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|Died||February 21, 1653(aged 84–85)|
Lady Tamura (田村御前)
Megohime, or Yoshihime (愛姫, 1568 – February 21, 1653) was a woman from the Azuchi–Momoyama period to the early Edo period. She is the daughter and only child of Tamura Kiyoaki, the lord of Miharu Castle, and Okita, daughter of Sōma Akitane. She was also the wife of Date Masamune. She was also known as Lady Tamura (田村御前). After fulfilling her pravrajya, her posthumous Buddhist name was Yōtokuin (陽徳院).
In 1579, she married her second cousin Masamune at the age of twelve. Unfortunately, her wet nurse was killed by Masamune, who suspected that betrayers from the Tamura clan were involved in the assassination attempt on him. It is said that her marriage got worse for a while because many other handmaidens serving her were executed.
However, after she moved to the Date residence in Jurakudai in Kyoto, her marriage seemed to be restored and she gave birth to Irohahime (Matsudaira Tadateru's wife) in 1594. From there, she had four children with Masamune, including Irohahime, Date Tadamune (the second lord of the Sendai Domain), Munetsuna Date, and Takematsumaru Date.
Even after she lived in the Date residence in Jurakudai, she might have played a role of a woman diplomat to inform Masamune of the Kyoto situation. In a letter addressed to him, she wrote:
"The world has not been stabilized yet. You should decide your course of action in accordance with the cause of the universe. Don't worry about me. I always have a knife with me. I'll promise not to be shamed."
When Masamune died on June 27, 1636, she entered the Buddhist priesthood under the Ungo Zenji and called herself Yōtokuin.
Megohime died on February 21, 1653, at the age of 86. It was the same day as the mensiversary of Masamune's death. Her graveyard is located in the Yotokuin mausoleum near the Zuigan-ji Temple.
She frequently asked Masamune and Tadamune to restore the Tamura family.
- In the NHK taiga drama Dokuganryū Masamune, she is portrayed by Junko Sakurada, and her younger incarnation by Kumiko Goto.
- In the NHK taiga drama Tenchijin, she is portrayed by Anne Watanabe (credited as Anne).
- In the ongoing anime series Masamune Datenicle, produced in coordination between Gaina and Date City, Fukushima, Megohime is portrayed as a 14-year-old girl.
- Ōshima Kōichi, Ichinoseki Domain (Clan Stories Series), ISBN 4-7684-7106-4, page 12
- From Megohime's lineage, her paternal grandmother (Tamura Takaaki's wife) and maternal grandmother (Lady Yakata, Sōma Akitane's wife) were both daughters of Tanemune Date, Masamune's great-grandfather.
- Since the Tamura family had no daughter other than Megohime, when Megohime married Masamune, the agreement was reached that the Tamura family would adopt their second son, but the second son, Munetsuna died young at the age of 16.
- Before the seventh anniversary of Masamune's death, a wooden statue of him was created by the order of Megohime and it is a valuable historical material to tell his appearance.
- Ōshima Kōichi, Ichinoseki Domain (Clan Stories Series), ISBN 4-7684-7106-4, page 15
- Ungo Zenji, a doshi (ceremony leader), left word about Megohime which tells her character, saying "she managed a household very well and was a merciful wise wife." The statue of Megohime in a nun's attire kept in the Zuigan-ji Temple is beautiful and she seemed to be a woman nicknamed as "a beautiful princess". It is said that she was Christian temporarily. Megohime once had a shrine in the precincts of Aoba Shrine, but has since been moved to the main shrine.
- The excavation research on Zuihōden in 1974 showed that her husband, Masamune had blood type B and her son, Tadamune, A-type blood, and therefore it is assumed that Megohime had A- or AB-type blood.
- Ōshima Kōichi, Ichinoseki Domain (Clan Stories Series), ISBN 4-7684-7106-4, page 14
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