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Auxiliary armours of Japan

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Title: Auxiliary armours of Japan  
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Subject: Kusari (Japanese mail armour), Hata-jirushi, Kubi bukuro, Kusari-fundo, Kyoketsu-shoge
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Auxiliary armours of Japan

Edo period print of a samurai putting on a wakibiki.

Auxiliary Japanese armours are optional armour items worn by the samurai class of feudal Japan in addition to the traditional six armour components.

Description

The six major articles or components of Japanese armour (hei-no-rokugu, roku gu, or roku gusoku) are the dou or dō (chest armour), kabuto (helmet), mengu (facial armour), kote (armoured sleeves), sune-ate (shin armour), and the hai-date (thigh armour).[1][2][3] Additional armour protection was available for the neck, armpit, chest, waist and feet. These auxiliary armours covered areas of the body that were exposed by gaps in the regular armour items or were additional protection was required.

Wakibiki

Wakibiki are simple rectangles of cloth covered with kusari (chain armor), karuta (small rectangular or square plates), or kikko (hexagon plates), these iron or leather armours or a combination of them were sewn to the cloth backing. Wakibiki could also be made from one solid piece of iron or hardened leather.[4] The wakibiki had cords connected to them which allowed the wakibiki to hang from the shoulder, the wakibiki was then suspended over the exposed arm pit area. Wakibiki were worn inside the of the chest armour dou (dō) or on the outside depending on the type.[5][6]

Manju no wa

, ( also manjunowa or manju nowa ) are a combination of shoulder pads, collar and armpit guards in one that protected the upper chest area. Manju no wa were covered with different types of armour including kusari (chain armour), karuta (small square or rectangular armour plates), or kikko (hexagon plates), these iron or leather armours or a combination of them were sewn to a cloth backing. The armour could be exposed or hidden between a layer of cloth. When worn the manju no wa looked like a small tight fitting vest. Manju no wa have small wings that would pass under the arm pit area from the back and attach to the front of the manju no wa with a button, toggle or ties.[7][8][9]

Manchira

are a type of armoured vest covered with different types of armour including kusari (chain armour), karuta (small square or rectangular armour plates), or kikko (hexagon plates), these iron or leather armours or a combination of them were sewn to a cloth backing. The armour could be exposed or hidden between a layer of cloth. Manchira are usually larger than manju no wa and protected the chest area and sometimes the neck and arm pit. Some manchira could be worn over the chest armour dou (dō) .[10][11]

Tate-eri

are small padded pillow like pieces with a standing armoured collar that sits on the shoulder to protect from the weight of the chest armour (dou or dō) The standing collar would be lined with kikko (hexagon plates) armour to protect the neck.[12]

Kogake

are various types of armoured tabi foot coverings that could cover just the top of the foot or be worn as a shoe or slipper. Kogake could be covered with small iron plates or kusari (chain armour).

Nodowa and guruwa

Nodowa and guruwa are similar types of neck protection, the nodowa would be tied around the back of the neck and the guruwa wrapped completely around the neck.

See also

References

  1. ^ , Author Nick Evangelista, Publisher Greenwood Publishing Group, 1995, ISBN 0-313-27896-2, ISBN 978-0-313-27896-9P.27The encyclopedia of the sword
  2. ^ : (Chūkokatchū seisakuben)Author Kōzan Sakakibara, Publisher C. E. Tuttle, 1964The manufacture of armour and helmets in sixteenth century Japan
  3. ^ , Authors Oscar Ratti, Adele Westbrook, Publisher Tuttle Publishing, 1991, ISBN 0-8048-1684-0, ISBN 978-0-8048-1684-7 P.192Secrets of the samurai: a survey of the martial arts of feudal Japan
  4. ^ , Anthony J. Bryant, Angus McBride, Osprey Publishing, 1994 p.57Samurai 1550-1600
  5. ^ , Asiatic Society of Japan - 1881, P.227Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Japan
  6. ^ , Anthony J. Bryant, Angus McBride, Osprey Publishing, 1994 p.57Samurai 1550-1600
  7. ^ . George Cameron Stone p.436A glossary of the construction, decoration, and use of arms and armour in all countries and in all times: together with some closely related subjects
  8. ^ - Page 201 Oscar Ratti, Adele Westbrook - 1991Secrets of the samurai: a survey of the martial arts of feudal Japan
  9. ^ , Ian Bottomley, Anthony Hopson, Crescent Books, 1993 P.121Arms and armour of the samurai: the history of weaponry in ancient Japan
  10. ^ Ian Bottomley, Anthony Hopson, 1993, p.143Arms and Armor of the Samurai
  11. ^ H. Russell Robinson - 1967 p.228Oriental armour
  12. ^ , Crown Publishers, 1969 P.33Japanese arms & armor

External links

  • Examination and restoration of an antique Japanese manchira
  • Anthony Bryants web site.
  • Pattern from Anthony Bryants web site.
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