The Real Musashi I: The Bushu Denraiki

The Real Musashi I: The Bushu Denraiki

4.5 2
by William de Lange, Tachibana Minehira
     
 

Miyamoto Musashi (c. 1584-1645) is the most revered and celebrated swordsman in Japanese history; unfortunately, our modern portrait of this folk hero is derived mainly from popular books, comics, and film, with little heed paid to the early records by men who knew Musashi, practiced with Musashi, and went into battle with Musashi.

Spanning a period of more…  See more details below

Overview

Miyamoto Musashi (c. 1584-1645) is the most revered and celebrated swordsman in Japanese history; unfortunately, our modern portrait of this folk hero is derived mainly from popular books, comics, and film, with little heed paid to the early records by men who knew Musashi, practiced with Musashi, and went into battle with Musashi.

Spanning a period of more than a decade, the author set out to translate all surviving records on Musashi. The result is a body of text comprising some 150,000 words, mostly written during Japan's feudal era. They range from original accounts of duels, battles, and sieges, local histories and topographies, down to personal correspondence, clan records, family lineages, and roll calls. The fruit of that labor of love, the groundbreaking three-part The Real Musashi series makes available to the English reader virtually all of the extant early historical material relevant to the life of this enigmatic and solitary swordsman. All texts are accompanied by extensive notes that help to clarify and put them in perspective.

Part I, the Bushu denraiki, throws a new and refreshing light on many aspects of especially Musashi's early life--his troubled relations with his father, his first battle experience during Japan's period of unification, the sad death of his illegitimate child, and of course his legendary duel on Ganryu Island. For those interested in the sword culture of Japan, this true story of its most iconic figure is essential reading.

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon - J. Storey
Works like the Bushu Denraiki are obviously important biographical material, simply because they are the closest actual sources we have to Musashi himself. William de Lange deserves credit for translating this work and thus making it available. It shouldn't need saying that anyone interested in Japan's feudal warrior history should make these early sources on Musashi a part of their collection.
Kendo World - Jeff Broderick
This is one of those rare books on the martial arts that really deserves the title "Must-read". Not only does it shed much-needed light on the facts of Musashi's life, but it brings us that much closer to getting a picture of the man behind the myth...it almost feels as if a new book of the Bible were only now being translated from the ancient Greek and published in 2010.
Iaido Journal, April 2010 - Kim Taylor
I recommend that any student of Musashi read this book.
Amazon UK - Dr. A Sahal
A brilliant book, brilliantly translated and annotated (meaning explained rather than pictures!) and a must for the bookshelf of every Japanese swordsman and Musashi enthusiast. I unreservedly recommend this book.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940015598834
Publisher:
Floating World Editions, Limited
Publication date:
10/12/2012
Series:
The Real Musashi: Origins of a Legend , #1
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
246 KB

Meet the Author

William de Lange studied Japanese language and culture at the University of Leiden and at Waseda University in Japan. He is active as a translator and interpreter, and is a practitioner of the Shinkage school of swordsmanship. He is the author of A Dictionary of Japanese Idioms, Pars Japonica: The First Dutch Expedition to Reach the Shores of Japan, and the acclaimed three-volume history Famous Japanese Swordsmen.

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