Chikugo was one of the 68 ancient provinces of Japan. Part of the Saikaido, or "western sea route," it was located in what is now the southern part of Fukuoka prefecture, and bordered on Hizen, Chikuzen, Bungo, and Higo provinces.
Chikugo was established as an administrative unit when the larger province of Tsukushi was divided up in the mid 7th century. During the Sengoku Period, Chikugo was generally dominated by the Otomo clan, but was broken up into numerous smaller fiefs known as the "15 Castles of Chikugo." During the Edo Period, Chikugo was divided into three feudal domains - Yanagawa and Miike domains in south, and Kurume domain in the north.
With the establishment of the modern system of Japanese prefectures in 1871, Chikugo ended more than a millenium as an active administrative unit of the Japanese government, but the name Chikugo is remembered today in numerous local place names and the name of the local dialect of the region, which is known as "Chikugo-ben."