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Author Topic: a Knight vs a Samurai?  (Read 57871 times)
toli
Member

Posts: 313


« Reply #105 on: January 20, 2004, 01:29:01 PM »

Jake,

I actually agree with your overall agruement.  I still say Toshiro Mifune would win though...heh...I'm gonna have to re-watch all the Kurosawa movies...damn..

As a side thought, what about in a battle field context?  I think the tactical situation be imprortant and would follow Saracean-Frank model.  The Knights would win if they could correctly time and deliver the decisive charge, but the Samurai would have an advantage in missiles and possible better mobility...who knows...
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NT
Vanguard
Member

Posts: 71


« Reply #106 on: January 20, 2004, 01:38:16 PM »

My personal take on the outcome would be with Jake.

But now shove the pair in a desert, swamp, mountain, grassy plain.... Who wins now?

Could climate sway the fight?

Just trying to piss ya'll off now ;)

But to respong to Montag -

Maybe should have added 'study'.

The study of martial arts does not a science make simply because it involves sciences (i.e: physics and/or psychology) and I stand by that.

Additonaly. Aye, I would say that many of the disciplines you mentioned are strictly sciences as defined by empirical terms. Which is what I think is being argued here. Behavioural, cognitive, developmental phsychology all revolve around testing a hypotheses against variables we ourselves have set. And then drawing a conclusion depending on which way those results go.
A baby reacts 3 secs quicker to a human face at 3 months than at one. Thus, it can now recognise human features. An assumption. There is no ultimate method of measuring such changes. Who knows what the fuck is really going on?

Drugs is a scarily accurate of determining phsychological factors. How 100 mg of something will affect, say, reflexes, in comparison to 500 mg.



Take care

(And apologies for calling an end to this thread - it has become a beautiful thing)
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What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger - or a cripple.
Jake Norwood
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Posts: 2261


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« Reply #107 on: January 20, 2004, 01:39:09 PM »

If Japanese miltary stuff looked anything like the film "Heavan and Earth," then my money is on a western force of equal size, based on a very similar engagement in France in 732 (Poitiers, to be exact). Several simmilar engagements in the various crusades also point me in that direction. If you're talking about 1450, as I am above, then even more money goes on the west, who will have firearms, pikes, and crossbows.

Jake
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"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." -R.E. Howard The Tower of the Elephant
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Valamir
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Posts: 5574


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« Reply #108 on: January 20, 2004, 01:44:58 PM »

How powerful were the Japenese bows?  Given that they generally didn't face heavy metal armor were they designed/able to penetrate such?  

During the crusades Islamic archers were far more deadly to the horses then the knights and inflicted great injury on the knights only when heat caused the Europeans to abandoned the heaviest of their armors.  Japan being a more temperate climate wouldn't have that advantage, and by 1450 horse barding was much more wide spread.
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Half-Baked
Member

Posts: 20


« Reply #109 on: January 20, 2004, 02:41:09 PM »

Quote
Lastly, history points to the fact that western modes of warfare, which include the knight, were adopted by easterners who saw that they were more effective. The west has adopted very little from the east where warfare is concerned.


Jake, I agree with your assessment of Knight v. Samuri, but not the statement I have quoted. The western knightly style of shock cavalry was derived from the Persian Sassanid cataphracts of the 4th - 6th Centuries. It proved effective against the steppe invaders who raided the Iranian plateau. There is also gunpowder and various naval techniques that came from China across the steppe. These technologies allowed the west to project its power across globe from the 15th Century onwards.

Have a read of:

McNeill, William H., The Rise of the West: A History of Human Community, 1963

Very interesting book if you are interested in the movement of ideas between cultures.
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Salamander
Member

Posts: 450


« Reply #110 on: January 20, 2004, 02:57:40 PM »

Quote from: Jake Norwood
Hey all.

I am not, NOT going to lock this thread.

Jake


Good. I was worried there for awhile.
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"Don't fight your opponent's sword, fight your opponent. For as you fight my sword, I shall fight you. My sword shall be nicked, your body shall be peirced through and I shall have a new sword".
Salamander
Member

Posts: 450


« Reply #111 on: January 20, 2004, 03:13:49 PM »

Sadly Jake, I happen to agree with you, so I won't be the voice of dissent on this one.

In regards to a bow, regardless of whose it was, it has been proved that an arrow fired from anything that can be charged by man (loading and pulling back without external mechanical or chemical means) will most likely not breach a suit of harness. In fact I have just seen a picture of a suit of harness that has the dint from a musket ball on its breastplate.

Apparently a seige arbelest (1400lbs pull) or a windlass charged arbelest (1000 lbs pull) could breach a suit of harness, but they were hell on wheels to aim at a moving target.
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"Don't fight your opponent's sword, fight your opponent. For as you fight my sword, I shall fight you. My sword shall be nicked, your body shall be peirced through and I shall have a new sword".
toli
Member

Posts: 313


« Reply #112 on: January 20, 2004, 03:21:46 PM »

Quote from: Jake Norwood
then my money is on a western force of equal size, based on a very similar engagement in France in 732 (Poitiers, to be exact). Several simmilar engagements in the various crusades also point me in that direction.
Jake


Hattin 1187?...although I suppose Saladin probably had some heavy cavalry. ..

You could find numerous examples on either side of light horse vs heavy horse.  They each have certain tactical advantages.  I think in most cases when they lose the heavy cavalry defeat themselves through tactical misjudgements.  A great book on knightly warfare is Crusading Warfare.  I think the author is John Smail.  It gives a much more diciplined picture of Frankish knights than many other examinations.
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NT
Salamander
Member

Posts: 450


« Reply #113 on: January 20, 2004, 03:24:36 PM »

Quote from: toli
I think at some level we are arguing some of the same things.


Yes, yes we are, when are you going to admit I'm right!?! :D
 
Quote

I agree entirely that the development of fencing techniques probably (I only say probably because I don't know enough about it) followed and follows a scientific approach.  That was my point RE the the informal experiment = experience = testing of an idea.  


Okay, see, I told you I was right! ;)

Quote

My other point is that the application of those techniques is not necessarily a science even if the principles are based on scientically derived ideas.  Responding to a threat in a particular way because you have been drilled to do so is not science.  The reasoning for choosing that drill might be.  Likewise, the gas engine in my car was developed using science or at least a scientific approach, but driving it doesn't make me a petrochemical researcher.


True, exactly. But driving that car well is an art and science!

Quote

It may be nit-picking but I do think there is a difference between science and technique.  I could train a monkey (or undergraduate, but that might be harder) to do underwater visual transects to count reef fish...doesn't make him a scientist...    :)


Yeah, well, we probably wouldn't give either of them a sword, so...

Quote

Re the plane thing, the wright brothers were testsing ideas in the field.  A modern engineer using aerodynamic theory and software to test plane designs on a computer are similar.  There is a different state of knowledge but the approach of applying previous observations and information to a test is the same approachy with different technical levels of methodology.  Rationalizing that the heavens circle the earth because man is important is not science.  


This was my point entirely! Just because the cognizance of the parties changes does not determine one is science and one is not.

Quote

Within the realm of science, there are many peoply who would agrue that without a falsifyable hypothesis you are not doing science...


No comment.
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"Don't fight your opponent's sword, fight your opponent. For as you fight my sword, I shall fight you. My sword shall be nicked, your body shall be peirced through and I shall have a new sword".
toli
Member

Posts: 313


« Reply #114 on: January 20, 2004, 03:51:35 PM »

Quote from: Salamander
Quote from: toli
I think at some level we are arguing some of the same things.


Yes, yes we are, when are you going to admit I'm right!?! :D
 


So what you are saying is that I was right all along....
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NT
Drifter Bob
Member

Posts: 166


WWW
« Reply #115 on: January 20, 2004, 04:52:37 PM »

Quote from: toli
Quote from: Salamander

Have you ever picked up a real sword?

Ever swung one with intent?



I think the people who could best answer these types of questions are people with combat experience.  Unless you're actually in a fight where real injury or death is possible and your intent is to injure or kill your opponent, all the philosophy is just philosophy.  

That doesn't mean, of course, that the methodology taught in the training wasn't developed 'scientifically' through the testing of ideas...NT



Living most of my yound adulthood in some of the worst (9th Ward & 3rd Ward, and Irish Channel) and / or rowdiest (French Quarter) neighborhoods of New Orleans, I have had several experiences which, while not falling into the category of actual combat, since it's debatable whether either side intended to kill the other (I at least, did not), definately qualify as situations where "real injury or death" was possible.

One of these cases is due to the overzealous police a matter of public record, which you could probably find on the internet for about $10, given my name (Jeanry Chandler) the location (New Orleans, 3100 block of Magazine St) and the time (1992)

In the spring of 1992 I was attacked by three men, one of whom had a four foot stel pipe.  I defended myself with a wooden stake I found stuck in someones lawn that was part of an election sign.  I defended myself using techniques I had learned from doing WMA sparring for many years.  I defended myself well enough in fact that when the NOPD finally got there, I was arrested and charged with three counts of battery and one count of aggravated assault, all of which were later dropped by the DA after I had to spend two days in OPP, who determined that I was the victim of an "attempted mugging".  Actually, I don't think they planned to mug me, just beat me up real bad.

During this and a few other similar incidents, I can honestly say that WMA techniques had enabled me to emerge unscathed from very dangerous violent encounters with weapons.  Against a neophyte who has never fought with weapons, you can be fairly confident of being able to protect yourself with something approaching a weapon, even a very clumsy election sign.  

The odds change radically though when somene has even a little training.

JR
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"We can't all be Saints."

John Dillinger
Vanguard
Member

Posts: 71


« Reply #116 on: January 20, 2004, 04:57:08 PM »

Quote from: Vanguard
My personal take on the outcome would be with Jake.

But now shove the pair in a desert, swamp, mountain, grassy plain.... Who wins now?

Could climate sway the fight?

Just trying to piss ya'll off now ;)

But to respong to Montag -

Maybe should have added 'study'.

The study of martial arts does not a science make simply because it involves sciences (i.e: physics and/or psychology) and I stand by that.

Additonaly. Aye, I would say that many of the disciplines you mentioned are not strictly sciences as defined by empirical terms. Which is what I think is being argued here. Behavioural, cognitive, developmental phsychology all revolve around testing a hypotheses against variables we ourselves have set. And then drawing a conclusion depending on which way those results go.
A baby reacts 3 secs quicker to a human face at 3 months than at one. Thus, it can now recognise human features. An assumption. There is no ultimate method of measuring such changes. Who knows what the fuck is really going on?

Drugs is a scarily accurate of determining phsychological factors. How 100 mg of something will affect, say, reflexes, in comparison to 500 mg.



Take care

(And apologies for calling an end to this thread - it has become a beautiful thing)
Logged

What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger - or a cripple.
Vanguard
Member

Posts: 71


« Reply #117 on: January 20, 2004, 04:58:20 PM »

woops...

Was trying to edit. Trying to add a 'not'. Sorry.

I'll be quiet now.
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What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger - or a cripple.
Drifter Bob
Member

Posts: 166


WWW
« Reply #118 on: January 20, 2004, 05:04:51 PM »

Quote from: Jake Norwood
If Japanese miltary stuff looked anything like the film "Heavan and Earth," then my money is on a western force of equal size, based on a very similar engagement in France in 732 (Poitiers, to be exact). Several simmilar engagements in the various crusades also point me in that direction. If you're talking about 1450, as I am above, then even more money goes on the west, who will have firearms, pikes, and crossbows.

Jake
'


I too, love Toshiro Mfune.  He is the Japanese Clint Eastwood TIMES Charles Bronson to the power of Robert Mitchum.

I agree with Jake that the Knight would win over a Samurai in a one on one contest, though I'm not so sure about the guys physical size or his diet making any difference.   I think the key factors would be armor, reach, and the fact which Jake also mentions that the Knight would be more used to fighting opponents with a wide variety of different kit.

On the other hand, in a field army encounter, depending on the era I would go with the Japanese.  The Western forces would have the advantage of heavy cavalry, but based on what I have read of a typical Knightly army of the Medeival period, the Japanese would probably have vastly superior discipline, much better infantry, and much more effective archers / marksmen (even though the European Heavy Crossbow and Longbow are probably superior weapons on an individual basis, and they may have also had better armor piercing arrowheads).  

I think in general the knigthly armies of the European Medieval period displayed terrible tactical judgement more often than they did decent or even good judgement, which often more than made up for their truely awesome superiority in heavy cavalry over anyone else they faced.

If you put something better balanced together like say a well lead Swiss Infantry army with Halberds and well organized and suppported by at least some knights, then you may have a different story.  The military orders, Teutonic Knights, Hospitalers or Templars might also be better disciplined.

Overall it would also depend a lot on the terrain, much as battles against the mongols, the turks, the saracens and the moors did.  In a more open terrain, I bet the Japanese would win.  If there was more rough ground where the Knights had an opportunity to pin them somewhere, they might have a better chance.  The lack of discipline and in some cases, seemingly sanity, of the Knights, the lack of light cavalry or cavlary archers, the poor quality of the typical infantry and the frequent poor placement and organization of archers (with the exception of the English) would all be big disadvantages for the Western forces.

IMHO

JR
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"We can't all be Saints."

John Dillinger
Drifter Bob
Member

Posts: 166


WWW
« Reply #119 on: January 20, 2004, 05:09:03 PM »

Quote from: Jake Norwood
Hey all.

I am not, NOT going to lock this thread. Why? Something about the chaos here is cathartic. I don't want every thread to end up this way, but I think that a lot of venting has come out here, and some good points. Is it TROS related anymore? Not really, but what the hell.

So, if you think I should lock the thread, just stop reading it. Vote with your feet, so to speak.
Jake


I'm glad youre not closing it too, but maybe we could split it up into the three or four different arguments which seem to be taking place here:

1)The role of courage and fear in combat, and could knights conquer it

2)Were the Fecthtbuchs 'Scientific'

3)Is there a genuine Western Martial Arts tradition?

4) Could a knight beat a Samurai

5) Assuming WMA exists, is ARMA a valid organization for teaching it?



Plus an argument about the definition of science and the validity of psychology as a science, which might be off topic after all..

But I'm all for the chaos of this thread, I find it very interesting and informative too...

JR
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"We can't all be Saints."

John Dillinger
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