Samurai Armies of the Late Sengoku Period - Volume II

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The elegant, multi-storey main towers of Japanese castles, surrounded by massive fortifications, are widely known as symbols of samurai rule. However, the first of these tenshukaku were built only at the very end of the Sengoku period. Most fortifications were built of wood with earthen ramparts and ditches exploiting the natural environment.

The second volume of this series details these constructions as well as the fortifications that were affected by major sieges: Fushimi, Tanabe, Otsu and Ueda in 1600, and Osaka in 1614/15. The author explains the sophisticated siege techniques and countermeasures employed by samurai armies of the period, and the Japanese artillery of the time.

A second focus is on the complex heraldry of leading as well as lesser known samurai families of the Sengoku period, illustrated by many colourful examples.

The third part offers an introduction to the world of traditional Japanese textile patterns and colours, their use, methods of manufacture in the pre-industrial age, and their unique symbolism in the context of samurai history.

  • Paperback
  • more than 250 illustrations, including 12 computer graphics by Rolf Fuhrmann and Mario Sitek, 7 full-page and 9 double-page drawings by Sascha Lunyakov
  • English text written and translated by Till Weber
  • 112 pages


  • Castles, Forts and Fortifications
    An Eye Witness Report
    Fortifications Built of Wood and Earth
    Castles Built of Stone, Wood and Earth
    Elements of Japanese Fortification Architecture
  • Sieges, Siege Equipment and Artillery
    Sieges: Four Case Studies from the Year 1600
    Siege Technology and Engines
    Samurai and Artillery
  • Heraldry, Banners, and Battle Standards – Forms & Functions
    Kamon, the Japanese Coat of Arms
    Large Rectangular Banners – Nobori no hata
    Back Flags – Sashimono
    Other Forms and Functions of Flags
    Maritime Heraldry
    Heraldic and Other Military Unit Distinctions
  • Samurai Clothing, Colours and Textile Patterns
    Development of Clothing – Kimono and Noragi
    A Garment fit for a Warrior – the Jimbaori
    Social Status, Clothes and Choice of Colours
    Colour Combinations
    Traditional Japanese Clothing Colours and their Applications
    Textile Patterns
  • Bibliography

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