Ashikaga shogunate

Ashikaga shogunate

足利幕府 (Ashikaga bakufu)
Common languagesLate Middle Japanese
GovernmentFeudal militarism
• 1332–1334
• 1557–1586
• 1338–1358
Ashikaga Takauji
• 1568–1573
Ashikaga Yoshiaki
• Established
11 August 1336
• Surrender of Emperor Go-Kameyama
15 October 1392
• Ōnin War
• Oda Nobunaga captures Heian-kyo
October 18, 1568
• Ashikaga shogunate abolished
2 September 1573
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Kenmu Restoration
Ashikaga clan
Azuchi–Momoyama period

The Ashikaga shogunate (足利幕府, Ashikaga bakufu, 1336–1573), also known as the Muromachi shogunate (室町幕府, Muromachi bakufu),[1] was a dynasty originating from one of the plethora of Japanese daimyō which governed Japan from 1338 to 1573, the year in which Oda Nobunaga deposed Ashikaga Yoshiaki. The heads of government were the shōgun.[2] Each was a member of the Ashikaga clan.[3]

This period is also known as the Muromachi period. It gets its name from the Muromachi district of Kyoto.[1] The third shōgun, Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, established his residence on Muromachi Street. This residence, constructed in 1379, is nicknamed "Flower Palace" (花の御所, Hana no Gosho) because of the abundance of flowers in its landscaping.


During the preceding Kamakura period (1185–1333), the Hōjō clan enjoyed absolute power in the governing of Japan. This monopoly of power, as well as the lack of a reward of lands after the defeat of the Mongol invasions, led to simmering resentment among Hōjō vassals. Finally, in 1333, the Emperor Go-Daigo ordered local governing vassals to oppose Hōjō rule, in favor of Imperial restoration, in the Kenmu Restoration.

To counter this revolt, the Kamakura shogunate ordered Ashikaga Takauji to quash the uprising. For reasons that are unclear, possibly because Ashikaga was the de facto leader of the powerless Minamoto clan, while the Hōjō clan were from the Taira clan the Minamoto had previously defeated, Ashikaga turned against Kamakura, and fought on behalf of the Imperial court.

After the successful overthrow of the Kamakura regime in 1336, Ashikaga Takauji set up his own military government in Kyoto.