Kuwana Domain

Reconstructed portion of Kuwana Castle

Kuwana Domain (桑名藩 Kuwana-han) was a Japanese domain of the Edo period, located in Ise Province (modern-day Mie Prefecture), Japan. It was centered on Kuwana Castle in what is now the city of Kuwana, Mie.


During the late Heian period and Muromachi period, the area of modern Kuwana was known as Juraku-no-tsu (十楽の津)and was a major seaport on the east coast of Japan, controlled by a guild of merchants. The poet Socho described it in 1515 as a major city with over a thousand houses, temples and inns. During the Sengoku period, the area came under the control of Oda Nobunaga, who assigned it to his retainer, Takigawa Kazumasu. After Nobunaga’s death, the area came under the control of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who initially installed Nobunaga’s younger son Oda Nobukatsu as ruler as all of Ise Province. However, following the Battle of Odawara, Hideyoshi demoted Oda Nobukatsu, divided Ise Province into several domains, and assigned Hitotsuyanagi Naomori as ruler of Kuwana. In 1595, the area was reassigned to Ujiie Yukihiro as a 22,000 koku domain. Ujiie Yukihiro sided with the pro-Toyotomi armies in the Battle of Sekigahara and was dispossessed by Tokugawa Ieyasu.

In January 1601, one of Ieyasu’s main generals, Honda Tadakatsu was installed as daimyō of Kuwana Domain, with revenues of 100,000 koku. The Tokugawa Shogunate recognized the strategic value of the location as both a seaport, and also as Kuwana-juku, a post station on the vital Tōkaidō highway connecting Edo with Kyoto. In 1609, Tadakatsu was succeeded by his son Honda Tadamasa, who distinguished himself at the Siege of Osaka and was rewarded with a transfer to the more lucrative Himeji Domain in 1617.

The strategic Kuwana Domain was then assigned to Ieyasu’s half-brother, Hisamatsu Sadakatsu, whose descendants ruled until they were transferred to Takada Domain in Echigo Province in 1710, and their place taken by the Okudaira branch of the Matsudaira clan, who ruled to 1823, when a branch of the Hisamatsu returned to Kuwana from Shirakawa Domain in Mutsu Province. The Hisamatsu continued to rule Kuwana until the end of the Tokugawa shogunate.

Matsudaira Sadaaki, the next-to-last daimyō of Kuwana served as the last Kyoto shoshidai and supported his brother, Matsudaira Katamori, daimyo of Aizu Domain. He fought in the Boshin War, finally surrendering to the Meiji government after the fall of the Republic of Ezo.The final daimyō of Kuwana, Matsudaira Sadanori, was still a child during the Boshin War. He capitulated Kuwana Castle to the Satchō Alliance forces without a battle. He was later educated in the United States and joined the Meiji government, serving as Japanese ambassador to Italy. He was later ennobled with the kazoku peerage title of shishaku (viscount).

With the abolition of the han system in July 1871, Kuwana Domain became “Kuwana Prefecture”, which later became part of Mie Prefecture.


As with all of the Japanese feudal domains, Kuwana Domain was not a single contiguous territory, but consisted of a number of scattered holdings. At the end of the Edo period, it consisted of numerous villages in Ise Province and also in Echigo Province:

Ise Province

Echigo Province

In addition to the above, Kuwana Domain also administered 212 villages within Echigo Province which were tenryo territory on behalf of the shogunate.

List of daimyō

#Name Tenure Courtesy title Court Rank revenues
1Honda Tadakatsu (本多忠勝)1601-1609Nakatsu-no-daisuke Lower 5th (従五位下) 100,000 koku
2Honda Tadamasa (本多忠政)1609-1616Mino-no-kami Lower 4th (従四位下) 100,000 koku
#Name Tenure Courtesy title Court Rank revenues
1Hisamatsu Sadakatsu (久松定勝)1616–1624Oki-no-kami; Sakon-no-shosho Lower 4th (従四位下) 110,000 koku
2Hisamatsu Sadayuki (久松定行)1624-1635Sado-no-kami Lower 5th (従五位下) 110,000 koku
3Matsudaira Sadatsuna (松平定綱)1635–1651Etchu-no-kami Lower 4th (従四位下) 110,000 koku
4 Matsudaira Sadayoshi (松平定良)1652–1657Sado-no-kami Lower 5th (従五位下) 110,000 koku
5Matsudaira Sadashige (松平定重)1657-1710Etchu-no-kami Lower 5th (従五位下) 110,000 koku
#Name Tenure Courtesy title Court Rank revenues
1Matsudaira Tadamasa (松平忠雅)1710–1746Shimosa-no-kami; Sakon-no-shosho Lower 4th (従四位下) 100,000 koku
2Matsudaira Tadatoki (松平忠刻)1746-1771Shimosa-no-kami Lower 4th (従四位下) 100,000 koku
3Matsudaira Tadahira (松平忠啓)1771–1786Shimosa-no-kami Lower 4th (従四位下) 100,000 koku
4 Matsudaira Tadakatsu (松平忠功)1787–1793Shimosa-no-kami Lower 4th (従四位下) 100,000 koku
5Matsudaira Tadatomo (松平忠和)1793-1802Shimosa-no-kami Lower 4th (従四位下) 100,000 koku
6Matsudaira Tadasuke (松平忠翼)1802-1821Shimosa-no-kami Lower 4th (従四位下) 100,000 koku
7Matsudaira Tadataka (松平忠堯)1821-1823Mibu-Daiyu Lower 4th (従四位下) 10,000 koku
#Name Tenure Courtesy title Court Rank revenues
1Matsudaira Sadanaga (松平定永)1823–1838Etchu-no-kami; Sakon-no-shosho Lower 4th (従四位下) 113,000 koku
2Matsudaira Sadakazu (松平定和)1838-1841Etchu-no-kami; Sakon-no-shosho Lower 4th (従四位下) 113,000 koku
3Matsudaira Sadamichi (松平定猷)1842–1858Etchu-no-kami; Jiju Lower 4th (従四位下) 113,000 koku
4 Matsudaira Sadaaki (松平定敬)1859–1868Etchu-no-kami; Sakon-no-shosho Lower 4th (従四位下) 113,000 koku
5Matsudaira Sadanori (松平定教)1868-1871-none- 4th (正四位下) 113,000-->60,000 koku

Simplified family tree


  • 1. Honda Tadakatsu, 1st Lord of Kuwana (1st creation, cr. 1601) (1548-1610; Lord: 1601, r. 1601-1609)
    • II. Honda Tadamasa, 2nd Lord of Kuwana (1st creation) (1575-1631; r. 1609-1616) - see below


  • O-dainokata (1528–1602). She married twice and had issue, including:
    • Tokugawa Ieyasu, 1st Tokugawa Shōgun (1543-1616; r. 1603-1605) (by O-dainokata's first husband Matsudaira Hirotada (1526–1549))
      • Matsudaira Nobuyasu (1559-1579)
        • Myokoin (1577-1626), m. II. Honda Tadamasa, 2nd Lord of Kuwana (1st creation) - see above
      • Kamehime (1560-1625), m. Okudaira Nobumasa, Lord of Kamo, Kyōto Shoshidai (1555-1615)
        • Matsudaira Tadaaki, Lord of Ise-Kameyama (1583-1644)
          • Matsudaira Tadahiro, Lord of Himeji (1631-1700)
            • Matsudaira Kiyoteru (1652-1686)
              • I. Matsudaira Tadamasa, 1st Lord of Kuwana (3rd creation, cr. 1710) (1683-1746; Lord: 1710, r. 1710-1746)
                • II. Matsudaira Tadatoki, 2nd Lord of Kuwana (3rd creation) (1718-1783; r. 1746-1771)
                  • III. Matsudaira Tadahira, 3rd Lord of Kuwana (3rd creation) (1747-1787; r. 1771-1786)
                • Ii Naoari, 4th Lord of Yoita (1719-1760)
                  • Ii Naoakira, 6th Lord of Yoita (1750-1820)
                    • VI. Matsudaira Tadasuke, 6th Lord of Kuwana (3rd creation) (1780-1821; r. 1802-1821)
                      • VII. Matsudaira Tadataka, 7th Lord of Kuwana (3rd creation) (1801-1864; r. 1821-1823)
      • Tokugawa Yorinobu, 1st Lord of Kishū (1602–1671)
        • Tokugawa Mitsusada, 2nd Lord of Kishū (1627-1705; r. 1667-1698)
          • Tokugawa Yoshimune, 5th Lord of Kishū, 8th Tokugawa Shōgun (1684-1751; Lord of Kishū: 1705-1716; Shōgun: 1716-1745)
            • Tokugawa Munetake, 1st head of the Tayasu-Tokugawa line (1716-1771)
              • Matsudaira Sadanobu, 3rd Lord of Shirakawa (1759-1829)
                • I. Matsudaira Sadanaga, 1st Lord of Kuwana (4th creation, cr. 1823) (1791-1838; Lord: 1823, r. 1823-1838)
                  • II. Matsudaira Sadakazu, 2nd Lord of Kuwana (4th creation) (1812-1841; r. 1838-1841)
                    • III. Matsudaira Sadamichi, 3rd Lord of Kuwana (4th creation) (1834-1859; r. 1842-1859)
                      • V. Matsudaira Sadanori, 5th Lord of Kuwana (4th creation), 5th family head, 1st Viscount (1857-1899; Lord: 1868; Governor:1869-1871; family head:1868-1899; Viscount: cr.1884)
        • Matsudaira Yorizumi, 1st Lord of Saijō (1641-1711)
          • Tokugawa Munenao, 6th Lord of Kishū (1682–1757)
            • Tokugawa Munemasa, 7th Lord of Wakayama (1720-1765)
              • IV. Matsudaira Tadakatsu, 4th Lord of Kuwana (3rd creation) (1756-1830; r. 1787-1793)
              • V. Matsudaira Tadatomo, 5th Lord of Kuwana (3rd creation) (1759-1802; r. 1793-1802)
      • Tokugawa Yorifusa, 1st Lord of Mito (1603-1661)
        • Matsudaira Yorishige, 1st Lord of Takamatsu (1622-1695)
          • Matsudaira Yoritoshi (1661-1687)
            • Matsudaira Yoritoyo, 3rd Lord of Takamatsu (1680-1735)
              • Tokugawa Munetaka, 4th Lord of Mito (1705-1730)
                • Tokugawa Munemoto, 5th Lord of Mito (1728-1766)
                  • Tokugawa Harumori, 6th Lord of Mito (1751-1805)
                    • Matsudaira Yoshiyori, 9th Lord of Takasu (1776-1832)
                      • Matsudaira Yoshitatsu, 10th Lord of Takasu (1800-1862)
                        • IV. Matsudaira Sadaaki, 4th Lord of Kuwana (4th creation) (1847-1908; r. 1859-1868)
                          • Matsudaira Sadaharu, 6th family head, 2nd Viscount (1885-1953; family head: 1899-1953; 2nd Viscount: 1899-1947)
                            • Matsudaira Sadaaki (1910-1945)
                              • Matsudaira Sadajun, 7th family head (b. 1940; family head: 1953-)
    • I. Hisamatsu Sadakatsu, 1st Lord of Kuwana (2nd creation, cr. 1616) (1560–1624; Lord: 1616; r. 1616-1624) (by O-dainokata's second husband Hisamatsu Toshikatsu (1526-1587)
      • II. Matsudaira Sadayuki, 2nd Lord of Kuwana (2nd creation) (1587-1668; r. 1624-1635)
        • Matsudaira Sadayori, 2nd Lord of Iyo-Matsuyama (1607-1662)
          • V. Matsudaira Sadashige, 5th Lord of Kuwana (2nd creation) (1644-1717; r. 1657-1710)
      • III. Matsudaira Sadatsuna, 3rd Lord of Kuwana (2nd creation) (1592-1652; r. 1635-1651)
        • IV. Matsudaira Sadayoshi, 4th Lord of Kuwana (2nd creation) (1632-1657; r. 1652-1657)



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