10 Enticing Facts About Samurai

10 Enticing Facts About Samurai

“Bushido is realized in the presence of death. This means choosing death whenever there is a choice between life and death. There is no other reasoning.”
― Tsunetomo Yamamoto, Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

What do you decipher when you hear the word ‘Samurai’? Well, definitely an individual who is a warrior, and belong to the pre modern Japan era. There is much more to it.

So, here are some really interesting and fascinating facts about Samurai, which will evoke your thought process:

1. Suicide ritual

– yes, you read that right! Seppuku is the suicide ritual performed by Samurai. It is the suicide a samurai needs to pursue when he follows Bushido or there is likelihood that he will be captured by an enemy. It can be an honorable punishment or a voluntary act.

10 Enticing Facts About SamuraiSeppuku is the suicide ritual performed by Samurai.

2. Physical traits

– you would think that Samurai were gigantic and really tall. But, the fact is different from this. In reality, they were tiny and very slim. Yet again, the Samurais are noticeably hairier with lighter skin tone.

10 Enticing Facts About SamuraiIn reality, samurai were tiny and very slim.

3. Knowledgeable

– Indeed, since the Samurai were associated with the noble class, the members were well educated. They were skilled in Mathematics and well learned. They were perfect in calligraphy, flower decoration and literature.

10 Enticing Facts About SamuraiThe majority of samurai were very well-educated.

4. Armaments

– in most of the pictures, portraits and movies you must have witnessed samurai to be utilizing a sword like structure. That sword was called as chokuto. This continued to change its form. And then, the samurai started using spears, katana, yumi and even a rifle. So, there were indeed a plethora of arms and armaments at their disposal.

10 Enticing Facts About Samurai

5. Sense of style 

– since, they belonged to the noble class and were warriors, they dressed to suit their techniques, their attacks and avail the comfort level. They ensured that there was surplus movement of their body in the clothes that adorned them. Hence, a kimono, a hakama trouser and the topknot hairstyle, wooden sandals were witnessed.

10 Enticing Facts About SamuraiHandcolored portrait of a Japanese man in armour (Image Source)

6. Many

– most of the people are with the perception that the samurai were a rare elite force or a small group of noblemen. However, in reality they were an entire social class. In fact, almost 10 in every 100 Japanese populations were Samurai at its peak time.

10 Enticing Facts About Samurai

7. Western Samurai 

– There has been allowed special circumstances when someone from out of the Japan could fight along with the samurai and become one. This honor can, however, be only given to leaders such as daimyos or shogun. Taking the reference from the history, 4 western men have been granted this power, William Adam-an adventurer, Jan Jostens van Lowenstein- his colleague, Edward Schnell-arms dealer and Eugene Collache- a navy officer.

10 Enticing Facts About SamuraiHistory knows four Western men who have been granted the dignity of the samurai: adventurer William Adams, his colleague Jan Joosten van Lodensteijn, Navy officer Eugene Collache, and arms dealer Edward Schnell.

8. Homosexuality 

– it is now that people are opening about homosexuality and some are even accepting it. However, with the Samurai culture, it was never considered taboo. In fact, the sexual relationship between an experienced samurai and a youth he was training called wakashudo was common.

10 Enticing Facts About Samurai

9. Armour

– indeed, this is another of the amazing adornment of the Samurai. It was sturdy yet flexible to allow good movement. In fact the plates of leather or metal were nicely bound with laces of leather or silk.

10 Enticing Facts About SamuraiThe samurai armor, unlike the armor worn by European knights, was always designed for mobility.

10. Female Samurai 

these women who received samurai like training in martial arts and techniques were called Onna Bugeisha. Since, there is not much reference in history, hence; they were definitely less in number.

10 Enticing Facts About SamuraiRare vintage photograph of an onna-bugeisha, one of the female warriors of the upper social classes in feudal Japan (emerged before Samurai)
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