THE SAMURAI
 

THE 47 RONIN - THE BOOK

The Revenge of the 47 Ronin: Edo 1703 is in the Raids Series and tells the true story of the famous revenge attack of 1703.

Most of what we understand about the 47 Ronin comes from a play written soon afterwards called Chushingura, the first of a long list of exaggerated versions of which the above movie is the latest. Here you can discover what really happened on that snowy night. Lord Kira's samurai were every bit as brave as the 47 Ronin - now you can read their story for the first time.

In 2010 I walked the course of the 47 Ronin's march to Sengakuji with the head of Lord Kira. There are photos of the sites and also several colour plates of the warriors and their weapons.

There are specially commissioned colour plates and also a birds eye cutaway of Kira's mansion.

So look out for The Revenge of the 47 Ronin: Edo 1703. That's right - even the traditional date is wrong - and there are a lot more surprises too.

 
 

THE SAMURAI MANUAL -UNOFFICIAL

Last year I was approached by Thames and Hudson, who publish a very jolly series of imitation 'training manuals'. Titles already in print include Gladiator and Medieval Knight. Would I like to produce a training manual for samurai?

All the information is accurate, but it is written in a light-hearted way as if it was actually written by a very pompous official under the Tokugawa.


 
 

THE SAMURAI SWORDSMAN:MASTER OF WAR

Every now and again I have the chance to write a lavishly illustrated large format book.

They are expensive to produce, but the results in The Samurai Swordsman are worth the expense.

This book replaces my earlier work The Lone Samurai, and unlike that modest book, this one is in full colour with nearly all new illustrations and two completely new chapters.

 
 

PREVIOUS HIGHLIGHTS

My latest book is Katana, all about the samurai sword. Look out also for my book on Samurai Women and a biography of Toyotomi Hideyoshi.

You will see some old stuff in Warriors of Medieval Japan, because this is my three Warriors books (Ninja, Ashigaru and Monks) bound together, BUT I have added a completely new section on samurai and have considerably revised the other three.

 

SAMURAI: THE STORY OF JAPAN'S NOBLE WARRIORS

This book is lavishly illustrated and provides a very good introduction to the samurai, particularly who someone who isn't a military buff.

It has the unique feature of 'dress your own samurai'. A series of transparent overlays allow you to arm three samurai from different ages and an ashigaru!

The illustrations have been printed perfectly. Here is a sample.

 
 

SAMURAI: WORLD OF THE WARRIOR

I was delighted when I was chosen to be the first author to relaunch an Osprey hardback series.

Samurai: World of the Warrior has a thematic approach. There are chapters on samurai pirates, samurai artillery and many other topics including the heroic story of the White Tigers of Aizu.

 
 

KAWANAKAJIMA 1553-1564

This is another volume by me in Osprey's acclaimed Campaigns series.

I spent a very cold week wandering the battlefield of Kawanakajima - (all five of them!),including climbing a motorway embankment to get a shot of the entire battlefield at Hachimanbara!

My mate Wayne Reynolds has produced the superb colour plates.

 
 

KEY PAPERS ON THE SAMURAI TRADITION

Over the years I have made good use of hundreds of academic papers on samurai topics, some of which were written over a century ago. Most of these are almost impossible to get hold of unless you have access to specialised libraries.

Japan Library, who publish The Samurai: A Military History, have published my two-volume set of such articles, entitled Key Papers on the Samurai Tradition. I have chosen a fascinating collection of important and little-known works.

I must warn you, however, that it is very expensive indeed, because it is a limited printing aimed at the library market in Japan. It is actually ú250.00... Here are the contents:

Key Papers on the Samurai Tradition

Volume 1: the Age of War

Turnbull, Stephen >Introduction: The Samurai Tradition and Japan=s Military Revolution= Farris, Wayne 1984 >From Soldier to Samurai= Transactions of the International Conference of Orientalists in Japan 28, 9 pp. 34-39. Friday, Karl 1993 >Valorous butchers: The Art of War during the Golden Age of the Samurai= Japan Forum 5,1 pp. 1-19 Wilson, William Ritchie 1973 >The Way of the Bow and Arrow: The Japanese Warrior in Konjaku Monogatari= Monumenta Nipponica 28 pp.177-233 Diosy, Arthur 1911 >Yoshitsune, the boy hero of Japan= Transactions and Proceedings of the Japan Society of London 10, pp. 50-77. Blacker, Carmen 1999 >Legends of Heike Villages: the Fugitive Warrior as Ancestor= Proceedings of the Japan Society 132 pp.5-12. Brownlee, John S. 1969 >The ShăkyŃ War and the Political Rise of the Warriors= Monumenta Nipponica 24, pp. 59-77. Shackley, Myra 1986 >Arms and the Men: 14th century Japanese swordsmanship illustrated by skeletons from Zaimokusa, near Kamakura, Japan= World Archaeology 18,2 pp.247-254. Birt, Michael P. 1985 >Samurai in Passage: The Transformation of the Sixteenth-Century Kantă= Journal of Japanese Studies 11,2 pp. 369-399. Brown, Delmer M. 1948 > The Impact of Firearms on Japanese Warfare, 1543-98' Far Eastern Quarterly 7, pp. 236-253. Gubbins, J. H. 1880 >Hideyoshi and the Satsuma Clan in the Sixteenth Century= Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Japan 8, pp. 92-143. Bodart, Beatrice M. 1977 >Tea and Counsel: The Political Role of Sen RikyŃ= Monumenta Nipponica 32, pp. 49-74. Turnbull, Stephen 1998 >Chinese influence on Japanese siege warfare= Royal Armouries Yearbook 3 pp. 145-158.

Volume 2: the Age of Peace

Steenstrup, Carl 1973 >The Imagawa Letter. A Muromachi Warrior=s Code of Conduct which became a Tokugawa Schoolbook= Monumenta Nipponica 28, pp. 295-316. Hall, John Whitney 1955 >The Castle Town and Japan=s Modern Urbanisation= Far Eastern Quarterly 15, pp. 37-56. Bonar, H. A. C. 1887 >On Maritime Enterprise in Japan= Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Japan 15, pp. 103-124. Itakura, Kiyonobu and Itakura, Reiko 1962 >Studies of Trajectory in Japan before the Days of Dutch Learning= Japanese Studies in the History of Science 1, pp. 83-91. Bottomley, Ian 1997 >A Remarkable Armour= Royal Armouries Yearbook 2, pp. 144-148. McClatchie, Thomas R. 1876 >The Feudal Mansions of Yedo= Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Japan 7, pp. 157-182. Moore, Ray A. 1970 >Adoption and Samurai Mobility in Tokugawa Japan= Journal of Asian Studies 29, 3 pp. 617-632. Dautremer, J. 1885 >The Vendetta or Legal Revenge in Japan= Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Japan 13, pp. 82-89. Ackroyd, Joyce 1957 >Women in Feudal Japan= Transactions of the Japan Society of London pp. 31-68. Rogers, John M. 1990a >Arts of War in Times of Peace: Archery in Honchă Bugei Shăden, Chapter 4' Monumenta Nipponica 45, 3 pp. 253-284. Bain, Edgar C. 1962 >Nippon-tă: an introduction to old swords of Japan= Journal of the Iron and Steel Institute 220, 4 pp. 265-282. Rogers, John M. 1990b >Arts of War in Times of Peace: Swordsmanship in Honchă Bugei Shăden, Chapter 5' Monumenta Nipponica 45, 4 pp. 413-447. Rogers, John M. 1991 >Arts of War in Times of Peace: Swordsmanship in Honchă Bugei Shăden, Chapter 6' Monumenta Nipponica 46, 2 pp. 173-202. Buck, James H. 1973 >The Satsuma Rebellion of 1877. From Kagoshima through the Siege of Kumamoto Castle= Monumenta Nipponica 28, 4 pp. 427-446. Allen, Louis 1976 >Death and Honour in Japan= The Listener June 24 1976 pp. 800-802.