While Takenaka Hanbei(竹中半兵衛) seized control of Inabayama Castle, Kuroda Kanbei(黒田官兵衛) served his lord named Kodera Masamoto(小寺政職) and lived at Himeji Castle(姫路城).
Woman: « You are going to see the man, Hanbei, who you adore, aren’t you? »
Kanbei: « Adore… »
In a certain sense, Kuroda Kanbei(黒田官兵衛)‘s feeling for Takenaka Hanbei(竹中半兵衛) is similar to the feelings of girls who fall in love with love.
Kanbei: « Takenaka Hanbei took over Inabayama Castle, as he was at the age of just 21. Let me say again, 21! »
He passionately said.
Kanbei: « Inabayama Castle is well-known for a impregnable castle. Even Oda Nobunaga(織田信長) couldn’t seize it. He used a devious stratagem and took control of it with only around 20 samurai. Brilliant. Awe-inspiring. That’s why I want to see him who took over a castle by his wits. »
Woman: « What will you do after seeing him? Are you going to be his man? »
Kanbei: « No. »
Kanbei shook his head in the negative.
Kanbei: « I don’t want to be his man. First of all, Hanbei already gave the castle back to the former lord Saito Tatsuoki(斎藤竜興). »
Woman: « Eh! Why did he blow his chance? »
Kanbei: « I don’t know. »
Kanbei said with furrowing his brows.
Kanbei: « Just after Hanbei took control of Inabayama Castle, Oda Nobunaga demanded to exchange the castle for half of Mino(美濃) province. »
Woman: « Sounds good. »
Kanbei: « However, Hanbei turned it down. Furthermore, he gave the castle back to the former lord Saito Tatsuoki for nothing. He secluded himself at remote part of Mt. Kuriharayama in Mino province. »
Woman: « Can’t be! He doesn’t seem to have social graces. »
The woman said with her head a little on one side.
Kanbei: « You are so funny. »
Kanbei smiled with his white teeth.
Kanbei: « When I heard at first, it sounded ridiculous. »
Woman: « Yeah. »
Kanbei: « But, I got to know a little while thinking. »
Woman: « What’s that? »
Kanbei: « There are two types of men in the world. Every man has an ambition of leading millions of his men as a lord. With any luck, he rules dozens of territorial lords and gives them his commands. It’s a superb dream for a man. »
Woman: « It drives men into bloodshed, behind where innocent women and children get involved in. Unreasonable. »
Kanbei: « I’ve been thinking that is a man so far. But, it’s wrong. I’m also a man. I have an ambition as young people have. I’d like to leave my name and achieve a remarkable thing. But, it’s different from an ambition of ruling lots of people. It’s different from a hope of having a magnificent castle and receiving respect. I’ve been looking for a way to express somewhat different and unclear things inside me. I’ve been wondering for years. »
Woman: « I see. »
Kanbei: « These days, I heard that Takenaka Hanbei seized control of Inabayama Castle. It was so incredible. I was flabbergasted. What made me more startled is that Hanbei didn’t stick to the castle and abandoned it quickly. General people with an ambition don’t do such a thing. Takenaka Hanbei is a different type of man. »
Woman: « It’s difficult for me……What is he longing for? »
Kanbei: « Talent. He just wanted to test his talent. The opportunity came to Inabayama Castle by chance. His purpose was to take a castle by wisdom. He doesn’t care about ruling a castle. That’s why he abandoned it. »
Woman: « You just believe it on your own, don’t you? »
Kanbei: « I’m sure. »
Woman: « Why? »
Kanbei: « I’m a same type as Takenaka Hanbei. My ambition is the same as his one. I’d like to test my talent in this war times. Yeah, I admit I adore him. I’d like to ask him what and how I should do to be like him. Ah, I can’t sit around. I’m going to see him right now. »
Kanbei couldn’t resist his temptation to see Hanbei. Finally, he burst out of Himeji Castle.
Himeji Castle is registered as one of World Heritage Sites. Its view is splendid. However, it is said that it was not so much magnificent in Kanbei’s period as it is. According to the official site, Himeji Castle is under repair construction until March in 2015. It may be better to wait for repair to be over than to visit now.
It was in 1564, when Takenaka Hanbei seized control of Inabayama Castle. I looked into what happened in the world in 1564. According to Wikipedia as follows.
- January 26 – Battle of Ula (Livonian War): A Lithuanian surprise attack results in a decisive defeat of the numerically superior Russian forces.
- February 15 – Galileo Galilei, Italian astronomer and physicist was born.
- February 18 – Michelangelo Buonarroti, Italian artist, architect and sculptor, passed away.
- March 25 – Battle of Angol in Chile: Spanish Conquistador Lorenzo Bernal del Mercado defeats and kills the toqui Illangulién.
- April 27 – William Shakespeare, English poet and dramatist, was born.
- June 22 – French settlers abandon Charlesfort, the first French attempt at colonizing what is now the United States, and establish Fort Caroline in Florida.
- November 21 – Spanish Conquistador Miguel López de Legazpi sails from Mexico. Later, he will conquer the Philippine Islands, founding Manila.
I can say « The world was Spanish oyster in 1564 » by quoting Shakespeare’s phrase.
Official Site(Japanese): http://www.city.himeji.lg.jp/guide/castle/
9:00AM – 4:00PM
Honcho 68, Himeji, Hyogo
Check Here: Himeji Castle on Google Map
20 minutes walk from Himeji Station(姫路駅)
JR Sanyo Line(山陽本線)
Sanyo Electric Railway(山陽電鉄)
JR Kishin Line(姫新線)
JR Bantan Line(播但線)