Yamaoka Tesshū

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Late-Edo to Meiji period sword master and politician; born in Edo. Tesshū practiced under the master Chiba Shūsaku and later founded the Ittō Shōden Mutō-ryū school of swordsmanship. He also learned spear fighting (sōjutsu) under Yamaoka Seizan whose younger sister he eventually married, making him the official heir of Seizan as well. With his brother-in-law Takahashi Deishū he participated in a group to maintain public order in Edo. After the Meiji Restoration, Tesshū became a high-ranking government official in Shizuoka and Ibaraki Prefectures. He is often grouped with two other Meiji era politicians whose names ended on -shū (lit., “boat,” i.e. Katsu Kashū and Takahashi Deishū).


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