Hired Swords: The Rise of Private Warrior Power in Early Japan

By Karl F. Friday | Go to book overview

CONCLUSION: REASSESSING THE HEIAN WARRIOR

But above all, it is most conducive to the greatness of empire for a nation to profess the skill of arms as its principal glory and most honorable employ.

FRANCIS BACON

He shall turn soldier, and rather depend on the outside of his head than on the lining.

WILLIAM CONGREVE, LOVE FOR LOVE

Few themes in Japanese history are as fundamental or as compelling as the transition from the classical age to the medieval age. Classical Japan--the Heian and Nara periods--was politically ruled, economically controlled, and socially dominated by civil authority, the court nobility; medieval Japan was politically, economically, and socially the age of the samurai. Over the course of the past two and a half decades, historians have radically and dramatically revised their thinking on how

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Hired Swords: The Rise of Private Warrior Power in Early Japan
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Acknowledgments vii
  • Contents xi
  • Figures xiii
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 - The Emperor's Army 8
  • 2 - Peasants and Professionals 33
  • 3 - Warriors and Warbands 70
  • 4 - The Contract Constabulary 122
  • Conclusion: Reassessing the Heian Warrior 167
  • Notes 181
  • Glossary 219
  • Bibliography 227
  • Index 257
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