Samurai Quotes

Quotes tagged as "samurai" Showing 1-30 of 81
“You can always die. It's living that takes real courage." - Himura Kenshin”
Watsuki Nobuhiro

Laini Taylor
“Be a Samurai.
Because you just never know what's behind the freaking sky.”
Laini Taylor, Dreams of Gods & Monsters

“No matter how much you hate or how much you suffer, you can't bring the dead back to life”
Watsuki Nobuhiro

Matsuo Bashō
“Summer grasses,
All that remains
Of soldiers' dreams”

Yamamoto Tsunetomo
“Bushido is realized in the presence of death. This means choosing death whenever there is a choice between life and death. There is no other reasoning.”
Yamamoto Tsunetomo, Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

Eiji Yoshikawa
“Fighting isn't all there is to the Art of War. The men who think that way, and are satisfied to have food to eat and a place to sleep, are mere vagabonds. A serious student is much more concerned with training his mind and disciplining his spirit than with developing martial skills.”
Eiji Yoshikawa, Musashi

“New eras don't come about because of swords, they're created by the people who wield them. ”
Watsuki Nobuhiro

“A man who can't uphold his beliefs is pathetic dead or alive - Hajime Saito”
Watsuki Nobuhiro

Miyamoto Musashi
“I dreamt of worldly success once.”
Miyamoto Musashi

Yamamoto Tsunetomo
“In the Kamigata area, they have a sort of tiered lunchbox they use for a single day when flower viewing. Upon returning, they throw them away, trampling them underfoot. The end is important in all things.”
Yamamoto Tsunetomo, Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

“There is no greater solitude than that of the samurai unless it is that of the tiger in the jungle... Perhaps...”
Jean-Pierre Melville

Jim Jarmusch
“Ghost Dog: In the words of the ancients, one should make his decision within the space of seven breaths. It is a matter of being determined and having the spirit to break through to the other side. ”
Jim Jarmusch

Yamamoto Tsunetomo
“Rehearse your death every morning and night. Only when you constantly live as though already a corpse (jōjū shinimi) will you be able to find freedom in the martial Way, and fulfill your duties without fault throughout your life.”
Yamamoto Tsunetomo, Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

James Clavell
“Blackthorne, beside the gates, was still turmoiled by his boundless joy at her reprieve and he remembered how his own will had been stretched that night of his near-seppuku, when he had had to get up as a man and walk home as a man unsupported, and became samurai. And he watched her, despising the need for this courage, yet understanding it, even honoring it.”
James Clavell, Shōgun

“Takamasa Saegusa: 'Seigen, a mere member of the Toudouza, had the effrontery to sully the sacred dueling ground. For that reason, our lord had already decided to subject him to tu-uchi before long. Cut off his head immediately, and stick it on a pike!'

Gennosuke could hardly believe his ears. Such an insult to Irako Seigen was unwarranted. It was pride. For Gennosuke, Irako Seigen was pride itself.

Takamasa Saegusa: 'Fujiki Gennosuke! It is the way of the samurai to take the head of the defeated enemy on the battleground. Do not hesitate! If you are a samurai, you must carry out the duty of a samurai!'


Saegusa, Lord of Izu, continued shouting, but Gennosuke did not attend. That word 'samurai' alone reverberated through his body.

If one aims at the juncture between the base of the skull and the spine, decapitation is not that difficult, but Gennosuke could muster no more strength than a baby. He grew pale and trembled with the strain. He could only hack with his sword as if he were sawing wood. He felt nauseated, as if his own cells one after another were being annihilated. But this...

Lord Tokugawa Tadanaga: 'I approve.'

Takamasa Saegusa: 'Fujiki Gennosuke, for this splendid action you have received words of thanks from our lord. As a sign of his exceptional approval, you shall be given employment at Sunpu Castle. This great debt will by no means be forgotten. From this day forward you must offer your life to our lord!'

Prostrating himself, Gennosuke vomited.”
Takayuki Yamaguchi, シグルイ 15

Sandy Fussell
“The rat scuttles, the big cat creeps, the monkey dashes,
The bat glides, the white crane soars, the lizard darts,
And the owl hoots
In the middle of the night.”
Sandy Fussell, Owl Ninja

Yamamoto Tsunetomo
“The Way of the warrior (bushido) is to be found in dying.”
Yamamoto Tsunetomo, Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

David  Kirk
“Per otto anni ho vagato,
senza accorgermi dell'avvicendarsi delle stagioni.
Sono solo una foglia che appassisce, secca, muore,
eppure l'albero rimane: modello di vita.”
David Kirk, Child of Vengeance

David  Kirk
“Intorno a lui, le tranquille risaie riflettevano le stelle come lastre di ossidiana, e lui smaniava dalla voglia di sfoderare la spada e squarciarle; tagliare le stelle e tagliare il cielo e l'universo, solo perché sapeva che era in grado di farlo.”
David Kirk, Child of Vengeance

“It is the genius of life that demands of those who partake in it that they are not only the guardians of what was and is, but what will be.

—Thomas Nō Kannon, The Lady and the Samurai +”
douglas laurent, The lady and the samurai

Chris Bradford
“You told me once that being a samurai means “to serve”,’ said Jack. ‘That our duty is to our Emperor, our daimyo and our family. I didn’t understand at the time, but I now know what duty means. As samurai, we may have to kill, or be killed, if we want to protect those we serve and love.”
Chris Bradford, The Way of the Dragon

Mark J. Ravina
“С каждым пересказом самообладание Сайго становилось всё более полным, его монолог, обращенный к Бэппу, всё более длинным, а напряженность этой сцены всё более интенсивной. ... Невзирая на физиологию, традиция требовала, чтобы Сайго сел на раздробленное бедро и спокойно попросил Бэппу помочь ему умереть. Сайго был легендой, и японские СМИ решили тиражировать легенду, а не реального человека.”
Mark J. Ravina, The Last Samurai: The Life and Battles of Saigo Takamori

“Garden of the Dragons (The ’Halla, Vol. # 3)
Chapter Ten Excerpt (original editing)

Hachiman, surveys he the woe,
Wipes his brow, hate does flow.
A ruined life, heh, a loss of face,
He must have her now, to his disgrace
(Wed to Kari now, locked in time and place).

Battle over, moon still shines,
Lilies float soft in quiet time.
Scented visions and memories sear remains,
Of this terrible night of what was feigned.

Visuals lithe, of sword and blade,
Disguise the carnage and the pain.
Petals soft, they hide our gaze,
And cover the ground and its grave.

Flowers and moon in water light,
T'winkills the calm of a zen-burst night.
Now to life, the poem to seek repose,
And bury beneath those riddles she holds.

Nectars sweet, precious flowers,
A fragranted grave that allures and empowers.

Heart~beat, heart~beat, tells the way,
Of things long remembered and a far lost day.
How many memories, Kari knew,
That stain with age, being so few.

Samurai remembers - feels it as a man,
Clutches he his fist; wind in hand. . . .

". . .I have searched for you a very long time."
"Do not waste breath, kill. It is our way here."
"Not before I have my say, Corpse-eater."
"No wonder you took so long to find me."

"I have had a lot of time for thought," quietly he,
"- T'is a shame we could not agree."
"No more room for that," forcefully he snapped,
"You dishonored me twice and now, I will take one back."

"- Not enough? Hachi," said cordially she,
"If you are going to - cut the artery, please."
Tilt she her neck, exposed but her vein,
Samurai frowned, decidedly vain.

Looked he at his hands -
"They're already too bloody for today."

"Hummph. Such trite man'ers are atrocious.
For yourself you are much too engaged."

("Yet, a moment and it is done," thought he,
"But to gain it thus, a hollow travesty.
I must face her in all her strength,
The bladed Valkyrie, the one called great").

"I could kill you now, but I'd rather not,
This room is too unbecoming for the proper job."

"Charmed that you still think so highly of me."

"- Only then of your haunted beauty, I shall be free."

Feeling that weight, slowly dropped he his blade,
Time enough - rituals to cleanse and to pray.
Tossed his sword, pined her down -
Smooshed her face to the floor, Pinching it to a frown.
"Oh no, my little angel, you have it all wrong!
I mean only to kill you when you are strong.
Do not fear, I won't let anyone harm you in strife,
In the meantime, try not to flirt with your life.
Stay healthy - then we shall settle our love, unrequite."

A biting grin creased Samurai's scarved face,
"Let us fix it properly, according to my r'ace."
"Bushido," mouthed Kari, her voice empty as the word.
"And there will be no running away this time -
Rest assured."

Slowly withdrew he and left the room,
"Bastard," spit Kari, caustic of his doom.
The girl breathing vexiously, then calmly in the dark,
The door closed, silent, the light dribbling out.

Sounds below, drip mute in time,
Reality presses, she makes her fate thind.

And Skuld drinking, contemplates she her sibylline,
It was her hour now, the night of the wolverine.”
douglas laurent

“It is the genius of life that demands of those who partake in it that they are not only are guardians of what was and is, but what will be.

—Thomas Nō Kannon, The Lady and the Samurai +”
douglas laurent

“LaForche for his standing, understood Christina’s seditious intents, and for that, he monitored and hated the rude Vixen of Woe. Innumerable times they had quarresquabbled, sometimes very loudly, both during and after class. Christina’s wit, as fast as her blade, for the most part won the scathingly bitter, single-edged dialogues, much to the chagrin and embarrassment of LaForche. It was no big secret that trying to deal with his Anti-Mr. Spock logic was like trying to cross a baking salt-flat desert mid-summer with nothing to drink or eat except stale crackers and a big jar of out-dated defunct Peter Pan peanut butter, its original “crunch” now being only pasty sand mouth goo. She often asked herself how could you argue against no mind. It was an unassuming study in stupility to say the least.

—Christina Brickley, The Lady and the Samurai”
douglas laurent

“Know your times and its designs. Swordplay is exacting. Thrus, be shrewd with your jianqizhe “swordpraying.” A lot is needed.”
Douglas Laurent

“Valley of the Damned (# 1 The 'Halla)

As she sat teary, another story arose,
Young and full of vigor hewed with manymanymany
years of repose.
“Comrades” she brightened, “listen again to my tale,
Of courage and power, and how evil can never prevail.

—Valkyrie Kari, Saint of the Blade
Chapter 15, Valley of the Damned

Footnote: In one form or another, everybody hears but very few listen. It is a lost art. Like developing a taste for classical art, music or fine wine, listening is a skill, a ‘taste’ to develop, an “acquired sound.”

Valley of the Damned et al.”
douglas laurent

“I had a rather unfortunate tendency to tell the truth in a country where no one ever says what they mean. So now, I very accurately translate other people's lies.”
Edward Zwick

Takashi Matsuoka
“Loyalty was the most fundamental of samurai virtues. Without loyalty there was nothing. To Kawakami, who had looked at loyalty from every possible angle - examining loyalty was, after all, his occupation - it had become increasingly clear that the days of personal allegiance were coming to an end. Loyalty, in the future, must be to a cause, a principle, an idea, not a man or a clan.”
Takashi Matsuoka

Takashi Matsuoka
“The katana has been the weapon of the samurai since time immemorial. Consider the inner meaning.

Our blade is honed only on a single edge. Why? It is because with the dull edge against our flesh, the katana becomes our shield. This cannot happen with a two-edged sword, One day, in the midst of a melee, you may owe your life to the dull edge rather than the sharp one. Let this contrast remind you that attack and defense are one.”
Takashi Matsuoka, Cloud of Sparrows

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