Tsuikahô 251: Concerning Hawking

Translated by Dan Sherer and Emily Warren

An Edo Period woodblock print of a hawk. ( Wikipedia Commons )

An Edo Period woodblock print of a hawk. (Wikipedia Commons)

Concerning Hawking:

Despite being forbidden by the Shogun, in recent years all sorts of ordinary people 1 have disobeyed continued orders {from Kamakura}. There are reports that in the various provinces 2 and within Kamakura, many people enjoy hunting. It is outrageous! Alas, they bring punishment upon themselves. Hawking is banned eternally, and from now onwards, if people commit {this crime}, they should {be made to} feel regret. However, hawking done for shrine offerings 3 does not fall within the scope of the prohibition. The above should be widely disseminated. So ordered by command of the shogun.

Kangen 3rd Year [1245], 12th Month, 16th Day

Governor of Musashi (Hōjō Tsunetoki) 4

Governor of Bizen {Nagoe Tokinaga} 5

Original Text 原文
一 鷹狩事、殊御禁制之処、近年甲乙人等、背代々御下知、云国々云鎌倉中、多好狩之由、有其聞、甚濫吹也、已招自科者歟、永可令停止、自今以後、猶令違犯者、可有後悔也、但於神社供祭鷹者、非制之限、以此旨普可被相触之条、依仰執達如件、   寛元三年十二月十六日            武蔵守(北条経時)判


Kundoku 訓読


一つ 鷹狩たかがりの事、

殊に御禁制ごきんせいの処。近年甲乙人等、代々の御下知おんげちそむき、国々といい鎌倉中といい、多く狩好むの由、其の聞えあり、甚濫吹らんすいなり。已に自科じかまねくものか、なが停止ちょうじせしむべし、自今以後、なお 違犯せしめば、後悔あるべきなり。ただ神社供祭ぐさいの鷹においては、制の限にあらず、此の旨をもって普く相触あいふれらるべきの条。仰せによりて執達件のごとし、



  1. Normally hawking was limited to those of higher rank. ↩

  1. Specifically the provinces (primarily in the east) that the Shogunate controlled. ↩

  1. Hawks could be used to catch shrine offerings, but possibly also to catch birds that would be sold to purchase shrine offerings. Unlike Buddhist temples, whose offerings were all vegetarian, shrine offerings were occasionally meat and often fish. ↩

  1. Hōjō Tsunetoki (1224-46) was a shogunal regent involved with the deposition of the fourth Kamakura shogun. He was appointed to the position of Governor of Musashi in 1243.

  1. (?-1252) Also called Hōjō Tokinaga. Tokinaga served as governor of Bizen from 1240-1246.