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Kenjutsu Workshop

October 8, 2022 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Charlie Williams

Kenjutsu is the umbrella term for all (koryū) schools of Japanese swordsmanship, in particular those that predate the Meiji Restoration. The modern styles of kendo and iaido that were established in the 20th century included the modern form of kenjutsu in their curriculum, also. Kenjutsu, which originated with the samurai class of feudal Japan, means “the method, technique or the art of the sword.” This is opposed to kendo, which means “the way of the sword”.

Likely the first iron swords were manufactured in Japan in the fourth century, based on technology imported from China via the Korean peninsula.  While swords clearly played an important cultural and religious role in ancient Japan,  in the Heian period the globally recognized curved Japanese sword (the katana) was developed and swords became important weapons and symbolic items.

One of the more common training weapons is the wooden sword (bokuto or bokken). Many schools make use of very specifically designed bokuto, altering its shape, weight, and length according to the style’s specifications. For example, bokuto used within Yagyū Shinkage-ryū are relatively thin and without a handguard. Kashima Shin-ryū practitioners use a thicker than average bokuto with no curvature and with a rather large hilt. Some schools practice with fukuro shinai (a bamboo sword covered with leather or cloth).

The school participating in the Kenjutsu demonstration and workshop is the Jinmukan Japanese Sword School, Charlie Williams.


October 8, 2022
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
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