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Musashi Miyamoto was a Japanese swordsman of legendary skill that lived during the Warring States era of Japan. He is said to have never lost a duel. His most famous duel was against rival swordsman Kojiro Sasaki on April 13, 1612 on the island of Funajima. Having left his sword behind, Miyamoto won the battle using a boat's oar he carved into a crude bokken, or wooden sword, to kill Sasaki.

Miyamoto is most famous for inventing the dual-wield sword stance, called 二天一 (ni ten ichi, literally "two heavens as one"). The stance uses the katana sword in the main hand and the shorter wakizashi in the off hand. Musashi was also a bushido philosopher, and his works include "The Book of Five Circles" and "Dokkodo", the former being a collection of works dedicated to the art of war and utilizing dual-wielding in battle, the latter being a set of precepts to be followed by the "ideal" samurai warrior. In modern day Japan, Musashi Miyamoto is recognized as a national hero, with many streets, town squares and hospitals named after him.

Depictions in Video Games

Musashi Miyamoto has appeared in a variety of games set in the Warring States era such as Samurai Warriors 2 and Sengoku Basara 2 Heroes. He has also served as an inspiration for characters such as the protagonist of Brave Fencer Musashi.

Trivia

In the original Japanese language version of the Pokemon anime series, Team Rocket member Jessie is named Musashi, while her partner ( James in the English language version) is named Kojiro.

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