Hagakure: The Code of the Samurai


A fledgling samurai humbly requests to be taught the ways of the samurai by Yamamoto-sensei, the famed author of "Hagakure," a book of samurai deeds that has been acclaimed throughout the land. Yamamoto takes on the education of the eager young samurai, and so begins a series of tales reminiscent of "The Arabian Nights," with deeds both admirable and atrocious, but each one a lesson in the convoluted way of the samurai.

The way of the samurai is not an easy road to travel, and aspiring samurai are often confounded by the ins and outs of the profession. Confronting just such a problem, young Tsuramoto Tashiro seeks the advice of the famous Yamamoto Tsunetomo, the retired-samurai-turned-Zen-monk who wrote the renowned "Hagakure." The old samurai master grants the young man's request, and so begins a unique education.

At each sitting, Tashiro listens in rapt attention as his teacher relates tales of samurai past. With brutal, unrelenting samurai justice, wrongs are righted and judgment is passed. With each incident, the young novice learns what it means to be a samurai. Learns what courage and right thought are. Learns the harsh realities and subtle wisdom of his age.

This is the first English-language manga version of "Hagakure," the 18th-century samurai classic translated into English by William Scott Wilson, who has written a special Afterword for this edition.

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Not only have I read the book, but I own a copy. Very excellent read.

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Why did you cry? I read one version of another/same Hagakure book in English. There seemed to be alot of tales about the ritual of cutting ones stomach (hara-kiri). And part of it involved sending a formal letter to your best friend to do the honor of cutting off one's head after the first ritual was completed. And then the friend wrote back that he would accept the honor....Is this type of thing what made you cry?

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Milking every yen they can from this nonsense.

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Perhaps the fey generation of girly-boys who can be found all over Japan can learn something from this example!!

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Meh. The book was written by an hereditary samurai in a fairly peaceful era grousing about how the lack of good opportunities to go out and lop off a few heads was gonna leave the family's most valued heirloom with a rusted blade.

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