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After [[Toyotomi Hideyoshi]]’s successful conquest of Kyūshū, local warlord [[Matsuura Shigenobu]] was granted Hirado County and the Iki Island to be his domain. In 1599, Matsuura Shigenobu erected a castle called Hinotake-jō on the site of the present-day Hirado Castle. However, he burned the castle down himself in 1613, as a gesture of loyalty towards [[Shōgun]] [[Tokugawa Ieyasu]], having served in the losing Toyotomi side during the [[Battle of Sekigahara]]. In return, he was allowed to retain his position as ''daimyō'' of Hirado Domain under the [[Tokugawa bakufu]].
 
After [[Toyotomi Hideyoshi]]’s successful conquest of Kyūshū, local warlord [[Matsuura Shigenobu]] was granted Hirado County and the Iki Island to be his domain. In 1599, Matsuura Shigenobu erected a castle called Hinotake-jō on the site of the present-day Hirado Castle. However, he burned the castle down himself in 1613, as a gesture of loyalty towards [[Shōgun]] [[Tokugawa Ieyasu]], having served in the losing Toyotomi side during the [[Battle of Sekigahara]]. In return, he was allowed to retain his position as ''daimyō'' of Hirado Domain under the [[Tokugawa bakufu]].
   
The present Hirado Castle was constructed in 1704 by order of the 4th ''daimyō'' of Hirado domain, [[Matsuura Takashi]] with the assistance of the Tokugawa shogunate. It was intended to be the keystone in coastal defense in the East China Sea region, as the government had by then implemented a policy of [[sakoku|national seclusion]] against Western traders and missionaries. The design was partly influenced by the theories of the military strategist [[Yamaga Soko]]. The new construction was completed in 1718, and the castle remained home to the Matsuura ''daimyō'' until the Meiji Restoration of 1868.
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The present Hirado Castle was constructed in 1704 by order of the 4th ''daimyō'' of Hirado domain, [[Matsuura Takashi]] with the assistance of the Tokugawa shogunate. It was intended to be the keystone in coastal defense in the East China Sea region, as the government had by then implemented a policy of [[sakoku|national seclusion]] against Western traders and missionaries. The design was partly influenced by the theories of the military strategist [[Yamaga Soko]]. The new construction was completed in 1718, and the castle remained home to the Matsuura ''daimyō'' until the [[Meiji Restoration]] of 1868.
   
 
In 1871, with the [[abolition of the han system]], all structures of Hirado Castle were dismantled, with the exception of the northern gate, a ''[[yagura]]'' and the moat, and the grounds turned into Kameoka Park, with a [[Shinto shrine]] dedicated to the spirits of the successive generations of the Matsuura ''daimyō''. The former residence of the final ''daimyō'', [[Matsuura Akira]] was turned into a local history museum.
 
In 1871, with the [[abolition of the han system]], all structures of Hirado Castle were dismantled, with the exception of the northern gate, a ''[[yagura]]'' and the moat, and the grounds turned into Kameoka Park, with a [[Shinto shrine]] dedicated to the spirits of the successive generations of the Matsuura ''daimyō''. The former residence of the final ''daimyō'', [[Matsuura Akira]] was turned into a local history museum.

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