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Signs of Ieyasu being an absolutist leader show in his brutality in certain situations in order to secure or display his power. For instance, in the siege of Osaka Ieyasu executed all of Hideyoshi's family except for his wife, because she was related to Ieyasu.
These actions show how Ieyasu was extremely focused on keeping power in only the Tokugawa family, and more specifically, himself. Tokugawa practically controlled Japan 1600 to 1616.
Another way Ieyasu displayed his power was by issuing a new coinage system to all of the Japanese people. He introduced the Tokugawa coinage.The name of the coinage also shows the power of Tokugawa Ieyasu.
Tokugawa Ieyasu did have an overall positive effect on Japan however, as he did increase commerce with the new coinage system and he created peace within Japan after unifying all of the territories.
Ieyasu did not live particularly fabulously in his years of rule, which shows he did not draw vast amounts of wealth or power from Japan. His most fabulous hobby was falconry, which was not very expensive.
Tokugawa Ieyasu was partially an absolutist because he did hold all of the power in Japan for 16 years, but he did not use this power and wealth as often as most absolutist rulers. Also most importantly, he did not abuse his wealth or power.
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