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Japanese warrior-aristocrats of medieval and early modern times.
Miyamoto Musashi and Saigo Takamori were great samurai.
by ♫ Highway to Hell ♫ June 20, 2011

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A social class of Japan formed in the 12th century during the conflict between the Taira and Minamoto families during the Heian Era. The elite of society, they were the only class allowed to wear a sword in public (the longer katana and the shorter wakizashi). They refer to themselves as "bushi" rather than "samurai". Each samurai is trained in the art of warfare, martial arts, the sword, or the spear as well as in the way of Bushido. Each region developed their own unique style of swordsmanship or kenjutsu (such as Yagyu Shinkage-ryu as opposed to Itto-ryu) . The samurai is a cultural symbol of the ideal traits of the Japanese people- loyalty, honor,a centered mind, and attention to detail. During times of peace (Tokugawa Shogunate, 1600s+)the samurai would become artisans, farmers, or idlers (ronins/vagabonds). Their decline came in the late 19th century, with the Westernization of Japan and the advancements in weaponry.
Samurai during the 19th century spent more time drinking sake than fighting.
by kshinomori June 29, 2004

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Feudal Japanese warriors, who followed Bushido, or the Way of the Warrior. Highly honorable fighters, they were skilled warriors and were fiercly loyal to their lords (Daimyo)
If shamed or ordered to, would commit seppuku.
by Maness October 30, 2003

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a fuedal warrior that followed a strict code of moral conduct.They were extremely loyal to their leaders wheter it be a warlord or the emperor of japan.They were masters of the art of swordplay.They would not dishonor themselves by using fire arms either.The word samurai means "to serve".
equivalent to the knights of europe
by micheal dunn May 12, 2004

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Underrated Suzuki jeeplet with a huge following, known for it's off-road capabilities and ease of service, not popular with the yuppie street-SUV crowd for it's lack of 'Useful' Off-road accessories, like tv screens, 6-place climate controls, or heated leather seats. Amazingly enough an extremely versitile machine... not for the pavement wannabes.
"I ripped the side open on my cadillac SUV, trying to fit in a Samurai-sized gap in the rocks."
by Shibari April 06, 2003

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a samurai is a person of independance and strength, who is able to stand alone, and only participates in collective endeavors for purposes of their own, rather than any feeling of compulsion. They don't feel pressured by society.
They must also be quite skilled and capable relative to the general population.
As well as observant, alert, individualistic, authoritative, mysterious, clever, capable of both courage and stealth, of both bluntness and finesse.
The aesthetic is important, and the samurai's general lifestyle, manner, and dress, must all be quite artful, elegant, and graceful.
Between the samurai and other elite individuals that the samurai has come into contact with/dealt with, there will be quickly struck and intense forms of both loyalties/alliances and enmities/personal wars. These relationships are complex and intricate and can shift dramatically at any time, although they can also be extremely longstanding.
"-Get so-and-so to come out tonight and do this or that.
-No, I can't change their mind, they're a samurai. They'll only come/do this or that if they decide to on their own. Or if their friend such-and-such tells them to."
by MsMegVan January 27, 2010

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The feudal, honorable warriors of Japan, equivalent to European knights. They were a class of nobles, highest in the system set by Tokugawa. They were honorable, powerful, and courageous fighters, quite different from ninja, who were the skilled assassins with little to no honor. I believe each side could take on the other, personaly.
The samurai were very brave warriors, 'nuff said. No flames about ninjas beating them!
by The Hand of God January 21, 2004

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