The Mizukage (水影, literally meaning: Water Shadow) is the Kage of Kirigakure, a title bestowed on the village's leader. The Mizukage is generally regarded as the strongest shinobi in the village. There have been six Mizukage in the village's history.
The Mizukage position was created after the formation of Kiri by Byakuren, the village's founder, that in anime was the fourth of the five Kage to emerge. The position is filled by the strongest person in the village, regardless of considerations such as age. The Mizukage's building is the largest landmark in Kirigakure, bearing the kanji for Mizu (水, literally meaning: Water) on it.
Throughout history, the word of the Mizukage has influenced all political and military issues that arise in relation to Kiri and its inhabitants, with each of the first four leaders having their governments mainly marked by strong secrecy, strict internal politics and limited interaction with other villages. It was not until the reign of the Fifth Mizukage that the traditional governance of the position would undergo a reform which would restore diplomatic relations with other villages.
List of Mizukage
Main article: Gengetsu Hōzuki Gengetsu Hōzuki (鬼灯幻月, Hōzuki Gengetsu) was the Second Mizukage (二代目水影, Nidaime Mizukage, literally meaning: Second Water Shadow) of Kirigakure. He was also a member of the Hōzuki clan.
Main article: Yagura Karatachi Yagura Karatachi (枸橘やぐら, Karatachi Yagura) was the jinchūriki of the Three-Tails and the Fourth Mizukage (四代目水影, Yondaime Mizukage, literally meaning: Fourth Water Shadow) of Kirigakure. Yagura is chiefly remembered for a bloody, despotic reign that contributed to Kirigakure being well known as the "Bloody Mist". He was manipulated by Tobi, who could be called the "real" Fourth Mizukage.
Main article: Mei Terumī Mei Terumī (照美メイ, Terumī Mei) is the Fifth Mizukage (五代目水影, Godaime Mizukage, literally meaning: Fifth Water Shadow) of Kirigakure. After the dreadful reign of Yagura Karatachi ended, she became Mizukage and worked tirelessly to reform internal policies and recreate diplomatic relations with other villages.
Main article: Chōjūrō Chōjūrō (長十郎, Chōjūrō) is one of the last generation of Kirigakure's Seven Ninja Swordsmen of the Mist. He serves as the retainer of the Fifth Mizukage, before later becoming the Sixth Mizukage (六代目水影, Rokudaime Mizukage, literally meaning: Sixth Water Shadow) himself.