Takeda Katsuyori (武田 勝頼, 1546 – 3 April 1582) was a Japanese daimyō of the Sengoku period, who was famed as the head of the Takeda clan and the successor to the legendary warlord Takeda Shingen. He was son in law of Hojo Ujiyasu.

Takeda Katsuyori
武田 勝頼
Head of Takeda clan
In office
Preceded byTakeda Shingen
Personal details
Kai Province
Died3 April 1582(1582-04-03) (aged 35–36)
Tenmoku Mountain, Kai Province
Spouse(s)Toyama Fujin
ChildrenTakeda Nobukatsu
Takeda Katsuchika
RelativesTakeda Yoshinobu (brother)
Takeda Nobuchika (brother)
Nishina Morinobu (brother)
Hōjō Ujiyasu (father-in-law)
Military service
Allegiance Suwa clan
Takeda clan
CommandsShinpu Castle

Early life


He was the son of Shingen by the daughter of Suwa Yorishige (posthumous name:Suwa-goryōnin (諏訪御料人, real name, Koihime)).[1] Katsuyori's children included Takeda Nobukatsu and Katsuchika.[2]

Katsuyori, first known as Suwa Shirō Katsuyori (諏訪四郎勝頼), succeeded to his mother's Suwa clan and gained Takatō Castle as the seat of his domain.

After his elder brother Takeda Yoshinobu died, Katsuyori's son Nobukatsu became heir to the Takeda clan, making Katsuyori the true ruler of the Takeda clan.[3] Takeda Katsuyori built Shinpu Castle, a new and larger castle at Nirasaki and transferred his residence there in 1581.

Military life


In 1569, Katsuyori defeated Hojo Ujinobu at Siege of Kanbara[4]

In 1572, Katsuyori successfully took a Tokugawa clan possession in the Siege of Futamata, and participated in the Battle of Mikatagahara against the Oda-Tokugawa alliance.[5]

In 1573, Katsuyori took charge of the Takeda family after the death of Shingen and fought the Tokugawa clan.

In 1574, he captured Takatenjin castle, which even his father had not managed to do. This gained him the support of the Takeda clan.

In 1575, he suffered a terrible loss at the Battle of Nagashino, defeated by one of the earliest recorded uses of volley fire (by Oda Nobunaga's 3,000 guns), and losing a large part of his forces as well as a number of Takeda's generals.[6]

In 1578, Katsuyori incurred the wrath of the Hōjō family by helping Uesugi Kagekatsu against Uesugi Kagetora who was Hōjō Ujiyasu's seventh son, adopted by and heir to Uesugi Kenshin, that initiated the Battle of Omosu in 1580 against Hojo Ujimasa.

In 1581, Katsuyori lost Takatenjin fortress by Tokugawa Ieyasu, the siege ended with the deaths of 680 men of Okabe Motonobu garrison.[7]

In 1582, Katsuyori lost Takatō castle by Oda Nobutada, the only Takeda stronghold in Shinano province to put up any resistance to Nobunaga's final invasion of Takeda domain, the castle was taken on March the 2nd 1582.[8]



After Katsuyori lost Takatenjin fortress and Takatō castle, many clans like Kiso and Anayama withdrew their support for Takeda. The Oda-Tokugawa alliance advanced into Kai Province, and laid siege to Shinpu Castle, Katsuyori was unable to hold the castle with his remaining 300-400 men, so he set fire to Shinpu Castle and fled into the Tenmoku mountain. Later, his forces were destroyed by the combined armies of Oda Nobunaga and Tokugawa Ieyasu at the Battle of Tenmokuzan, after which Katsuyori, his wife, and his son committed ritual suicide, known as seppuku.[3][5]: 231  It was the end of Takeda clan.

The nun Rikei wrote an account of his wife's suicide and, pitying them, wrote several verses in their honour.[9]

Ukiyoe of Takeda Katsuyori at Tenmokuzan


Keirin'in (Katsuyori's wife) carrying a naginata in the Battle of Tenmokuzan.

Toyama Fujin


Takeda Katsuyori married Toyoma Fujin, the adopted daughter of Oda Nobunaga. She died while giving birth to their son Nobukatsu in 1567.



Katsuyori later married Keirin'in, daughter of Hojo Ujiyasu. They had a son and two daughters. In 1582, when Keirin'in was 19, Katsuyori was defeated by Oda Nobunaga and they had to flee. However, Katsuyori was resigned to die and urged her to leave him. She refused and killed herself (jigai), along with Katsuyori in the Battle of Tenmokuzan. Both of his sons died in the battle.



Father: Takeda Shingen (1521–1573)




  • Tei-hime, married Miyahara Yoshihisa
  • Kougu-hime, married Naitō Tadaoki



  Media related to Takeda Katsuyori at Wikimedia Commons

  1. ^ Sato, Hiroaki (1995). Legends of the Samurai. Overlook Duckworth. p. 209. ISBN 978-1-59020-730-7.
  2. ^ "兵庫県西部、播磨地方の情報を中心に日本の旅の想い出を発信しています". www2.harimaya.com (in Japanese).
  3. ^ a b Turnbull, Stephen (1987). Battles of the Samurai. London: Arms and Armour Press. pp. 79–94. ISBN 978-0-85368-826-6.
  4. ^ "蒲原城" (in Japanese). じゃらん. Retrieved 25 July 2019.
  5. ^ a b Turnbull, Stephen (1998). The Samurai Sourcebook. Cassell & Co. p. 219,222–223,230. ISBN 1-85409-523-4.
  6. ^ Turnbull, Stephen (1977). The Samurai. New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc. pp. 156–160. ISBN 978-0-02-620540-5.
  7. ^ Turnbull, Stephen (2000). The Samurai Sourcebook. London: Cassell & C0. p. 231. ISBN 1-85409-523-4.
  8. ^ Ōta, Gyūichi (2011). The chronicle of Lord Nobunaga. J. S. A. Elisonas, Jeroen Pieter Lamers. Leiden: Brill. pp. 426–441. ISBN 978-90-04-20456-0. OCLC 743693801.
  9. ^ Sato, Hiroaki (2008). Japanese Women Poets. Armonk: M.E. Sharpe, Inc. pp. 137–139. ISBN 978-0-7656-1784-2.

Further reading


This article incorporates text from OpenHistory.