Tag Archives: Samurai

A Flawless Victory?

Samurai-do reviews Phil Trent’s book Flawless Deception. It is nothing short of laudable that Phil Trent has taken on such an in-depth exegesis of a subject that is all too often considered sacred and immune from criticism. Koryu martial artists … Continue reading

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How to Kill a Samurai Part 2…

We will now address the issues that we brought up in part 1, namely getting past all of that armour. Before we even begin there, however, we must acknowledge something: confronting a fully armed and armoured samurai is really, really, … Continue reading

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How to Kill a Samurai: Part 1. How NOT to kill a Samurai!

Modern sporting Kendo came into mainstream popularity in Japan and later the west after the defeat of the Japanese empire by the Americans at the end of the second world war. As such it definitely falls into the category of … Continue reading

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From Slob to Samurai: how to wear Japanese armour and why it’s still important!

As a martial arts and Japanese history website, it would stand to reason that much of our readership would be extremely interested in both of these things as a hobby, or even as a profession. That said, it strikes me … Continue reading

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100 Days: Mastering the Japanese Spear

For being one of the main battlefield weapons of choice for Samurai and ashigaru throughout the sengoku jidai, there are surprisingly few schools of spearsmanship left today. In fact, there are only two that I know of: Owari Kan-ryu and Hozoin-ryu, … Continue reading

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Debunking Chiburi

I have always been told by one of my instructors that chiburi is the act of removing blood from the sword, in fact he has even stated this at events and demonstrations. A skeptic as always, I set out to … Continue reading

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The beginnings of Japanese Feudalism: The institutions of Jito and Shugo

In the aftermath of the Gempei war, Minamoto Yoritomo succeeded in his aim of setting up a seat of centralised power at Kamakura to rival the established bureaucracy in Kyoto. Having done this, however, Yoritomo was faced with two major … Continue reading

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Homosexuality in Feudal Japan

Homosexual practices are an integral aspect of samurai culture that is often overlooked or dismissed in studies of the Japanese warrior classes. Getting the fundamentals out of the way first, homosexuality between men was, in most cases, acceptable and widely … Continue reading

Posted in Azuchi-Momoyama Period, Edo Period, Japanese History, Muromachi Period | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

One of the greatest war stories of the Sengoku period: the battle of Mikatagahara

In the year 1572, Takeda Shingen saw an opportunity to make a full attempt at claiming Kyoto, the seat of power in Japan at the time. In order to wage an effective campaign further west, however, Shingen needed control of … Continue reading

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