisawa clan

Yanagisawa Yoshiyasu (Japanese: 柳沢 吉保, December 31, 1658 – December 8, 1714) was a Japanese samurai of the Edo period. He was an official in the Tokugawa shogunate and a favourite of the fifth shōgun, Tokugawa Tsunayoshi. He was the husband of Ogimachi Machiko, a writer and scholar from the noble court who wrote monogatari.[1]


He served Tsunayoshi from an early age, becoming his Wakashū and eventually rose to the position of soba yōnin.[citation needed] He was the daimyō of the Kawagoe han, and later of the Kōfu han; he retired in 1709.[citation needed] Having previously been named Yasuakira, he received a kanji from the name of the shōgun, and came to call himself Yoshiyasu.[citation needed] He built Rikugien Garden, a traditional Japanese garden, in 1695. He had an adopted son named Yanagisawa Yoshisato by Tokugawa Tsunayoshi with Yoshiyasu's concubine, Sumeko.[clarification needed]

Yanagisawa played a pivotal role in the matter of the forty-seven rōnin.[citation needed]

Cultural references[]

Yanagisawa appears as a character in most of the novels by American mystery writer Laura Joh Rowland set in Genroku-era Japan as the antagonist to the books' main character Sano Ichiro.[citation needed] Rowland's chronology differs from history by having Yanagisawa exiled in disgrace in 1694 and being replaced by Sano as Tsunayoshi's chief advisor, only to return from exile later in the series.[citation needed] Other details of Yanagisawa's life, however, are portrayed fairly accurately, including his relationship to the shōgun.[citation needed]

See also[]


  1. ^ Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Yanagisawa Yoshiyasu" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 1048, p. 1048, at Google Books; n.b., Louis-Frédéric is pseudonym of Louis-Frédéric Nussbaum, see Deutsche Nationalbibliothek Authority File Archived 2012-05-24 at archive.today.


Preceded by 1st Lord of Kawagoe

Succeeded by
Preceded by 1st Lord of Kōfu

Succeeded by