Ninja vs. Samurai. If they fight, who wins?
During a “1-1” fight, the samurai can win easily. There are 4 reasons:
1- Samurai could possess 2 swords (katana and wakizashi). Ninja usually did not carry any swords. Some ninjas had only 1 short sword. The katana is the best sword in the world.
2-Samurai could own a horse. A samurai with a horse is more advantageous than a ninja without a horse.
3-Samurai are more experienced in combat fighting. Ninja specialized in espionage and covert fighting.
4- The samurai are not allowed to have any job except fighting. Ninja were farmers. Samurais are better prepared to fight.
5- While the ninja had certain sharp-edged weapons with chains (e.g. kusarigama, chigiriki) that can catch the sword of the samurai and then kill him with a strike, the ninja often did not carry these weapons as they had to be light to run fast.
In rugged terrain, or in the mountain area, the ninja group may win. The ninja has better survival skills as a small group. If it is a large-group fight, the samurai can easily win.
The ninja and the samurai usually collaborated. They did not fight against each other. However, on certain occasions, they fought against each other. Most of the time the samurai won. During the war of Tensho-Iga (1581), the ninja clans were devastated by the samurai (The forces of Oda Nobunaga). Even though the ninja were defeated, their guerilla fighting skills impressed the samurai. The samurai started using the ninja spies after 1581.
Differences between samurai and ninja
|Comparison of Samurai and Ninja||Samurai||Ninja|
|Nobility||Noble. Roots going back to the imperial family.||Not noble, laymen.|
|Main Job||Warrior during the Warring States period. The elite guardian during the peacetime.||
Farmer and occasionally spy for hire. Often served to daimyo on a part-time basis. Sometimes served as assassins, participated in hostage rescue operations or sabotaged main events by setting castles on fire.
|Social Hierarchy Status||High ranking. Ranked below daimyo. Allowed to own a katana, a horse. Has a last name (miyoji).||
Low ranking, ranked below ronin. Must bow to a samurai.
|Main Weapons||Two sharp swords (katana and wakizashi). Teppo rifle.||
Shuriken (ninja star), kunai knife, kusarigama (sickle and chain)
|Salary||Depends on the clan and ranking. Presumed to be 3 tons of rice per family in one year.||
Depends on the mission, not stable.
|Training||Given real sword at the age of 7, stays with a sword master for a few years.||
Mostly trained in the Iga and Koka regions in terms of running fast, breathing techniques, poison making, explosive making, guerilla fighting. Today Bujinkan Dojo continues the tradition of ninja training.
|Famous Historic Figure||Musashi Miyamoto||Hattori Hanzo|
|Residence||All over Japan||
Mostly in Iga and Koga regions (North of Kyoto).
Who is more powerful, the samurai or the ninja?
The samurai were considerably more powerful in terms of physical fighting and political influence, as that is their whole career. Ninjas are more suited for espionage and are usually common-folk.
Are ninjas better than samurai?
In rugged terrain, or in the mountain area, the ninjas may win as they have better survival skills as a small group. If it is a large-group fight, the samurai can easily win.
Did ninjas fight samurais?
The ninja and the samurai usually collaborated and did not fight against each other. However, on certain occasions when they fought against each other, the samurai would usually win.
Are shinobi samurai?
A shinobi is another term used for the ninja. It means “those who act in stealth.”
Why do the samurai hate ninjas?
Ninjas function in covert methods of espionage and waged irregular warfare that was deemed dishonorable by the samurai. However, the samurai started using the ninja spies after 1581.
Do ninjas exist in real life? Does Japan still have ninjas?
Ninjas did exist and were a profession in the 15th-17th centuries and were called shinobi. Today, there are ninjutsu schools and ninja experiences that teach martial arts and the history of ninjutsu, but not to the same extent as it was in the past.
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