Get Your Premium Membership

Fujiwara no Shunzei Biography | Poet

Fujiwara no Shunzei Biography. Read biographical information including facts, poetic works, awards, and the life story and history of Fujiwara no Shunzei. This short biogrpahy feature on Fujiwara no Shunzei will help you learn about one of the best famous poet poets of all-time.

Photo of Fujiwara no Shunzei
Poems | Best Poems | Short Poems | Quotes


Fujiwara no Shunzei ( , 1114 - December 22, 1204) was a noted Japanese poet and nobleman, son of Fujiwara no Toshitada. He was also known as Fujiwara no Toshinari or Shakua ; in his younger days (1123–67), he gave his name as Akihiro, but in 1167, changed to Shunzei. He was noted for his innovations in the waka poetic form, and for his achievement in compiling Senzai Wakashu ("Collection of a Thousand Years"), the seventh Imperial anthology of waka poetry; this work was at the behest in 1183 of the Retired Emperor Go-Shirakawa, who despite Shunzei's low rank (he was merely "Chamberlain to the Empress Dowager", a nominal rank Miner describes as "pitiably low" ), admired him. Go-Shirakawa's trust in Shunzei is significant, as Imperial anthologies were landmarks in the poetic circles of the court, second to no other events in significance; poets were literally willing to risk their lives just for the chance to have a poem included. His son, Fujiwara no Teika, is considered one of the four best poets in Japanese history.