Sankin Kotai kept the daimyos wife and children as hostages for part of the year and limited the wealth the daimyos could maintain. This was done by forcing the daimyo to travel to different residences throughout Japan. Its added benefits were the establishment of Japan’s extensive road network during the Edo period as well as ensuring the daimyo was visible in various regions of the country and not only in capital. Because of this policy’s central position at the heart of the Japanese nation, it had an extensive influence on the lives of Japanese during the Edo period.
To begin with, the daimyos during this period led lives that were very circumscribed by the shogun and this policy of alternate attendance. Their wealth was extensively accounted for and they were only allowed a certain number of attendants, which would depend on the amount of rice generated in their fief. These rules were often strictly enforced. Daimyos were also forbidden to build new fortifications in their regions without the permission of the shogun. They weren’t even able to repair existing castles. The shogun’s watchful eye was always on them. Additionally, they were unable to enter into marriage alliances without the shogun’s permission. This was considered to be a treasonous act. This law had a huge effect on all of Japan, in particular on the economic growth of the various regions ruled by the daimyos. They had very little say in any of the important decisions that needed to be undertaken. Any rebel captured