Chivalry versus Bushido

JOHN THURSTON is back and eager to discuss Western Martial Arts, especially relating to its history.



Postby JOHN THURSTON » Thu Aug 14, 2008 7:23 pm

The Kaiten was basically a torpedo altered to carry a man who was not going to come back.

The Germans Experimented with a similar tactic, but at least the one man crew had a chance to ascape.

Both Programs were spectacular in their falire and neither even did as well as the Hunley.

Their is a book Called "Kaiten" but I cannot, as usual find my copy.

My daughter moved back home and moved all my books and I can't find anything, God Bless her.

Also, I posted on the Modget submarine not tremendously bigger than a Kaiten along with the controversial picture of a sub (midget) 'porpoising' to the west of Battleship Row.

For decades this picture was thought yo be that of an aerial torpdoe, but experts are now aruing that this "porpoising" was typicical of a Midget sub after firing one of its two torperdoes.

As noted. one midget sub as reported sunk by the Destroyer "Ward" (not credited) was found by divers, another was up on a beach and produced America's first prisoner of war------which is another story.

The shot taken by Ward by a gunner over open sights at 500 yards was incrediblem and when the Midget Sub was Finally found with a 5" hole at the base of its conning tower, the incredible was proved true.

I do not know, offhand, whether the sub was leaviving or entering the harbor.
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Postby f.Channell » Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:08 am

My great-great grandfather was patrolling on the USS Housatonic and USS Susquehanna blocking off the ports. He was sent home sick before it was sunk. A close call I'm sure. He was a steamfitter and I believe may have also helped build it in the Boston Naval Shipyard.
A lot of disease as well as bloodshed back then.

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Postby JOHN THURSTON » Sat Aug 16, 2008 4:47 am

Fred, was there any part of our history oneof your relearives was not involved in.

Just to exploit the obvius, a John Thurston is shown as one who died at the Alamo,

In any event the Book "Mayflower" asserts the 10% of or populattion descendended from mayflower people.

I am guessig that another 10% are descended for Mass Bay (John Thurston Settled In Sudbury in 1657.

But i digress.

One difference, that I feel in my gut is that Early Chivalry immediatelt descended fron waves of Horsemen that swept into the former Roman Empire starting in the late 4th Centurly.

Before that, many 'teutonic" and Gothic Tribes were alloewed to settle in the Empire.

Gothic Cavarly, as you wwill recall, were Flavius Aetius" allies at Chalons in 451.

Franks, Goths seem to be te major force as Karl deGrosse (Charlemagne)

was able to set up an Empire one the ashes of the Western Emire.

When he died he left each son a third of his Empire, setting the stage for the arguablly internicine troubles still not settled.

It is not my theory alone that the battle of France did not end until 1945 and it requiered unwonted interventions fron a spewling power in the "New World".

So, I think the Chevaliers were descendants of the idea of the Roman Equus' and those of the many Germanic Tribes who reshaped Europe.

They had no code , an a Bushido like code really never existed in the West.

For one thing, the early Chivarly of the West were simply horse men.

When the Merovingnian Empire Came apart, the law of the state went with it and it was replaced in the dark ages by dozens of feudal Kingdoms held together by personal oaths.

More attention has been paid to the istory of the Dark Ages as it played out in Britain.

Eventually, the Saxons non feidal and largely non horsed fighting force called House karls and backed by a militia called the "fyrd" gripped the area of Roman Britain,excepting Wales.

Hwever, things tooks a different turn when the descendents as seafaring raiders turned horseman crushed the Saxon Kingdom.

The Normans won partially because of their horsemen, many as portrayed in Cecillia Hollands the Firedrake-- just went along for the loot.

Their type of feudalism was iron clad and simple---and remember the imprisonmemnt of the Bruce's Child in an iron cage.

Sorry to be so diffuse.

Prior to the Saxon hegemony over former Roman Britain and the submergence of rather rich little cultures in Mercia, Anglia, East Saxony, Sussex, etc.

The integration, for example, of East Anglia was completed in 620 when the Kingdon was conquered by the West Saxons after previously being conquered by the Vikings (Danes mostly),

Things were chaotic to say the least.

The Mercians fell to the Vikings, then, probably out of self defense, they West Saxon annexed this former KIngdom in 919,

Saxons did not favor mounted fighting-so kniththood and Chivalry were only a gleam in God's eye in 919 as far as former Roman Britian Went.

Their is mush to discuss.

But a Bushido like Code for mounted warriors-even as far along as the 10th century, just was not in the cards.

At least not for another century at the least in former roman Briton, although the legend of Arthur does speak otherwise.

So-the thought was there-it just had not germinated.

Arthur defeated, perhaps usin cavalry lessons from the mainland, with his "Britain's.

"Arthur and the Anglo Saxon Wars" might shed some light on this period, as he and a force of mounted and non mounted romano Britain temporary put the Saxons on check at Mount Badon.

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Postby f.Channell » Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:45 pm

Hi John,

I'm quite sure lots of people reading this post also have relatives going quite far back in New England, I just figure it out.
And I don't have a relative that I've discovered yet from the Mayflower, but many that arrived shortly thereafter.
From King Phillips War on I can name a relative involved.
Many killed by natives, many abducted by French etc....
Working on my Scots heritage now,
Oldest relative so far was captured by Cromwells men at the Battle of Dunbar Scotland, sold into slavery and ended up a slave at the Saugus Iron Works in Massachusetts, transported on a slave ship Unity 12/1650.
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Postby JOHN THURSTON » Wed Aug 20, 2008 1:21 am

When one's name, like Hugh's, a descendant of the Surgeon Generalgeneral of plymouth colony. show up, it show how really really half of the country is.

My folk were Mass Bay and some relatives filtered down from the maritimes.

I would like to send videos, pics (in a complete change of subjuect) of aircraft for any who wants them.

A buxom computer is required.

The pilots a arguably the knights of the sky, but as to a chivalric core, the one one I know of was mostly from 1915-present, a pilot would not shoot another aviator after ejection.

There are numerous and egregious exceptions to this custom.
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Postby Shana Moore » Mon Sep 15, 2008 5:00 pm

Just had an interesting point brought up to me by a freind, and thought it might be interesting to post here for observations....

In feudal societies, martial arts were not open to everyone, at least not in early medieval times. Let me clarify, the use of the sword, lance, mace, etc. was something taught to landed nobility. Archery, often considered a more common weapon, was used by huntsman and lower ranks. If I remember correctly, any other martial training required money and time, which was in short supply for your average serf or lower class citizen in the cities. So, economically and perhaps legally (would need to research that part), martial arts were highly restricted. An effective population control method, that.....

If I understand correclty, basic martial arts may not have had the same restrictions in oriental countries? The impression I was given by my freind was that Eastern societies considered martial arts training a central part of thier cultural for all caste?....if there was such a caste system in thier countries....?...Can someone with more background than I comment?
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Postby hoshin » Sat Sep 20, 2008 11:21 pm

I would like to participate in this thread however I do get lost easily when it comes to medieval and western topics.
Shana ,
Martial training was not restricted from the lower class but like you said , only the affluent could afford the time and money to belong to a dojo or koryu. The common foot soldier could find himself on a campaign lasting months or years. While at home his duties would not allow him the luxury.

Money was below the Samurai. The merchant was a lower class then the Samurai and money was their domain. The Samurai would get what he needed on credit and the Samurai wife would pay the bill later. All debt had to be paid by the first of the new year.

Ritual suicide
While often over played it did happen. Hara Kiri is a vulgar term meaning “belly cut”
Seppuku is a common term for taking ones own life when disgraced. Junshi is taking ones own life to follow ones lord or to show loyalty and duty.

Daido Yuzan 16th century “

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Postby Halford » Tue Dec 23, 2008 5:34 pm

As a descendent of the Mayflower group and also with some French and Indian connections, as tenuous as such is apt to be, I find the things mentioned here interesting and will comment later on about all this. Actually, the percentage of people descended overall from the Pilgrims is much higher than here as some recent studies, if I am not mistaken,will show. The Pilgrims spent some time in Holland until they had to leave there due to some political pressures,etc. from the English and Spanish,etc. Aside from this, comparisons of so-called Bushido and Chivalry encounter a good deal of 'mythology',fantasy, and misconceptions which need to be examined from an historical perspective and this takes much time to do so. Nearly all the old ages, periods, and similar concepts, like 'paradise' and 'edens', seem to many not only lost but also better than what reality shows them to have actually been. This is a topic I will defer for a while as that, too, is complex. Emotions tend to run high when dealing with such things as 'courtly love' and the like. The Troubadors were supposedly influenced, by the way, by Sufis and Islamic peoples. Have to dash. Keep up the good work. Halford PS: I suggest that some of you visit the website of the Hawaii Karate Museum and also the judo forum,which is, I believe, a British affair.
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Postby Halford » Tue Oct 06, 2009 3:52 pm

There is a new book out that I have glanced at about Kamikazi but I can't recall the author,but some young men were told by their families to die honorably and there is one tale of a survivor who was disowned by his family for failing to die 'honourably'. I have created a blog among others entitled BUSHIDO BULLSHIT at
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