Council of Five Elders

"Until Hideyori reaches adulthood, I am asking for the help of the people whose names are listed in this document. This is the only request I want to make."

On the "fifth day of the eighth month", 1598, the Commissioners and the Regents signed the following articles:

Article 1. That they should serve Hideyori with the same single-minded loyalty they had shown to Hideyoshi

Article 2. The rules of Hideyoshi's house shall not be altered. When in the administration of public affairs the Five Commissioners were unable to determine on a course of action they were to consult their master (Hideyori) through Ieyasu and Toshiie, or necessary if taking action, the Emperor has to be consulted.

Article 3. There were to be no factions among them. Personal considerations and partiality of every kind were to be excluded from their counsel.

Article 4. The Five Commissioners, or overseers, must strive to work together in the administration of public affairs, suppressing all petty jealousies and differences.

Article 5. In settling matters the opinion of the majority was usually to be followed. But at the same time if the opinion of the minority showed no signs of being dictated by any personal interests, it should be duly considered. If it should happen that only a few of the overseers were present when some question was settled, the absentees had no right to object unless it was quite evident that the private interests of the Commissioners present at the meeting prejudiced their minds in a wrong direction. In that case another meeting might be called.

Article 6. It goes without saying that all accounts had to be kept in a manner that was above suspicion. There were to be no irregularities and no pressing of personal interests in this line.

Article 7. Whatever Hideyoshi desired to be kept secret, whether it were connected with his private life or with the Government, must on no account be allowed to leak out

He was allied with Ishida Mitsunari at the Battle of Sekigahara and acted as the head general of the Western Army.