I was recently complaining to Richard about the lack of Samurai-related material on the Osprey blog and learned that among our small but intrepid staff there is no one who knows all that much about the Japanese warrior elite. You know how it is when you ask a question, you get appointed to head the committee. This morning I came across a little tidbit that I\'m sure every Ospreyista knows, but I was not aware of---guns were forbidden in Japan, which made swords the most powerful weapon in the land. The gem appeared in the April/May issue of History Magazine in an article called “A Heroic Epic of Japan: The 47 Ronin.”

More to come on this topic as I falteringly learn about Japanese military history.

P.S. I am traveling to Beijing, Shanghai and Xian next month and looking for recommendations for off-the-beaten path historical sites and museums. If any you have some, I\'d love to hear from you!