The Life of Samurai

Topics: Samurai, Saigō Takamori, Boshin War Pages: 3 (963 words) Published: April 25, 2013
The samurai were fearless warrior, who became powerful in Japan around the 1200s. The samurai, which means "those who serve," were hired by lords to fight their wars and protect their land. The samurai were expert fighters; they were skilled with the sword and bow and arrow, and they were superior horsemen. They were athletic and strong, and they developed their fighting skills into what is the basis of modern martial arts. The samurai had a code of honor called Bushido, which meant "Way of the Warrior." The samurai had to have unquestionable loyalty to the emperor and their lord (the daimyo). They were trustworthy, honest, kind and generous to the poor. They led feudal lives and had no interest in riches or jewels. They were only interested in honor and pride. Additionally, they had to be men of noble spirit who were not afraid of death, because death in battle only meant honor to their lord and family. If samurai lost a battle or a fight, they would have to commit seppuku rather than face dishonor. The samurai developed a special way of dressing. They wore their hair tied back in a top-knot, and their brow and crown were shaved. Samurai wore simple clothes when they were not fighting. However, when they were fighting, they wore armor that was made from leather or iron strips, so it was completely flexible. Their most important weapon and sign of their class was a pair of matching swords. Only samurai had the right to carry swords. They believed that swords had special powers. The people who made swords were master craftsmen, and to this day, people can tell who created the sword of a samurai by the way the blaze was making. The woman of the samurai followed the same code of ethics as the men did. Since the privileges and rights of the samurai were passed down from father to son, it was important for a wife to have a male child. Sometimes, a samurai took another wife if the first wife did not give birth to a son. Samurai women were trained fighters like their...
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