I was wondering how long a Hokage stays in power.

The 3rd was still alive when Minato was chosen as Hokage. So was Tsunade when Kakashi was chosen. Then the same with him when it was Naruto's turn. So how long does a Hokage stay in power?

  • 1
    I think they can step down if they think the next one is ready. Commented Nov 22, 2016 at 19:40

1 Answer 1


As far as I know, it's never been mentioned exactly how long they can stay in office. But like you mentioned in your question, the 3rd, 5th, and the 6th were still alive when the next Hokage was chosen. I would assume they can stay in office as long as they want or back down once they feel their successor (if they've chosen one) is ready.

(I think Tsunade mentioned something about her term ending in Kakashi Hiden. Don't take my word though.)

I made some research, and everything I stumbled upon only mentions something like this:

The Hokage typically selects their successor.

Meaning they can select who will become Hokage once they've died or stepped down. (Something similar to what I've mentioned above.)

Continued by:

If they die or are otherwise incapacitated, the next Hokage is instead chosen by the daimyō of the Land of Fire pending approval by Konoha's jōnin. If one of the Hokage's predecessors is still alive, they may return to office rather than select a new Hokage, as when the Third came out of retirement following the Fourth's death.


Sorry if my answer is not helpful. I didn't find much that would help anyway. I will edit and maybe add more to it.

  • Scouring the WIki: Hiruzen (third) was selected to be Hokage in the First great Shinobi War. The second happend 20 years later, and the third was a long war of attrition happened some time after that, in which Hiruzen stepped down to Minato for about a year, only to become the Hokage for about 14 more years after minato's death before his own. Hiruzen was Hokage for at least 35 years, but it could have been as much as 45 years since he was pretty young when he became hokage, and died at about 70 years old.
    – Ryan
    Commented Nov 23, 2016 at 16:51

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