About the Battle of Okehazama
Imagawa Yoshimoto, who was based in Suruga (present-day Shizuoka Prefecture) and was expanding his domain westward, took personal command of an enormous army - 20,000 soldiers according to some, 45,000 according to others - and advanced westward in order to take control of Owari (present-day Aichi Prefecture) in June, 1560.
The forces of Owari which opposed him, on the other hand, numbered only 3,000 soldiers in total. Their general was Oda Nobunaga, a young man regarded as a dunce. Though the Oda army was at an absolute disadvantage in military strength, they won a brilliant victory in a fierce battle against the Imagawa army at Okehazama.
The outcome was a stunning upset, giving the "Battle of Okehazama" a permanent place in history, and writer Izawa Motohiko called it "the most miraculous come-from-behind drama in world history". However, many mysteries about this battle remain, such as how Oda's army was able to overcome such an overwhelming difference in military strength.
1534 - 1582
Born the heir of Oda Nobuhide, the Warring States daimyo of Owari, Nobunaga became the lord of the original Nagoya Castle, and chief retainer Hirate Masahide served as his tutor.
After Nobuhide died, Nobunaga inherited his estate at the young age of 19. He kept the Saito clan of Mino and the Matsudaira clan of Mikawa in check, ended the conflict with the governor and deputy governor of Owari, and suppressed the strife within the Oda family. By 1559, one year prior to the Battle of Okehazama, he had succeeded in uniting nearly all of Owari.
Because Nobunaga's appearance and behavior up to adolescence had been eccentric, he was known as the "great dunce of Owari", but some believe this was a ruse intended to deceive his enemies both within and beyond his domain.
1519 - 1560
Yoshimoto was the 11th lord of the Imagawa clan, a Warring States daimyo who controlled Suruga and Totomi. He pushed for military reforms that included adoption of the Yorioya-Yoriko system of dependent relationships between retainers, and he fought against Nobuhide, the father of Oda Nobunaga, as he extended his influence into Mikawa.
In addition to his military and diplomatic success in forging a tripartite alliance called Ko So Sun with Takeda Shingen and Hojo Ujiyasu, he showed a remarkable aptitude for domestic affairs through such acts as the addition of 21 articles to the Imagawa Kana Mokuroku (the legal code of the Imagawa clan). He was known as "the greatest bowman of the Kaido region".