Essay Sample on the Samurai: The Warriors of the Bow and Arrow

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  1074 Words
Date:  2023-02-11

Question 1

There are various ways in which the Samurai could be defined. However, the best description for a samurai is that 'samurai is a mounted archer.; The Japanese history can be traced to the time of 'the bow and arrow' which had been used by the Samurai worriers. The skill of Samurai archery required dedication and practice that was done for several years before it was mastered. By the end of the third century, many Japanese Warriors were using longbows which were at least two metres in length known as Maruki yumi. Just like the other parts of the world, this was asymmetrical bow because hand grip was at the centre. At the end of the 8th century, many samurai worriers were submerged with the Japanese Warriors. The Samurai developed what was known as the (kyuba no Michi) which means the way of the bow. This term later on developed into what was known as the way of the Warrior or Bushido (bushido). It is accepted that a bushi who is a member of Warriors class developed ritual warfare that was based on individual battles between mounted Archers. These battles were supposed to happen after a warrior issued a challenge. It involved a Samurai charging onto each other, and shooting their arrows while they are willing their horses before they return to the line. The use of the asymmetrical bow was a unique activity in Japan because it was made of a composite construction of Mulberry wood which was added to layers of bamboo at the back. A typical bow for the mounted Warriors was 7 feet inches tall.

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The Samurai have mounted Archers. While they were seated at the house back, the Samurai held their bowls over their head so as to clear the horse and then bring it down with their left arm straight. A horse was a trade of all the Samurai; it was a skill that involved shooting the arrows straight from the horseback while in battle. Shooting the arrows from the back required that they could only shoot on the left side along a narrow arc. This legendary skills for mountain samurai archery came as a result of numerous hours of practice and drilling procedures for the Samura recruits. It was an art that also incorporated religious practice that required several hours of medication before one could become a samurai mounted Archer.

Numerous stories have been told about the Great feats of legendary samurai archers. One of them is Minamoto Tametomo who is said to have sunk a ship through hitting it below with an arrow while submerged deep in the sea waters. The other instance was the battle of Kashima that took place in the year 1184. In this battle, a fan was hung on ship as the opposing Samurai were challenged to shoot the fan down. Nasu Yoichi was one of the samurai warriors who were on horseback within the water which hit the fan will the first arrow despite the ship being rocked by waves.

The Samurai mounted archers had arrows that were made from bamboo and duck feathers that were mainly used in fletching. The arrows were also tipped with iron points and kept in a locked box so as to hold them in place. Every battle started with an arrow being shot in the air. The arrows had burning fire as they were fired high into the sky over the lines of the enemy. The samurai archers used the arrows that whistle and gave a sound known as Kami (the Shinto gods) so as to make them aware of the deeds that are about to be performed. Samurai warriors always won their battles. Hence, from the given options, the most suitable alternative that best describes a samurai warrior is a mounted archer because the samurai warrior spent several years of their lives practicing archery skills and making a special type of arrows and bows.

Question 2

Minamoto Yoritomo, who was the famous founder of the bakufu system, where the majority of the feudal lords ruled Japan for more than 700 years. He was born in the year 1149 and to die in the year 1199. Minamoto Yoritomo established Constable and district stewards in all Japanese provinces. This was to ensure that head all the control of all the people and was liked by all his warriors. As a result, he undermined all the local government authorities. As a Supreme Lord, one reason why Minamoto Yoritomo's was successful in his methods was because of his reward for the Followers. This enabled him to establish institutionalized structures that went for more than 700 years, even after his lifetime. The institutional structures also evolved over the course of the time. He gave his Shugo a place in the province where they administered the policies that affected Minamoto vassals at the local level.

The Shugo was also responsible for administering judicial proceedings for acts such as rebellion and murder. Through being given the power to conduct all the operations that involved the law and crime, the Shugo became loyal and served Minamoto with dignity. Also, they were promised that all their descendants and their royalties would be rewarded. The constant rewards proved to be the basis of all the loyal followers that reigned over the place for centuries. This allowed him to acquire all the military positions in every province. In an effort to supervise the States individually, he also rewarded his followers by putting an office of jito for them to levy taxes and administer the management duties. The Followers who are loyal to him who given the positions of the Shugo and the jito and they also became feudal lords. The lords represented him at the lower level. This made him the lord supreme with other lords just below his command. He therefore ruled and was more powerful than the local government. All the administrative intervention or the administrative power of the local government only affected very few people. In the year 1185, he destroyed Fujiwara Yasuhira, which was an independent noble at the time in a place called Tohoku. Through doing this, he demonstrated his ambition of creating a power structure that was independent of the capital, Kyoto. In the year 1192, he titled himself seii taishogun which meant that he was a supreme commander of all the other feudal Lords that he had. All these decisions were well calculated, and it leads to continuous reign that lasted for more than 700 years in Japan.

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