Ashigaru 1467–1649 cover
Out of stock
Notify me by email when this item is available

For information on how we process your data, read our Privacy Policy


The ashigaru were the foot soldiers of old Japan. Although recruited first to swell an army's numbers and paid only by loot, the samurai began to realise their worth, particularly with arquebuses and spears, until well-trained ashigaru made up a vital part of any samurai army. This book tells the story of the ashigaru for the first time, their origins, recruitment training and use in various wars, such as the Gempei Wars of 1180-1185 and the Onin War of 1467-1477. Stephen Turnbull draws on previously untranslated Japanese sources and unpublished illustrations that show the range of ashigaru activity, from sailors to catapult artillery men as well as the disciplined ranks of warriors that they had become.

Table of Contents

The ashigaru: a historical survey
Ashigaru recruitment
Organisation and command
Campaign life of the ashigaru
The ashigaru's experience of battle
Museum collections
Bibliography and further reading
Chronology of the ashigaru
The plates

Product details

Published Mar 25 2001
Format Paperback
Edition 1st
Extent 64
ISBN 9781841761497
Imprint Osprey Publishing
Illustrations 70 black and white photographs and 10 original colour artworks
Dimensions 10 x 7 inches
Series Warrior
Short code WAR 29
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing

About the contributors


Stephen Turnbull

Stephen Turnbull is widely recognised as the world…


Howard Gerrard


Discover More

Visit our exclusive member's website to see artwork, maps, and more from this book.


Book Vote

Tell us what titles you would like to see published by Osprey, then vote for your favourites in our monthly book vote!

Related Titles

Sign up for Osprey membership for access to thousands of plane profiles, maps, battle scenes and more. Plus up to 30% off website purchases

Free US delivery on orders $35 or over