Kusanku in the Oshima Hikki

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This is a kind of follow up post to another post that I did last year regarding the Oshima Hikki.

So what exactly was said in the Oshima Hikki about Kusanku?  The kanji for this is located on page 45 of the Oshima Hikki on the far left hand column and the first 2 lines on the right hand side of page 46, it is a total of about 5 lines.  For reference use: This link from the University of the Ryukyus

The text reads:

一年、組合術(良熙謂う武備志載する所の拳法と聞ゆ)の上手とて本唐より公相君(是は称美の号なる由なり)弟子数々つれ渡れり、其の技、左右の手の内、何分一つは乳の方を押さえ、片手にて技をなし、扠足をよく効かする術也。甚だ痩た弱々とした人でありしが、大力の者、無理に取り付きたるを其儘倒したる事など有し也。

So what exactly does this mean?

A fast translation is "One year, a man called Kusanku who was from China and was a practictioner of Kumiaijutsu (Chinese wrestling or possibly Southern Chinese Kenpo)  performed a public demonstration where his students attempted to overpower him.  With little effort the man used hand and foot techniques to overpower his much larger opponents."

People have read into this over and over again trying to get any type of information out.  Sadly in the context of the Oshima Hikki this doesn't specify if the demonstration was on Okinawa, China, or even mainland Japan.  There also is no time reference, or a list of any of his students.

This is a good example of how things can go south really fast in translation.  Anyone who is serious about researching karate should really learn how to read Japanese, never trust anyone's translation.  In a lot of cases things are translated so that their point can be proven, not exactly what is on the paper.

Gambatte Kudasai,

Scot