Moji castle

It was following his departure from Edo that, in 1612, Musashi visited Moji castle, on the northern tip of the southern island of Kyushu, some ten miles northwest of the port of Kokura. The lord of Moji castle, at the time, was Numata Nobumoto. 

It is not clear how Musashi and Nobumoto first met. What is certain that Musashi stayed at Moji castle and instructed Nobumoto’s retainers in his art of swordsmanship. The Numata kaki, the family records of the Numata clan, compiled in 1672 by on of Nobumoto’s descendants, describes how:

延元様門司に被成御座候時 或年宮本武蔵玄信豊前へ罷越 二刀兵法の師を仕候。

One year, at the time when master Nobumoto resided at Moji castle, Miyamoto Musashi Genshin visited Buzen and instructed his lordship in the Nitō school of swordsmanship.

Moji castle, incidentally, would also be the place where Musashi sought refuge when, in the wake of his famed duel with Sasaki Kojirō, he was being hunted down by the latter’s deshi, who were bent on revenge for their master’s death.

Though Moji castle was dismantled in 1892 to make room for a gun placement of the Imperial Japanese Army, a stone pillar still marks the place from where it guarded the Straits of Shimonoseki. 

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