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Samurai Knights Warriors

The samurai of feudal Japan and the medieval knights of European countries had main similarities and variances. The evaluation between these two elite, aristocratic warriors can be shown through their honour, armed forces technology, and issues a typical warrior had to handle on a day to day basis. Their purposes as well as the basic concept of their codes, chivalry and bushido, were almost exactly similar. Furthermore, Samurai and knights both confronted trouble against new modern solutions including the arquebus, even although samurais' deftness in archery was extremely proficient. Even though the definition of samurai and knight are essentially parallel, both had many dissimilarities.

The two warriors of Japan and European countries were alike because they been around to serve a similar purpose. Samurai or another name bushi, were in the beginning warriors hired by powerful households to fight the Yamato judge by at the Nara Period's end around 793 C. E. (Turnbull, 32) Down the road, Samurai were vassals appointed by a daimyo or lord who own a large amount of land. In exchange, the samurai would get a specific amount of koku, the unit of measure of rice, and a destination to sleeping in the daimyo's property. (Wilson, 170) A daimyo would expect complete loyalty from a samurai and the work to the daimyo would come before any personal issues including faith and family. (Sansom, 368) Full duty and loyalty towards a daimyo pertains to Bushido, or the way of the warrior.

According to Inazo Nitobe, a Japanese publisher, bushido had seven key prices: Justice, courage, benevolence, politeness, veracity, honour, and devotion. Stephen Turnbull contradicted Nitobe by stating "such was the recognition of Nitobe's work that not only was all this completely accepted, but his other misconception. . . " (Turnbull154) Bushido had not been a thought carved into natural stone, but instead a "general frame of mind" from samurai. (Turnbull 156) The things that Turnbull said involve some truth because both samurai, Torii Mototada and Miyamoto Musashi acquired completely different thoughts towards the concept of Bushido. Mototada expresses his complete devotion to his daimyo when he published his last notice to his child before the fall of the Fushimi castle in 1600 when he published

For myself, I am solved to make a stand inside the castle, and die a quick death. . . But that's not the true interpretation to be a warrior. . . to show one's weakness is not within the family customs of my master Ieyasu. It is not just how of the warrior to be shamed and prevent loss of life even under circumstances that are not specifically important. It goes with out declaring that to sacrifice one's life for one's master can be an unchanging principle. (Turnbull, 156)

Mototada explicitly says that he must perish for his daimyo to maintain his loyalty. Musashi on the other hands, entirely declined the thought of dying for a daimyo when he said "The real way of swordsmanship is to battle with your opposition and win. . . your real intention shouldn't be to pass away with weaponry worn uselessly at your part. " (Wilson, 162)

There is a name for ritual suicide committed by way of a samurai if indeed they feel they may have failed their daimyo in retaining their loyalty and responsibility. A samurai would also commit suicide if his daimyo is wiped out and the samurai feels he must be present at with him into the next world. (Wilson, 274) Seppuku or Hara-kiri involved a samurai stabbing himself in the abdominal usually with a dagger. Seppuku could be performed either as a well prepared slow ritual inside a domicile or an instant and simple death. (Turnbull website) Either way, the process would have definitely been unpleasant and sometimes, a samurai would require another soldier to take off his head to end the pain of seppuku. In addition to retaining their devotion as a reason for committing suicide, a samurai may also destroy himself if he was captured by an foe or failed to accomplish a objective, though samurai seldom wiped out themselves like in such tendencies. (Turnbull, website) Knights of Europe could have seen this become greatly foreign since there have been never any incidents of a knight committing suicide out of respect. (Turnbull, website) A knight indeed might have been dedicated to combat for a reason if they wanted to, as shown in the crusades, however they never to an degree of killing himself.

Like the samurai, knights were vassals and were basically the same as samurai by classification. They were aristocratic men who had been vassals and paid their military services services to dukes or counts which were great landlords and managed the safeness and system over a region. (Cantor, 7) Dukes and matters off their vassals wished, like the daimyo, loyalty. The vassals could pay this through military services, rents, and fees. There was a notable difference between Japanese and Western european vassals though. In Japan, all vassals were samurai, but in Europe, not all vassals were knights since knights can have their own vassals who also might well have their own vassals and so forth. (Sansom, 368) Another difference was that the contemplation that the count number or duke owed to the knight was on paper in a contract called a charter, but in the Japanese version, the samurai did not require anything from the daimyo before hand. (Sansom, 368) Some things the duke owed a knight for their services were a destination to sleep, free dishes in his castle, a horse and armour. The knight also received an integral part of the duke's land within the offer that was called a fief. (Cantor, 7)

In order to gain their fighting techniques and skill using swords and other equipment, knights would take up themselves in competitions against other knights. Before a fight between knights, a knight had to be properly outfitted with armour usually consisting of chain mail in addition to breastplates and open-faced or full helms. Having many servants present was necessary to be able to fully provide a knight with such armour. In order to show affection for their female, a knight would also wear a headscarf attached to their helmet. (Turnbull, website) The samurai on the other hand, didn't usually express this type of emotion. When they did however, it was to complete another quest as it shows in "Gikeiki, a life of Minamoto Yoshitsune, there's a scene where in fact the hero seduces a young woman, but his actual motive is the acquisition of a Chinese navy scroll possessed by her dad! (Turnbull, website) During competitions, knights would wield long blunted lances or swords and demand at each other while on horseback. (Cantor, 44) Even though weaponry were blunted, knights still got harmed from blows stunning the neck area. Most knights were aware of the risk of injury, therefore when a knight was forcibly dismounted off their horse, the battle was over. Palm to hand fight on the ground was dangerous. (Cantor, 50) Not battling on the floor during competitions was purely due to risk of danger, not due to common misinterpretation of knights being immobile when off of their horses. While on foot, knights could move around swiftly enough. Knight's plate armour would have chainmail on the armpits so they could raise and lower their biceps and triceps quite easily. (Cantor, 46)

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