I recently wrote a post about the 47 Ronin: http://tgace.com/2013/12/15/47-ronin/ In a nutshell. Some scholars believe tuch of the "Legend" as we know it now is based on Meiji Era propaganda vs "the truth". While I don't know if anyone has all of the facts behind the "Ako Incident". I find some of the discussion and criticism attributed to the Samurai of the day kind of interesting. While many people think that this was a classic example of “Bushido”, the Samurai of the day and even modern scholars of Japanese history are not so sure. One scholar succinctly puts the historic quandary like this: The even greater ambiguity lies in the motivation and action of the ronin. They justified the attack as a vendetta (katakiuchi) on behalf of their lord, but in no way did the case fit either the legal or the customary definition of katakiuchi. Kira, after all, was not their master’s murderer: on the contrary, Asano had tried to murder Kira. Nor was there any justification for avenging the death of one’s lord, only that of a family member: the ronin even had to call on a Confucian scholar to come up with a textual basis for their action. Legalities aside, what was the underlying spirit of their act? Was it indeed personal loyalty to their lord, as the mainstream of the Chûshingura tradition would have it? Or was it a protest against the bakufu’s lenient treatment of Kira for his involvement in the incident? Or was it a simple matter of personal honor to carry out their master’s unfinished task? Or, as one school of interpretation would have it, were they impoverished samurai desperate for a new job and trying to prove their credentials?