Shoguns were hereditary military chiefs selected by the emperor. However, true authority was held by the shoguns, who collaborated closely with various classes in Japanese society. Shoguns collaborated with civil workers who oversaw programs like as taxation and trade. They also worked with military leaders who would fight wars on their behalf. The emperor gave orders through ministers and advisors.
The office of shogun existed from 1185 until 1868, when it was abolished by Emperor Meiji. During this time, 16 rulers are known by name; more may have existed in secret. The last official shogun was Tokugawa Iesada. In reality, all authority belonged to the senior generals and officers of the army. These men made the rules regarding whom the emperor could appoint and remove from office. They decided what policies to follow and enforced them ruthlessly. If anyone resisted, they had him executed.
In order for the shoguns to remain powerful, they needed allies. Often times, the first thing a new shogun did was to make friends with important people in Japan. He might give them posts in government or allow them to keep their positions even after they became old or sick. In exchange, these people would help the shogun gain support among the nobility and the soldiers.
For example, one ally was a famous swordsman named Miyamoto Musashi.
The military tyranny of a dynasty The shogunate was Japan's hereditary military government (1192–1867). Legally, the shogun reported to the emperor, but as Japan developed a feudal society, control of the military became synonymous with control of the country. The office of shogun was held by 84 men; there were also several attempts at constitutional shoguns who ruled according to law but did not gain the support of the army.
In practice, power rested with a small group of powerful generals and officials known as the "Tokugawa clan". They controlled all aspects of life in their domain, including religion, so they are called the "Shogunal ancestors" or "Honorable ancestors".
There are two main theories about why the Tokugawas were able to maintain their rule despite the presence of an imperial palace about which they had no influence: some historians believe that they managed to balance between the two powers (imperial and military) while others claim that the only objective of their rule was profit. Whatever the case may be, it can be said that they played an important role in the history of Japan.
The shogunate was established in 1192 when Emperor Go-Toba appointed his son-in-law Yoritomo shoga, the first samurai lord of Kamakura, as head of a military council.
The shogunate was Japan's hereditary military government (1192–1867). The office of shogun was held by more than 70 men during its existence.
So yes, the shogunate was a dictatorship. Its leader, the shogun, had all the power; there were no political parties in Japan until well into the 19th century. Even then, they were not really parties in the modern sense of the word, but small groups of powerful individuals who could band together and influence government decisions through bribery or coercion.
During its most stable period, from 1603 to 1868, Japan went through almost constant warfare, often involving several major powers. This last stage of Japanese history is known as the "Warring States Period".
All in all, it can be said that the shogunate was responsible for much of the progress made by Japan during its medieval period, but also caused much of its turmoil as well. It would eventually lead to the collapse of the samurai class, which was one of the foundations of early modern Japan.
The Emperor was ancient Japan's formal ruler. The Shogun was the military commander, whereas the Emperor was only a symbolic figure with no real power. During the preceding Heian Period, the Shogun had significant military, religious, and political influence. But following defeat in war by the Mongol Empire in 1221, the Samurai class lost their power and the monarchy was restored.
In 1603, Tokugawa Ieyasu defeated Toyotomi Hideyoshi at the Battle of Sekigahara, thus ending the Warring States period and beginning the Edo period. Ieyasu established his own dynasty, the Tokugawa shogunate, which ruled Japan with an iron hand for nearly 200 years. The office of emperor remained vacant during this time.
So, a Shogun was not an Emperor, but instead was only one among many powerful leaders who ruled their territories as vassals of the Japanese imperial family. There were several other feudal lords like the Shoguns who ruled parts of Japan from around 1200-1868, including one who was known as the "First Shogun" (Yoritomo). After Yoritomo's death, his son Yoshimune continued to rule but did not use the title "Shogun". Instead, he called himself "Governor of Ushiku".