Half Blind Date.

Now that the Blue Samurai are out of the picture for another 4 years, let's pay a visit to some 侍 (Samurai) of a more ancient nature. Thanks to DeAgostini, I acquired yet another binder (be sure to hit the label below for more binders) only this time, I actually put it to use. Here is the cover of the latest データファイル (data file) and I used the binder in a lesson with a group of old ladies who helped translate it and practice their English at the same time!

What follows are the separating pages, the red one is 武将名鑑 (Bushou Meikan = famous Samurai); the purple one is 合戦リスト (Kassan = Battle List); the yellow one is 名城コレクション (Na-Shiro = Famous Castles Collection); the maroon one is 風俗トピックス (Fuzoku Topics = Customs); the olive green one is 戦タイムズ (Senroku Times = Age of the Civil War.)

I passed the File around the room and had each lady tell me a bit of the History of most of the individuals therein, starting with 織田 信長 (Oda Nobunaga) who was a famous 大名 (Daimyo = territorial lord) born in 1534 in Gifu, who owned a castle at age 9, had Azuchi Castle built when he was 43 and was assassinated by one of his lieutenants at the age of 49. An interesting tidbit that is not in the book is that 織田 信成 or Nobunari Oda, an Olympic Figure Skater is a direct descendant of the Oda clan!

真田幸村 (Sanada Yukimura) was a Samurai born in 1567 in Yamanashi-Ken. His father & brother died in battle while fighting at his side and he himself was killed in Osaka in 1615 at the age of 49.

But the one guy that everyone piped in on was Sendai's very own 伊達 政宗 (Date Masamune) The first link will take you to his Museum, the second to his Mausoleum and this one to his Castle. Date Masamune was born in 1567 in Yamagata and when he was 5, he was blinded in his right eye by small pox. (Now do you understand this post's title?) As a youth he was in many battles and moved from Yamagata to Yonezawa Castle when he was 18 and again to Iwadeyama in Miyagi when 25. At the age of 26, he fought against Korea in 1592. In 1600, he moved to Sendai and built Sendai Castle. He fought in two more battles when aged 47 & 48, helping General Tokugawa Eiyasu and died in 1636 in Edo (present day Tokyo.)

I hope you enjoyed this little excursion into the history of Samurai. Ya see, I'm not just an Otaku who posts on all things geeky. I have a serious side as well. Here are a few more pictures, that the students didn't know much about so they didn't go into detail:

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