Katayama Hisayasu (片山久安)

Hisayasu KATAYAMA (1574 - 1650) was a great swordsman during the Azuchi-momoyama period and early Edo period. He was a founder of the Katayama-Hoki school. He was generally known as Katayama-Hoki no kami (provincial governor). He ranked as Iai (the Japanese martial art of using the Japanese sword, Iaido) master with Jinsuke HAYASHIZAKI.

There is a theory that he was an apprentice of Jinsuke HAYASHIZAKI, however, according to the tradition of the Katayama-Hoki school, he received sword instructions from his uncle Shoan.
He had a revelation from the kanji '貫' that means sticking to your principle at the Atago jinja Shrine in Kyoto City, he then founded his school. (The tradition of Katayama-Hoki school didn't mention anything about Jinsuke HAYASHIZAKI..)
Also it is said that Hisayasu was related to Hisamori TAKEUCHI who was a founder of Takeuchi school. Hisayasu KATAYAMA received instructions of Kumiuchi (Japanese traditional self-defense martial art, jujutsu) from Hisamori TAKEUCHI and gave Hisamori TAKEUCHI instructions in Iai.

He was invited by Hidetsugu TOYOTOMI to teach martial arts and then he was said to confer Jugoinoge (Junior Fifth Rank, Lower Grade) and was appointed as Hoki no kami (Provincial Governor of Hoki) in 1610 because of the martial art performance he held called 'Isonami' in front of Emperor Goyozei. However, there is no proof or document confirming this event.

He moved to Aki Province during the Genwa period and many retainers of the Asano clan, the lord of the Hiroshima Domain, became disciples of his school. Then he moved to Suo Province (now Iwakuni City) as a guest of Hiromasa KIKKAWA who was the lord of the Iwakuni Domain and died there.

His son Hisakatsu KATAYAMA founded the Katayama-Shindo school and another son Hisataka KATAYAMA took over the Katayama-Hoki school. Hisataka served for the Kikkawa clan and the Katayama family had served for the Iwakuni Domain as one of the sword master families until abolition of feudal domains.

[Original Japanese]