The History of the Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu
The Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu, a school of martial arts, was founded by Hozoin
Kakuzenbo Hoin In-ei (-1607), a Buddhist monk of
the Kofukuji Temple in Nara, Japan.
He adored martial arts and trained in the arts of swordsmanship.
At the same time, coached and mentored by Daizendayu Moritada,
a grand master of the spear, he honed his skill of the Spear.
It is said that one evening, on seeing the reflection of the crescent moon
shining on Sarusawa pond, he was inspired to create a spear with a cross-shaped
spearhead, its effective use in fighting. And he founded the Hozoin-Ryu
Sojutsu School of Spear Exercise.
Later, the teachings Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu were passed down to Nakamura
Naomasa and then Takada Matabee Yoshitsugu. The three best disciples of
Takada went to Edo, the present day Tokyo, to promote the Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu.
lts reputation spread nationwide and the number of disciples increased.
The martial arts of the Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu was inherited from generation
to generation, creating various new techniques. At the end of Tokugawa
shogunate feudal government, around the middle of the 19th Century, there
were many masters from the Hozoin-ryu Sojutsu at the martial arts training
center of the Shogunate.
Eventually in 1976 the art of the spear of Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu returned
to Nara. In 1991 Kagita Chubee was appointed the 20th grand master and
has been leading the Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu School until today.
The spear of the Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu is characterized by its cross-shaped
spearhead. It is used to stick, to twist down, to cut down, to beat down,
to slide.....etc. two dimensionally and three dimensionally. When invented,
the spear was regarded as an innovative weapon.
An ancient Japanese poem expresses the Spear of the Hozoin-Ryu Sojutsu:
"It can be a spear to stick.. It can be a pole sword to mow.
It can be a sickle to cut down.
It never fails to hit the target in any case."