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1584CE

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§Eastern Asia

§Japan

May 17 - The conflict between Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Tokugawa Ieyasu culminates in the Battle of Nagakute.

On the thirteenth day of the third month, Ieyasu arrived at Kiyosu Castle. On that same day, warriors of the Oda clan's vassals who were led by Ikeda Tsuneoki switched to the side of Hideyoshi and took over Inuyama Castle, which had originally been built by Oda Nobunaga. Ieyasu was upset upon hearing this news and rushed to Inuyama Castle, arriving two days later. At the same time, Mori Nagayoshi began his attempt for the castle. (Nagayoshi was the brother of Mori Ranmaru, who died at the Incident at Honnō-ji with Nobunaga.) Despite fierce arquebus fire from Mori's men, Sakai succeeded at flanking and attacking Mori in the rear. Mori fled, having suffered 300 casualties.

On the sixteenth day of the month, forces called to support Inuyama Castle arrived in Haguro. Ieyasu, however, had already known of these plans and had Sakai Tadatsugu and Sakakibara Yasumasa move 5,000 troops to Haguro that same evening. Early the following morning, Tadatsugu's troops launched a surprise attack on Nagayoshi, whose troops barely escaped after the onslaught. On the eighteenth, without fear of raids from enemies, Ieyasu took over Inuyama Castle and finished the protections that had first been built up by Hideyoshi.

Mission to Mikawa

Hideyoshi and his troops left his fortifications at Osaka Castle on the 21st day of the month, arriving at Inuyama Castle on the 27th day, and in Gakuden (present-day Inuyama) on the fifth day of the following month. Ieyasu, between entering Komakiyama Castle and arriving in Gakuden, had stayed away from battle, except for a few smaller skirmishes here and there. Hideyoshi was lulled into complacency by this situation, aided by Tsuneoki, who said to him, "Ieyasu is now in Komakiyama Castle. He is away from his main base in Okazaki and if we were to move our arms against him, we will certainly win." The ambitious Hideyoshi decided to set out for Mikawa, along with the support of Nagayoshi (who had regained his reputation at the Battle of Haguro), Tsuneoki (who was embarrassed by his daughters marriage) and the young Hidetsugu (17yo, at the time). Toyotomi Hidetsugu was able to amass 8,000 men, which were supported by Hori Hidemasa's 3,000 men, Mori Nagayoshi's 3,000 men and Tsuneoki's 6,000 men. On the following day, they all set out for Mikawa.

Battle of Iwasaki Castle

The Battle of Iwasaki Castle was fought between the forces of Niwa Ujishige and Ikeda Tsuneoki. Though it was just part of overall Battle of Komaki and Nagakute, it played an important role in the outcome.

On the seventh day of the month, Ieyasu learned of Hidetsugu's encampment at Shinogi (modern-day Kasugai) through the information provided by farmers in Iga Province. He entered into Obata Castle (Moriyama-ku, Nagoya) the following day and chose to pitch camp for the evening. Early the next morning, he sent both the Niwa clan and the forces of Sakakibara Yasumasa to chase after Hidetsugu, and followed shortly thereafter with his own. Hidetsugu resumed his march on the eighth after hearing of Ieyasu's entrance to Obata Castle, but on the next morning, the situation changed very rapidly. Ikeda Tsuneoki led the attack of Iwasaki Castle (modern-day Nisshin) and was promptly shot off of his horse. Embarrassed by his fall, Tsuneoki forgot about the hit-and-run tactics and started a full assault on the castle. Though the defenders fought well, the castle fell.

During the battle, Mori Nagayoshi, Hori Hidemasa and Hidetsugu all rested their forces at the modern-day cities of Owariasahi, Nagakute and Nisshin, waiting for the oncoming forces, as Ieyasu was closing in on them.

Battle of Hakusanmori

At the time that Ikeda Tsuneoki was shot and fell from his horse at Iwasaki Castle, Toyotomi Hidetsugu moved his forces to Hakusanmori (present-day Owariasahi) to rest, but it was there that he met the forces of Ieyasu and Sakakibara Yasumasu. Hidetsugu's forces were pretty much destroyed by Ieyasu's surprise attack. Hidetsugu himself was knocked from his horse, but was able to get another horse and escape. It was at this battle that many members of the Kinoshita clan (including Sukehisa, the father of Hideyoshi's wife, Nene) died.

Battle of Hinokigane

Following the battle of Hakusanmori, Tokugawa fortified Mt. Komaki, creating a stalemate there. Thus, Ikeda Nobuteru, one of Toyotomi Hideyoshi's chief commanders, decided to begin raids through neighboring Mikawa Province with an army numbering 20,000. Tokugawa expected this and led a force to follow Hideyoshi's. Mizuno Tadashige led Tokugawa's rearguard against Ikeda's force and the noise of the battle alerted Hori Hidemasa, the head of one of Hideyoshi's divisions.

Hori Hidemasa led his men to the defense of his comrades, taking up position in the village of Nagakute. He held off the initial Tokugawa attacks, but was forced to withdraw as the main body of the Tokugawa army, numbering some 9000 warriors, arrived.

Battle of Nagakute

The battle proper began as Ikeda's men opened fire with their arquebuses and then charged the Ii clan's divisions of the Tokugawa force. Mori Nagayoshi, another of Hideyoshi's commanders, waited until Tokugawa moved in to support the Ii, so that he could flank them. However, Tokugawa charged forward, rather than swinging around, and avoided the flanking maneuver. Mori Nagayoshi was shot off his horse, which demoralized Ikeda's force. Ikeda's head was taken soon afterwards and, despite Hideyoshi's arrival with reinforcements, Ieyasu decided to withdraw, unwilling to risk further casualties, and returned to Komaki.

§Europe

§Belgium

Ghent falls to the Spanish.

§France

June 1 - With the death of the Duc d'Anjou, the Huguenot Henry of Navarre becomes heir-presumptive to the throne of France. Henry of Navarre became the legal heir to the French throne upon the death in 1584 of François, Duke of Alençon, brother and heir to the Catholic King Henry III, who had succeeded Charles IX in 1574. Because Henry of Navarre was a descendant of King Louis IX, King Henry III had no choice but to recognise him as the legitimate successor. Salic law disinherited the king's sisters and all others who could claim descent by the distaff line. However, since Henry of Navarre was a Huguenot, this set off the War of the Three Henries phase of the French Wars of Religion. The third Henry, Duke Henry of Guise, pushed for complete suppression of the Huguenots, and had much support among Catholic loyalists. This set off a series of campaigns and counter-campaigns culminating in the battle of Coutras.

§Great Britain

Sir Francis Throckmorton was the son of Sir John Throckmorton and a nephew of Sir Nicholas Throckmorton, one of Elizabeth's diplomats. Sir John had held the post of Chief Justice of Chester but was removed in 1579, a year before his death. The reasons for Sir John's removal from the bench are unclear; he may have been guilty of abuses in the administration of justice, but he may also have been singled out for punishment for his pro-Catholic beliefs.

Throckmorton was educated in Oxford and entered the Inner Temple in London as a pupil in 1576. In 1580, he traveled to the European continent and met leading Catholic malcontents from England in Spain and France. After his return to England in 1583, he served as an intermediary for communications between supporters of the Catholic cause on the continent, the imprisoned Mary, Queen of Scots, and the Spanish ambassador Bernardino de Mendoza.

Throckmorton's activities raised the suspicions of Sir Francis Walsingham, Elizabeth I's spymaster. A search of his house produced incriminating evidence and, after torture on the rack, Throckmorton confessed his involvement in a plot to overthrow the Queen and restore the Catholic Church in England. An invasion led by Henry I, Duke of Guise would have been coupled with an orchestrated uprising of Catholics within the country.

Although Throckmorton later retracted his confession, he was convicted of high treason and executed in July.

Reginald Scot, a Member of Parliament, published a book that was ahead of its time. In Discoverie of Witchcraft, he claimed that supernatural powers did not exist. Thus, there were no Witches.

§Italy

The year 14 old Caravaggio was apprenticed for four years to the Lombard painter Simone Peterzano.

July 5 - Maronite College is established in Rome.

§Netherlands

The Catholic Frenchman Balthasar Gérard (born 1557) was a supporter of Philip II, and in his opinion, William of Orange had betrayed the Spanish king and the Catholic religion. After Philip II declared William an outlaw and promised a reward of 25,000 crowns for his assassination, which Gérard found out in 1581, he decided to travel to the Netherlands to kill William.

He served in the army of the governor of Luxembourg, Peter Ernst I von Mansfeld-Vorderort for two years, hoping to get close to William when the armies met. This never happened, and Gérard left the army in 1584. He went to the Duke of Parma to present his plans, but the Duke was unimpressed. In May 1584, he presented himself to William as a French nobleman, and gave him the seal of the Count of Mansfelt. This seal would allow for forgeries of messages of Mansfelt. William sent Gérard back to France to pass the seal to his French allies.

Gérard returned in July, having bought pistols on his return voyage. On 10 July, he made an appointment with William of Orange in his home in Delft, a convent known as the Prinsenhof. When William left the dining room and climbed down the stairs, Gérard shot him in the chest from close range, and fled.

Gérard fled through a side door and ran across a narrow lane, pursued by Roger Williams. Gérard had almost reached the ramparts, from which he intended to jump into the moat. On the other side a saddled horse stood ready. A pig's bladder around his waist was intended to help keep him afloat. However, he stumbled over a heap of rubbish. A servant and a halberdier of the prince who had raced after him caught him. When called a traitor by his captors, he is said to have replied, "I am no traitor; I am a loyal servant of my lord." "Which lord?", they asked. "Of my lord and master, the king of Spain". At the same time more pages and halberdiers of the prince appeared and dragged him back to the house under a rain of fists and beatings with the butt of a sword. Hearing his assailants chatter and convinced he heard the prince was still alive, he yelled "Cursed be the hand that missed!"

At the house he immediately underwent a preliminary examination before the city magistrates. Upon being interrogated by the magistrates, he reportedly showed neither despair nor contrition, but rather a quiet exultation, stating: "Like David, he had slain Goliath of Gath".

The magistrates decreed that the right hand of Gérard should be burned off with a red-hot iron, that his flesh should be torn from his bones with pincers in six different places, that he should be quartered and disemboweled alive, his heart torn from his bosom and flung in his face, and that, finally, his head should be taken off In the first night of his imprisonment Gérard was hung on a pole and lashed with a whip. After that his wounds were smeared with honey and a goat was brought to lick the honey off his skin with his sharp tongue. The goat however refused to touch the body of the sentenced. After this and other tortures he was left the night with his hands and feet bound together, as a ball, so he couldn't sleep. During the following three days, he was repeatedly mocked and hung on the pole with his hands tied behind his back. Then a weight of 300 metric pounds (150 kg) was attached to each of his big toes for half an hour. After this half hour Gérard was fitted with shoes made of well-oiled, raw dog's leather; the shoes were two fingers shorter than his feet. In this state he was put before a fire. When the shoes warmed up, they contracted, crushing the feet inside them to stumps. When the shoes were removed, his half-broiled skin was torn off. After his feet were damaged, his armpits were branded. After that he was dressed in a shirt soaked in alcohol. Then burning bacon fat was poured over him and sharp nails were stuck between the flesh and the nails of his hands and feet. Gérard is said to have remained calm during his torture. On 14 July 1584, Gérard was executed.

The town of Saeftinghe was completely submerged by sea water. During the Eighty Years' War, Dutch soldiers found themselves forced to destroy the last intact dike and Saeftinghe sunk into the waters of the Scheldt.

§North America

§United States

Sir Walter Raleigh planned an exploration sites for later colonies. The two ships were led by Philip Amadas of Plymouth and Arthur Barlow, with the pilot from Gilbert's expedition - Simon Fernandez.

June 4 - Sir Walter Raleigh sends an expedition to Roanoke Island, old Virginia (now North Carolina), with a view to establishing an English colony.

July 13 - Expedition landed. They met the brother of the chieftain of Roanoke Island.

An English fort and settlement with more than 100 men was established on the north end of the island, but it was abandoned the following year due to weather, lack of supplies and poor relations with the Native Americans. The colonists and natives didn’t get along despite the fact that the two local chiefs, Manteo and Wanchese, had been taken to England in hopes of forming good relations.

September - Expedition returned to England with items to display, including skins, a pearl necklace and two Indians - Manteo and Wanchese. These were put on show in London and used to help raise support (including the Queen's) for Raleigh's next expedition. Barlow's report was somewhat overenthusiastic which could have led future colonists to expect an easy life.

§Russia

Archangelsk is founded in northern Russia.

Feodor I succeeds his father Ivan IV as Tsar of Russia.

Czar Ivan died while either setting up a chess board, or while playing chess with Bogdan Belsky on March 18th. When Ivan's tomb was opened during renovations in the 1960s, his remains were examined and discovered to contain very high amounts of mercury, indicating a high probability that he was poisoned. Modern suspicion falls on his advisors Belsky and Boris Godunov (who became tsar in 1598). Three days earlier, Ivan had allegedly attempted to rape Irina, Godunov's sister and Fyodor's wife. Her cries attracted Godunov and Belsky to the noise, whereupon Ivan let Irina go, but Belsky and Godunov considered themselves marked for death. The tradition says that they either poisoned or strangled Ivan in fear for their own lives. The mercury found in Ivan's remains may also be related to treatment for syphilis, which it is speculated that Ivan had. Upon Ivan's death, the ravaged kingdom was left to his unfit and childless son Feodor.

§Southeastern Asia

§Thailand

Raja Ijau came to power and ruled the once Malay kingdom of Pattani.

§Sources

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