[sumo] Maeuri today - non-sumo now

MBtatton at aol.com MBtatton at aol.com
Mon Dec 8 20:19:37 EST 2008


> Wonder if the groups you menion tells their readers that the number 47 > is 
a> tad fictional?>About the kid who wasn't there, you mean?

there were 43 samurai involved there on the day and the rest were merely 
vassals. Of course the concept of 'samurai' and vassal is a fading one now but 
think Agincourt, numbers of dead and then look beyond the pages of wikipedia to 
see that no-one really knew or cared about the numbers of dead if not knights 
with titles and the like. Same through Crecy, all the French wars, into the War 
of the Roses.

The equality in recognition we now take for granted is something historians 
have begun to superimpose backwards when discussing numbers in earlier 
conflicts. When the fist news of Agincourt and the like reached London, the numbers of 
dead were extremely low as only the titled men were listed. This never really 
stopped / had itself recognised and addressed until mid-20th century in as 
far as reporting of those killed in war goes.

In one particular incident I have direct experience in, 26 men are listed as 
dying on wikipedia last time I looked - but 39 were killed that day. The 26 
were allies involved in a UN sanctioned mission. The other 13 locals (even 
though working together) not so.

One (samurai) had died on the way to Edo from their own fiefdom as was,  
another was sent away to advise (those back in the fiefdom) of what was going down 
and two of the men counted as being involved later were not permitted the 
'honor' lf disembowlment but rather had to suffer the dishonor of living and 
tending the graves of their masters (comrades) - as they were not samurai 
themselves. 

There are some wonderful ukiyo-e produced just 2 weeks after all this - 
originals still exisit in Tokyo - that depict the characters / personalities and 
backgrounds of each person involved - including the vassals IIRC. Forget the 
artist just now but available in book form in the library.

Did a throwaway a year or so ago on fun gaffes like this - the ''Welsh'' 
regiment going against the Zulus at Rorke's Drift and all that.


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