Samurai By Sophia Winters

Minamoto Yoritomo

Minamoto Yoritomo came to power, but did not want it. He set up a military, it had its own capital in the city of Kamakura.

Shogun: A Japanese military leader who also ruled on the emperors behalf

Daimyo: A large landowner with own private army (Samurai)

Samurai: Highly trained warriors

The Samurai had incredible armor and weapons. Their armor was very unique, flexible and intimidating. They wore a Kimono and baggy trousers underneath metal plates coated in lacquer. They were laced together with silk. Their arms also had panels of metal plates protecting them. When in battle, they wore scary masks made of iron. They were used to protect the face and scare the opponents.

Some examples oF weapons:Bow and Arrow, Spears, and swords

Swordsmanship became better than archery

Samurai learned to shoot an arrow without even thinking

Must know Martial Arts for one-on-one fighting

Samurai had to learn self-control and over come their emotions. Their panic could cause a disadvantage in battle. There was no relaxing, they always had to be on alert.

From "History Alive" What Samurai warriors were told

Samurai were taught arts, respect and Bushido. Bushido is the code of conduct that samurai warriors followed. It required for them to be generous, brave and loyal. If a samurai did not follow rules, dishonor their family, or is getting out of danger, they would preform Seppuku. Seppuku is a ritual suicide. They would get a sword and slash themselves in the abdomen. It was very serious and was taken seriously by samurai.

In the 17th century, samurai became students of culture but still, fierce warriors. Writing and literature became very important. A famous type of writing is Calligraphy. It is the art of beautiful writing. Poetry had also boomed, Matso Basho, a famous poet, was the creator of the haiku. The lines of a haiku go 5, 7, 5. The numbers represent the amount of syllables.

Example of Calligraphy

Samurai could be calm when they aren't in battle. They had silent tea ceremonies, for forming alliances, and finding the spirits of harmony, reverence and calm.

There were 2 common Buddhisms in the samurai world. Amida and Zen.


Founded by Honen. Amida buddhists believed all people could reach paradise, or the Pure Land. Amida was a Indian prince who would greet you when entering the Pure Land. Honen said believers will reach paradise if they say "Amida" 70,000 times in a day.

Statue of Amida


Emphasized effort, discipline, personal-reliance and meditation. Zen gardens would help find even more peace when meditation. This helped samurai overcome fears. Koans are puzzling questions that believers would ask themselves.


12th century

In the 12th century, women were expected to be as brave and strong as men. They were treated with respect, and could become warriors.

Tomoe Gozen and Korman were both fierce and great female samurai. Tomoe Gozen killed many enemies, and with much skill and precision. Korman respected her clan and saved her clan banner when they were under attack.

Tomoe Gozen

17th century

Women had a downgrade compared to the 12th century. They would have to take care of the household, and didn't even choose their own husbands. Peasant women were treated with some respect, but samurai women were under complete control.

Thank you!

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