The true story...

What is a ninja?


In this assignment, you will be charged with uncovering the truth regarding one of history's most intriguing mysteries.


The fact that in feudal Japan there existed something known as "ninja" or "shinobi" is generally accepted throughout the historical community... but there is a much larger discrepency when examining what a ninja actually was. In this assignment, you will examine genuine historical artifacts, primary sources, in an effort to gain a true understanding of what a ninja really was.

Exhibit A

BlueRat asked…

Did ninjas really exist? Apparently there’s no historical proof. Just because ninjas themselves didn’t leave evidence does not mean other proof wouldn’t exist. Couldn’t a daimyo write about it in his diary or something?


Hansel answered…

in ancient japan there were ninjas, and they often were hired as assasins, so that's why no one really proved them, and look on wikipedia, it'll give u proof


Chillbone answered...

Ninjas are straight up a lie, they never existed, period!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Japan did not even exist until 1922 when the Meiji Emperor from Edo united the Japanese Islands under the great shogun Tokugawa. How could ninjas be around if Japan wasn't even an island until 1905 when an earthquake/tsunami separated it from Korea?


SlowClap answered…

That's because they were too sneaky to be caught by historians.  Why wouldn't they exist? It makes sense that people could learn martial arts and use them for crime. I mean, it's not like they're mythological beings...they're just people.   I wasn't aware that there was no historical proof about them. Maybe historians just aren't looking in the right places.

Exhibit B: Koga-ryu Ninja House (restored - original from 1690)

Exhibit C: Utagawa Toyokuni woodcuts (early 1800s)

Exhibit D: Modern nonfiction book about ninjas (1991).

Exhibit E: Excerpt from the Bansenshukai (The Book of the Ninja), 1676.



Ninjutsu Questions and Answers


Question: When was the beginning of Ninjutsu?

Answer: It began as military strategy of emperor Fushigitei and by the time of Kotei it was fully employed. Since then, it has been transmitted to the following generations. Only conscientious people, with no evil intentions, can use it. Although we say that ninjutsu as a military affair has been in use since Fushigitei and Kotei, its records were hidden, and it only existed in substance. [However], its essence could be seen in various ancient records.

Exhibit F: Excerpt from the Buyo Benryaku (an ancient Japanese book), 1684.

“Ninja were those who lurked in their own and other provinces. Certain among them knew secret things and slipped into secure enemy castles…”


Buyo Benryaku, Japanese book from 1684

Exhibit G: Ninja artifacts

Various shuriken on display
Gappa travel cape