Glossary: Takeda Katsuyori

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Takeda Katsuyori (武田勝頼)
1546 - 1582

Also known as: Suwa Katsuyori (諏訪勝頼)

Fourth son of Takeda Shingen. His mother was not Sanjou, but Suwa Goryounin, the daughter of the head of a defeated clan, Suwa Yorishige, Shingen's concubine. He was originally kept out of the line succession to the Takeda clan by being made head of the Suwa Clan. However, when Shingen's heir, Takeda Yoshinobu was found plotting against his father and ordered to commit suicide, Shingen named Katsuyori's son, Nobutatsu, his heir and Katsuyori guardian. Katsuyori took over rule of the Takeda clan when his father died.

Katsuyori was decribed as a brave and exceptionally skilled fighter, but lacking in strategy when he took over the Takeda army. In 1578, during the Otate no Ran, he betrayed his allies the Houjou clan and took Uesugi Kagekatsu's side, thus adding the Houjou to his list of enemies. He was increasing unpopular with the people of Kai due to heavy drafts caused by defeats in battle with the Oda, Tokugawa, and Houjou clans.

In 1582 Kai and Shinano were invaded by the combined arms of Oda, Tokugawa, and Houjou. Most of Katsuyori's troops abandoned him, and he committed suicide.