There are at least two ways to legitimize a power base. One is to prove you have the right to rule, the other is to rule by force. In Japan’s feudal period, three leaders came to power and each ruler utilized some of the preceding ones principles of government, while at the same time adapting his mode of dominion on the prevailing factors of the day. Only one of these rulers had the right to rule by virtue of his lineage; perhaps this is why his reign lasted so much longer than the other two, or perhaps it is simply because of the foundations that the other two built that the Tokugawa dynasty lasted as long as it did. In either case, the reign of Tokugawa Ideas and his descendents is the culmination of events in the 16th Century, a period of struggle, war, bloodshed, persecution, and—ultimately—legitimization.
- Japanese warlords
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/michele_gibney/17/