Shinden Fudo Ryu circa 1898 Question.

Discussion in 'Ninjutsu' started by Muawijhe, Nov 5, 2010.

  1. Muawijhe

    Muawijhe Green Belt

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    As I am at work and don't have any of my resources at hand, I was curious if someone could inform me as to who the soke of the Shinden Fudo Ryu was circa 1898, and if so, what are the chances he would have taught/shared any of the school with a Westerner?

    If memory serves (which it rarely does well these days), it would have been Takamatsu, and I couldn't forsee him teaching anyone not Japanese.
     
  2. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Well, Takamatsu was born in 1889, so, uh, no. Not him. I'd look more to Toda Shinryuken Masamitsu, who passed in 1909 according to some sources. Takamatsu would only have entered Toda's dojo a year or so earlier at that time (1898), and it's said that he didn't learn any techniques for the first year, although he achieved Menkyo Kaiden at age 13 in the Ryu (from memory).

    As to Takamatsu not teaching anyone not Japanese, I'm not really sure where that comes from. Hayes has been quoted as saying that if he had gone to Japan while Takamatsu was alive he wouldn't have been accepted... although that gives us issues with Terry Dobson, Danny Waxman, and of course Doron Navon all training before Steve did (while Takamatsu was alive). And Takamatsu taught in China during his travels as well, so unless he only taught Japanese people living in China, that idea doesn't hold a lot of water to me.

    I'm assuming you are refering to Barton-Wright here? He was the first acknowledged to bring Japanese Jujutsu to England, and founded his own system based on it (and other methods), refering to it as "Bartitsu", taken from "Barton" (Bart-), and a mistransliteration of Jujutsu (j-itsu). He was said to have trained in Shinden Fudo Ryu while in Japan. This art was then made most famous as the martial art of choice for Sherlock Holmes.
     
  3. ElfTengu

    ElfTengu Blue Belt

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    I know I have seen it written somewhere that Takamatsu sensei had many many foreign students, hundreds even, but what he was teaching them, who knows?

    Any why did he speak English if he was so Xenophobic? Was he active in WWII or in some other military capacity involvingSino/Anglo/Japanese politics after all?

    And why did he and Hatsumi Sensei advise foreigners such as film makers etc?

    In the movie, if it were made, he would be reluctant at first to accept the son of an occidental diplomat as a student, but would relent after perceving some potential in the child. Years later said child would emerge looking like Tom Cruise or Christian Bale, looking grim and serious and proceeding to bash up Japanese baddies who were offended by the hero's very existence.
     
  4. Kajowaraku

    Kajowaraku Green Belt

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    You are refering to the Brit William Barton-Wright, founder of Bartitsu, the legendary martial art featured in the stories of Sherlock Holmes (where it is called Baritsu). He learned SFR and adapted it with some western canefighting and boxing to make his own art. Yup, even then. :). Barton-Wright was a mining engineer in Japan in the 1890's he worked there for quite some time, so he had the time to learn shinden fudoryu. He effectively was the first westerner to do so. And yes, this is well documented. He returned to the UK in 1899 and immediatly started to teach what he had learned and his own additions.

    Edit: just noticed Chris beat me to it. Missed it at first pass. Ah well.
     
  5. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Is there any form of proof to this? [​IMG]
     
  6. Jon-Bhoy

    Jon-Bhoy Yellow Belt

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    I remember reading about this too, but I believe there are/were 3-4 different schools with the name Shinden Fudo ryu.
     
  7. Kajowaraku

    Kajowaraku Green Belt

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    Well, apart from his own articles and writings which clearly indicate the influence of at least some jujutsu we also see he invited Japanese Jujutsu instructors to old Blighty. Yukio Tani gave demonstrations in the uk, first with his brother, later with Raku Uyenishi. Tani was not SFR however, but Yoshin ryu, which is a bit confusing perhaps. Anyway, he fought some tournaments against Brittish boxers which he won, so he became quite the star. They were brought over by Barton Wright. Haven't got the time at this point to look for the concrete evidence, I'd need to check his articles on self defense against the kata of SFR to show what i mean, amongst other things.
     
  8. derobec

    derobec Orange Belt

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    Hi,

    Never known the claim to be questioned -he clearly had a reason for saying that he'd learned Shinden Fudo Ryu at a time long before the world had ever heard of the Xkans; However, George Kohler (across the water on ebudo) has made a sound arguement that it wasn't the Toda SFR but rather, a different one -from memory I think that he mentions three unrelated schools with the same name being extanct at that time.

    All Best wishes,
    William
     
  9. ElfTengu

    ElfTengu Blue Belt

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    Not at all strange when you consider that three Japanese-led organisations are teaching Takamatsuden SFR today!
     
  10. Muawijhe

    Muawijhe Green Belt

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    Yep, I had in mind Barton-Wright and Bartitsu. I was reading about it the other day and came across the reference to Shinden Fudo Ryu and it piqued my interest.

    No idea if it is the same SFR as found in the Takamatsuden arts, but it'd be interesting if it was. Also, apologies for my ignorance implying Takamatsu wouldn't teach to non-Japanese.

    Someone we might want to include in this conversation is MT's own Kirk Lawson, who from my understanding is well versed in Western Martial Arts (and perhaps even Bartitsu). He might be able to shed some more light on the subject.
     
  11. Devon

    Devon Orange Belt

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    I'm not Kirk, but I might be able to stand in for him on this subject.

    E.W. Barton-Wright noted that he had studied quite a range of fighting styles, including "boxing, wrestling, fencing, savate and the use of the stiletto with recognised masters" before he went to Japan. That's worth bearing in mind because people sometimes assume that he was just a jujutsu newb who then set up shop in England.

    He was resident in Japan for roughly three years (1895-mid 1898). According to the testimony of a Dutch colleague named Herman Ten Kate, who trained at the same jujutsu dojo in Kobe as did Barton-Wright, the style they studied was called Shinden Fudo Ryu and their teacher was named Terajima Kuniichiro, the latter being a student of Yata Onseisai. B-W also said that he'd taken some lessons from Jigoro Kano, presumably in Kodokan judo.

    The consensus appears to be that the SFR studied by Barton-Wright and Ten Kate was not the same as the SFR now associated with the Bujinkan lineage. This is further complicated by the fact that after ten years of intensive research, we still don't know which style was demonstrated in Barton-Wright's jujutsu articles for Pearson's Magazine in 1899; the only real clue is that the demo. partner shown in his photographs for that article probably wasn't Terajima Kuniichiro, in that it seems likely that ten Kate would have mentioned that in his own review of Barton-Wright's articles. Ten Kate did say that he recognised several of the waza shown in those articles as being part of, or variations of, SFR; however, they're also pretty basic, generic techniques that you'd expect to be part of many different ryu-ha.

    The jujutsu practiced at Barton-Wright's Bartitsu Club in London was evidently a combination of everything he, Tani, Uyenishi and (probably) two other Japanese instructors brought to the table while the Club was active. Bartitsu itself was basically a method of cross training between Japanese unarmed combat, English boxing, French kickboxing, generic wrestling and Pierre Vigny's stick fighting method, rather than being a "style" in its own right. The concept of "style" in the Japanese sense, strict adherence to a particular tradition, etc. wasnt really a part of the early British jujutsu scene and would rather have contradicted Barton-Wright's concept of Bartitsu as "self defence in all its forms".
     
  12. George Kohler

    George Kohler Green Belt

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    The name of the school that Barton-Wright studied in Kobe was Shinden Fudo-ryu kenpo, not associated with the other two SFR that were taught by Takamatsu Sensei.

    The only thing that connects this school with the other SFR is that this school finally ended up going to Ueno Takashi (a student of Takamatsu Sensei and Hatsumi Sensei's former teacher) from Kenwa Mabuni.

    Mabuni learned the art from Terajima Kuniichiro. BTW, Kuniichiro was most likely a pseudonym for Yata Noriyuki (Yata Onseisai Noriyaki's son).

    This kenpo school also had a jujutsu section. I'll list a few of the kata.

    jujutsu:
    足返 sokugaeshi
    鏡取 kagamidori
    胸取 munadori
    胸落 munaotoshi
    草摺 kusazuri
    投捨 nagesute
    錣返 shikorogaeshi

    kenpo:
    鷲羽返 washinohagaeshi
    柳風 ryufu
    乱菊 rangiku
    千人崩 senninkuzushi
    飛龍乱 hiryomidare
    鐡崩 tetsukuzushi
    獅子乱 shishimidare
    虎勢 kosei123
     

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