A samurai and his horse bound up the bank of a river to come to grips with the enemy. Precious sword in hand, the tsuba, or hand guard, is clearly visible. For hundreds of years great artistry was worked into the tsuba.


Katana Handguards

By Peter Suciu

The swords of the samurai have long been desirable to collectors. Now, even their parts have become prized. Read more

Was Emperor Showa ("Hirohito" as he is typically referred outside Japan) a warmonger, pacifist, or both?


The Real Hirohito/Emperor Showa

by Blaine Taylor

He was the longest-reigning monarch and head of state in the 20th century, and the third-longest in history behind King Louis XIV of France (72 years) and England’s Queen Victoria (64 years). Read more


Siege of Osaka Castle

By Eric Niderost

In 1611 Tokugawa Ieyasu had every reason to be pleased with himself. His son Hidetada was Shogun, supreme warlord of Japan, but in truth it was Ieyasu who ruled the country behind the scenes. Read more

Minamoto Yoshitsune shown riding up a slope to attack the Taira clan. The fighting between clans was ritualized and often called for prescribed combat between archers.


Japanese Mounted Archery

By Brian Todd Carey

In the eyes of the West, the Japanese samurai warrior has traditionally been associated with the long sword that bears his name. Read more