Category Archives: Unknown Ryukyu

Educational Modernization, Standard Language, Karate, and Dialect Cards

One of the crucial pillars of the Okinawa assimilation policy was educational modernization. Students needed to be trained in the standard language of Japan. Implementation began as early as 1880 when two new schools were established to serve as the … Continue reading

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A Reconstructed Ryūkyūan Tribute Journey to China

Only one country was allowed to travel to China once or twice a year–the Kingdom of Ryūkyū. Its tribute ships were built in Naha based on the construction of Fujian-style junks. The keel was made of solid pine and shaped … Continue reading

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Ryū’ei-ryū 劉衛流 (self-narrative)

Recently, the Motobu-ryū detected various contradictions in the personal histories of Karate styles told up to now in Okinawa, Japan, and elsewhere. In this connection, he touched one oral tradition – or maybe better self-narrative – of the style called Ryū’ei-ryū. By the … Continue reading

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If it looks like a duck…

Note: Motobu Naoki Sensei of the Motobu-ryū was so kind to share the articles by Murakami Katsumi and from “Gekkan Karatedo” used in here with me. He also was so kind to help with the translations. Thank you very much Motobu Naoki Sensei! … Continue reading

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Shimabukuro Tarō and his Teachers

In 1991, Murakami Katsumi (Murakami 1991: 190-91) published an article about the teachers of his teacher Shimabukuro Tarō. Motobu Naoki Sensei of the Motobu-ryū was so kind to share it with me. Thank you very much Motobu Naoki Sensei! The following is my translation of it. … Continue reading

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“Tomari-te Kata” handed down in the Gōhakukai

The February 2003 issue of “Gekkan Karatedō” magazine features an article about the Gōhakukai. There it is stated (page 46): “Nine Kata are handed down in Tomari-te!!!” The following is my translation of the text. So, what Kata are handed down … Continue reading

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Location of Higaonna Kanryō‘s House

Recently we had a discussion on Facebook about Higaonna Kanryō. During that discussion I noticed that I miscalculated the location of Higaonna Kanryō’s house in my Karate 1.0 (2013). There I concluded that Higaonna’s shop must have been situated in today’s Omoromachi … Continue reading

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Higaonna Kanryō (quick overview)

Higaonna Kanryō (1853–1915), referred to as the “ancestor who rejuvenated Naha-te“, is one of the representative Okinawan masters of Karate of the Meiji era. Personal history Early life Higaonna Kanryō was born on 1853-04-17 (Gregorian calendar) as the 4th son … Continue reading

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Tokuda Antei’s Memorandum

As can be seen in newspaper accounts, karate spread and developed as a compulsory subject of physical education. On January 25, 1911 (Meiji 44), the sole daily newspaper within Okinawa prefecture at the time published the following article: The Karate Convention of the Normal … Continue reading

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Like-a-Stick-of-Straw

There is the working hypothesis of a prototypical combative method of indigenous Ryūkyūan origin and design. It predated imported methods of kenpō and was handed down personally without interruption ever since. This combative method is generically described as “Tī.” The … Continue reading

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