Okay, taking some suggestions I revised the other questions and have added
some true false as well. I am interested in all comments, especially
those berating me for not knowing what I am talking about, because really
I don't. I figure that I might actually learn something this way, though,
and I'll force myself to learn the right answers.
Anyway, for those who are interested, here are 20 true/false questions I
hope are easy (and correct!)
True or False
1. Prince Shotoku is well-known for his acceptance of the Christian faith.
2. Maeda Toshiie was famous for his use of shinobi.
3. Uesugi Kenshin led a revolt against his own brother and became the
ruler of Echigo.
4. Takeda Shingen had a woman warrior as a mistress.
5. The naginata was only used by women.
6. The katana was developed because of the great effectiveness of the
nodachi in battle.
7. Buddhist monastaries would often fight with one another, using their
warrior monk disciples.
8. Japan is a patriarchal society so there has never been a ruling
9. The Japanese used the matchlock rifle to great effectiveness during the
Warring States Period.
10. Christianity was slow to catch on in Japan, since the samurai already
had a firm belief in Zen Buddhism.
11. Tokugawa Ieyasu was a great friend to the Buddhist Ikkyou sect.
12. The Tale of Genji was written by a man about his own exploits.
13. The 'kamikaze,' or 'divine wind,' saved Japan from Mongol invasion.
14. Arrows were often fired before a battle to attract the attention of
15. Hakama were only worn in the winter, when it was cold.
16. The modern karate gi is nearly unchanged from the clothes of the
17. The Tokugawa Shogunate froze all the traditions of the Sengoku Jidai,
so there was very little change between 1600 and the 19th Century.
18. After unifying Japan, Toyotomi attempted to conquer China.
19. The western ideas, concepts, and objects brought by the Portugese were
spurned by most Japanese lords.
20. Japan's feeling of superiority kept the Japanese people from exploring
1. False. Christianity did not truly make headway in Japan until the
2. True. Maeda Toshiie controlled what is now the Ishikawa province and
was well known for his use of shinobi, known to many today as ninja.
3. True. Kenshin swore that if he defeated his brother he would do all
he could to protect Echigo.
*4. True. Takeda Shingen is believed to have had a mistress, named Yae,
who led a band of other warrior women to battle.
5. False. The naginata was used by many warriors on the field of battle.
It only became a 'woman's weapon' in the sense that women were encouraged
to learn the naginata to defend themselves in case of an attack.
6. False. The nodachi, though an impressive weapon, was not easily used.
It lacked some of the usefulness of European great sword and was often
relegated to a specialty status. When the Mongols invaded Japan, the
usefulness of a shorter sword for close combat became evident. The curve
is believed to have made it a better weapon from horseback.
7. True. Warrior monks would often fight each other in the streets of
the capital, or use their military and religious power to influence
politics. This was especially true during the Gempei wars.
8. False. There have been quite a few empresses who have held the reigns
of power by their own right.
9. True. There were also several innovations made to the matchlock rifle
and rifle combat. First, the Japanese eventually designed a wax-paper
cover for the rifle to keep the powder dry. Second, they devised a method
of tying a string to the rifle, which would be raised and aimed. The
string would be tied off at a point so that even in the dark the rifle
could be pointed at a given point.
10. False. Christianity caught on quickly in Japan and found many
converts. The rate at which it gained popularity was alarming to many,
who viewed Christianity as a threat.
11. False. Tokugawa Ieyasu spent a great deal of time putting down Ikkyou
12. False. The author of the Tale of Genji was a woman: Murasaki-shikibu
13. True. The Japanese were unprepared for the Mongols, but a typhoon
arose and swamped most of the Mongol's ships.
14. True. Special arrowheads were made that would create a whistling
sound as they flew. It was hoped that the gods would be attracted to the
sound and thus notice the exploits that happened on the field that day.
15. False. Hakama were worn by the kuge and buke year-round; to not wear
hakama would be like not wearing pants in more modern society. Peasants
and commoners had trousers more similar to western dress, and would often
be found working in the heat in nothing more than a fundoshi--a loincloth.
16. False. The karate gi, like karate, is relatively modern. It is
nothing like pre-17th Century Japanese clothing.
17. False. There was a tremendous amount of change in clothing, social
order, and other areas of Japan during the Tokugawa Shogunate. However,
much of the change was early and became codified by the Tokugawa shoguns.
18. True. Toyotomi sent an army to Korea with the purpose of eventually
challenging China. China eventually met the army and pushed the Japanese
back. The damage to Korea was devestating and is the source of much of
the tension between Japan and Korea into modern times.
19. False. Many Japanese lords were fascinated by the technology the
Portugese brought with them, and sought to employ what they could.
Cannons and rifles were only two of the advances that were used to great
effectiveness. Western armour was also a fad among some lords.
20. False. Japanese have been shown to have traveled at least as far as
India before the arrival of the Portugese. A Japanese delegation was sent
to Rome when Christianity arrived.