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Oriental Dictionary

Contributions by:

Eadric, Tim Martin, James Pickering, XvShenLonvX

If you have more that we've missed (I know that there are many), feel free to send them to us. Just write me at $email.



Abaniko - arnis striking technique using a stick and resembling a fan motion.

Age uke - Rising block. Also known as a high or upper block.

Ai - Blending, harmony, joining, or union. Also, to concentrate or focus. This term is most commonly associated with aikido, where one combines their energy with that of their opponents.

Aiki - United spirit. The spiritual principle of destroying an adversary's will to fight, or the physical act of dominating an adversary by harmonizing with his force and redirecting it.

Aikido - A martial art developed by Uyeshiba Morihei in the 1930's. Based on aikijutsu, aikido is considered a non-agressive art, using the opponents' energy against them.

Aikijutsu - "Technique of harmonious spirit." A branch of ancient Jujutsu from which aikido was developed.

Aite - "Opponent" or "partner." An adversary in a contest.

Aiuchi - "Mutual striking down or simultaneous point." A simultaneous score by both competitors in the sport aspects of Japanese martial arts.

Ankou - A death omen that comes to collect the souls of the dead.

Antei - "Balance," "stability," or "equilibrium."

Anyo - "Form." Dance-like techniques practiced in the Filipino art of arnis.

Ap Chagi - "Front kick." Also known as apcha busigi (front snap kick.)

Ap - Front.

Arbir - An indonesian Halberd weapon of pentjak-silat approximately five feet in length that features a shallow groove in the plane of the blade running the length of the shaft.

Arit - A sickle with pronounced crescent-blade patterns and a short handle, used in pentjak-silat.

Arnis - "Harness of the hand." A Filpino martial art, also known as eskrima and kali, centering around stick, blade and empty hand combat.

Ashi - Leg or foot.

Ashi Barai - Leg sweep. Also known as Ashi Harai.

Ashi Gatami - Leg lock.

Ashi Ate - "Foot strikes" or "leg strikes."

Ashi No Ura - Sole of the foot.

Ashi Sabaki - "Foot work" or "foot movement."

Ashi Waza - Foot techniques.

Atama - Head, or more specifically, top of the head.

Ate - Striking. To strike.

Atemi - Body striking.

Au - To encounter an opponent in any Japanese martial arts contest.


Badik - A Malayan dagger shaped like a butterfly whose straight blade bears one sharp edge.

Bagua (or Pakua) - The eight-sided figure from daoism. Considered to be an auspicious shape.

Bagua Zhang (or Pakua Chang) - "eight trigram palms" An internal for of Wushu/Kung Fu which employs circular stepping patterns and flowing, powerful palm strikes.

Bai He - "white crane" A well known style of Wushu/Kung Fu which imitates many of the movements of a crane.

Bajutsu - Japanese art of horsemanship. Also known as jobajutsu.

Bakechochin - In Japanese folklore, a ghost lantern carried by ghosts, or obake. Bakechochin means "haunted lantern." The lantern has eyes and a long tongue protruding from its mouth. It serves as a home for the ghosts of people who died with hate still in their hearts and are thus earthbound. If a person mistakenly lights one of these haunted lanterns, the hateful ghost will jump out and attack.

Bakemono - Kara-Tur cousins of the western goblin, alike in characteristics and habits. However, unlike the goblin, the bakemonos come in a variety of different shapes and sizes. No two creatures are alike. Some bakemono even have small, stunted wings!

Bal - Foot.

Balisong - A knife produced in the Phillipines. Also known as a "butterfly knife."

Bandesh - An ancient form of Indian fighting who principle tenant is to defeat an armed enemy without killing him.

Bando - A Burmese method of armed and unarmed combat composed of Karate-like striking a kicking, Judo-like throws, stick fighting, swordplay, and knife and spear fighting.

Banjang - A West Javanese style of gulat.

Banshay - A Burmese martial art, influenced by both Chinese and Indian sources, which embrases the use of such weapons as the sword, staff and spear.

Barbarians- Hunters, raiders, nomads. They live by instinct and natural talents, beyond the bounds of civilization.

Basho - Grand Sumo tournaments scheduled six times each year in Japan.

Baston - A wooden or rattan stick or cane of varying lengths used in the Filipino martial arts.

Bastonero - Students and practitioners of anis de mano.

Beladau - A Sumatran curved dagger with a convex cutting edge.

Belt - In most Okinawan, Japanese and Korean Martial arts practitioners wear a long colored cloth belt around their waist. They are generally long enough to be wrapped twice around the wearer's waist and then tied in a square knot, with 10 to 15 inches hanging from either side of the knot. Before the 20th century most belts were colorless, but since students were prohibited from washing their belts, belts grew steadily darker through years of accumulated sweat and soil. When the colored belt system of rank was incorporated, it was arranged so that the belt color became darker as the student advanced in rank, ending with the black belt, the highest level of proficiency. Belts vary according to style and type of martial art; in some schools there is only a small colored tip on the end of the belt to show rank. In each case the color represents a different established rank; for example, brown in Japanese and Okinawan Karate corresponds to red in Korean Tae Kwon Do. The most common colors used in martial arts are white, yellow, orange, blue, green, purple, brown and black.

If the belt, called Obi in Japenese, become undone during practice, martial atrs ettiquette is observed. The wearer turns around, facing away from his partner, and while kneeling on one knee reties his belt before again facing his partner. See also dan.

Bersilat - A Malaysian martial art embracing both empty-hand and weapons techniques.

Bi Qi - "seal the breath" Refers to many Qin Na techniques which seal off an opponent's airway (chokes and the like).

Binot - An ancient Indian form of weaponless fighting the employed wrestling techniques against both armed and unarmed assailants.

Bisento - A spear-like weapon with a blade resembling a scimitar affixed to its end. This weapon is extremely heavy, and was used to cut through armor and/or to cut down a horse in combat. The bisento was primarily used by the Ninja's of feudal Japan.

Black Belt - Color of the belt worn in the Japanese, Okinawan and Korean martial arts. It's wearer is generally recognized as an expert. In most styles there are 10 degrees of black belt, called dan (rank; degree), in which the latter five are honorary. In some styles, the recognized master, a 10th- degree black belt, will at his option wear a red belt. See also belt and dan.

Bo Stick - A wooden staff of hard wood, normally 6 to 7 feet in length. Its hard wood makes it difficult to cut or break. It is one of the five weapons systematized by the early Okinawan developers of te (hand), and originated with the poles used by farm people to balance heavy loads across the shoulders.

Bodhidharma - See Da Mo.

Bogu - Protective equipment of nonmetallic materials used in several styles of Japanese Karate, primarily for competitive sparring.

Bojutsu - An armed defense system centering around the use of the bo. It was developed from Japanese lance and spear techniques.

Bokken - A wooden sword used by the Japanese feudal warrior as a practice weapon. The bokken went on to become an effective battlefield weapon.

Bong - See Bo Stick.

Bu - "Military" or "warrior." A concept denoting the entire military dimension of feudal Japan.

Buddhism - A religious doctrine, one branch of which - the Chan school, or Zen - is closely connected to the practice of the martial arts.

Budo - Broad term encompassing the Japanese Do arts. Unlike fighting systems before the 20th century, the do were designed not necessarily to be used in warefare, but as a means of physical and spirital perfection. Budo requires continuous study of techniques. It demands continuous effort in creating the ideal psychological state; constant striving is required to remove any emotion obstructing correct judgement and reflexes of the body.

Budoka - Any follower of the budo doctrine belonging to such arts as aikido, Judo, Kendo and Karate.

Bugei - A generic term encompassing older Japanese martial arts which applies specifically to those principles used by the Samurai, or bushi, whose occupation was called bugei.

Bujin - A name for the martial arts expert. Translated as "military person" or "warrior person."

Bujutsu - "Military arts." A collective term for all the Japanese arts practiced by the Samurai.

Buke - Samurai. Translated as "person or military class."

Bunkai - "Analysis." The detailed study of martial arts techniques.

Bureaucracy - Its members in Shou Lung appointed based on the results of Imperial tests, controls the day to day operations of a vast empire spanning nearly two thousand miles and over thirty million people. It is the single most powerful force in Shou Lung, for although the Emperor's will is law, it is the actions of the bureaucracy that enforce the law and make it reality.

The system has broken down and become corrupt in T'u Lung, as testing has been replaced by hereditary or graft-like political appointments. The Civil Service Examination in Shou Lung insures only the best, brightest, and most loyal are chosen - it no longer serves that purpose in T'u Lung.

Buruburu - The "ghost of fear" in Japanese folklore. The buruburu lurks about in forests and graveyards in the form of a shaking old man or woman, sometimes one-eyed. The buruburu attaches itself to the back of its victim, causing chill to run up and down the spine. The victim then dies of fright.

Variations of this ghost are the zokuzokugami and okubyohgami, which posses their victims and cause them to be afraid to go anywhere.

Bushi - Professional soldiers from all ranks of society. Bushi are often masterless warriors, men without ties to a lord, temple, or monastery. They are commonly mercenaries, bandits, highwaymen, or wanderers, earning their money however they can. They can be found serving Samurai, protecting the court, or swelling the ranks of armies. A few may be Kensai who have fallen by the way. Most, however, are men of low birth who have chosen the way of the warrior to advance in the world.

Bushido - The code of the Samurai, which is hard and unrelenting. A Samurai's prime duty in life is to serve and obey his daimyo in all things. A Samurai must be willing to accept his death at any moment. There can be no failure for a Samurai serving his daimyo, for his only choices are to succeed or die in the attempt. If the Samurai accepts these choices, he cannot fail since death is not failure; it is the ultimate service a Samurai can render his daimyo.


Calligraphy - Kara-Tur languages do not use alphabets to compose words and words to compose sentences. The written Language is composed of pictographs or logograms, each character representing a single word or part of word. Thousands of characters are needed to write books. Great precision is needed to write clearly and accurately.

Thus an individual's style and artistic ability with the ink-brush is an important measure of his social worth in Kara-Tur. The first impression a stranger forms of an individual may well be based on how graceful and beautiful his calligraphy style is. Indeed, how well one writes can often be more important than what the writing actually says. Calligraphy is a vital skill for those aspiring to high position in Kara-Tur.

Camel Cart - Method of transporation found among some of the Hordelands natives, though most ride horse. The camel's hardiness is an asset when crossing the more arid areas of the region.

Capoeira - A Brazilian form of combat adapted by African slaves to fight oppression. Capoeira is dance-like, and many believe it was developed this way to be disguised as a dance to the slave owners.

Celestial Emperor - Ruling from his throne in the Center of All Heaven, the Celestial One charts the path of What Has Been and Will Be. There is only one Celestial Emperor, and he has ruled since the beginning of the Great Cycle. His appearance is that of that of a tall, aristocratic lord, dressed in shimmering robes of many colors, and wearing the high crown of the Emperors of Shou Lung. All in heaven report to him, including the Nine Immortals, the Lesser Immortals, and the dragons. His bureaucracy mirrors the perfect bureaucracy the Shou Lung strive to maintain.

Ch'an- The Chinese meditative sect of Mahayana Buddhism.

Ch'uan Fa - Chinese Boxing.

Cha Chuan - A northern Chinese form of Kung Fu developed from 14th to 17th century by Muslims of Sinkiang, Chinghai, and Kansu, in the west and south of China. In this system, practitioners fight from long range using high, long leaps to close the gap.

Chan Si Jing (or Chan Si Bong) - "Silk Reeling Practice" The practice, used in Taiji Quan and other styles, of developing power through a twisting motion of the entire body.

Charquit - Sundried jerky, a Hordeland way of presering meat.

Chashi - A Chinese exercise tool once made of iron and more recently of cement. These block-like objects, with handles, are used in one- and two-hand exercises to strengthen the the wrists and arms.

Chi - There are many defination of the mysterious chi, the biophysical energy said to be generated by respiratory rhythm. The concept was probably introduced by Mencius (Chinese Medicine, Pierre Huard and Ming Wong). Chi manifests itself in the five elements of the universe to give substance to the world, but flows through the elements in the form of a life energy which, if understood, can be controlled. Chi is everywhere. It can be seen in one's handwriting or calligraphy. The Chinese calligrapher strove to impart his control over chi through his brush to his writing. It might be thought of as a force which gives life, or which holds the moon in place, or which holds an atom to an electron. The concept of chi was fundamental to the philosophis of China (Taoism and Buddhism) and, therefore, to its martial arts. Internal systems of Kung Fu were very concerned with chi-kung (spirit manipulation); the external styles, in contrast, concentrated less on principles of chi-kung.

Chi Kung - A breathing exercise that cultivates chi and transmits it to all the bodily organs. Known in ancient China as "the method to repel illness and prolong life."

Chi sao - "Sticking hands." An exercise used in Wing Chun Kung Fu that develops sensitivity to the hands and arms.

Chiang - "Spear." One of the major Chinese weapons practiced in Wushu.

Chiburi - "Removing blood from the sword." In Iaido, a sharp downward stroke of the sword done in such a way as to shake off the blood accumulated from previous cutting actions.

Chien - A double-edged sword used in many styles of Kung Fu. Also known as the "gim" or "jyan."

Chikara - "Strength" or "power."

Chikuto - See Shinai.

Chimpan - The referee of a match. Also known as "shimban," "sinban," or "shimpan."

Chin Na - See Qin Na.

Ching - Both ching and chi (spirit, breath) are terms used by Taoist philosophical alchemists seeking immortality. Ching, in this context is the product of properly developed chi. It can also mean semen or, in another sense, and according to a different Chinese character, "muscular force." Sometimes they are contrasted as between the chi of the internal Kung Fu systems and the ching of the external styles, but more often ching is thought to be of a nature directly related to chi.

Ching Lo - Accupuncture's twelve meridians of the body on which they key points of treatment lie and which are associated with the vital organs.

Ching Shien - Spirit of vivacity in the Chinese martial arts.

Choi Li Fut - A southern style of Wushu/Kung Fu which is a synthesis of two other styles.

Chong Bong - See Bo Stick.

Choong Dan - "Middle" or "center." Region of the body from the neck to the waist, used to explain target areas.

Choong Sim - Center of gravity.

Cho Wa - In the Japanese martial arts, the harmonious mental and physical reaction while at practice.

Chuan - See Quan.

Chuan Fa - The major Chinese precursor of Karate. Most forms of 20th century Chuan Fa are said to be descendents of Ch'ueh Yuan's "170 hand and foot positions."

Chudan - See Choong Dan.

Chui - "Warning." Admonition by a referee in a match, short of actual penalty.

Chuken - The middle of the five players on a Kendo team.

Chung Do Kwan - "Blue wave school." A Korean form of empty hand fighting founded by Won Kook Lee in 1945.

Chung Ga - "Augment."

Chunin - "Middle person." The second of three Ninja's military ranks designating the leader of a group of Ninja's on assignment. Those led by chunin were the genin; those who obtained the assignment were the Jonin.

Chwa - Left or the left side.

Cliffs of Tanghai - A great black basalt cliff overlooking the Hungtse River near Taitun, in Shou Lung, the cliffs were inscribed by red lightning with the words of the Path of Heaven in year 440. The cliffs are considered to be the holiest place in all Shou Lung, as they are a living symbol of the existinance of the Celestial Emperor and the Celestial Heaven. The inscriptions, one meter high, are carved along the outer face of the cliff, and cannot be reached by any way short of flying.

Corno Breton - Also known as Cornish wrestling, this form of grappling is very similar to Japanese Judo. The most significant difference is that a wrestler is not permitted to go to the ground with an opponent, but must make the throw while standing.

Cuo Gu - "misplace bone" Refers to any Qin Na technique which dislocates or breaks a bone.


Da Lu (or Ta Lu) - "Big Roll Back" A two person training exercise similar in nature to push hands practice.

Daab - A Thai sword used in Krabii Krabong.

Daap Sawng Meu - A pair of swords held in each hand in Krabii Krabong.

Dachi - Stance.

Dai Kissaki - Enlarged point on a Japanese sword, a style more commonly found on swords from the 1700's.

Daisan - The completed drawing phase of Kyudo.

Daisho - Katana/Wakizashi set.

Daikyu - This is the largest type of bow found in Kara-Tur. In some ways, it is similar to the longbow. It is seven feet long and bent at the ends for greater power. Unlike most bows, the grip is not centered, being closer to the bottom. This allows the bow to be fired from horseback and kneeling positions.

Daito - A long sword, whose cutting edge, was over 24 inches in length, as contrasted with such shorter swords as the Wakizashi (18 inches.)

Dan - Category of rank in Japanese, Okinawan and Korean martial arts that classifies students, instructors and masters who wear the black belt. It usually takes three to four years of ascent through the Kyu or Gup grades to reach 1st-degree black belt, at which the dan ranks commence in some systems, 6th degree and upward are awarded for merit or accomplishment, instead of physical proficiency.

The dan ranks for Japanese and Okinawan martial arts are:

shodan - 1st degree

nidan - 2nd degree

sandan - 3rd degree

yodan - 4th degree

godan - 5th degree

rokudan - 6th degree

shichidan - 7th degree

hachidan - 8th degree

kudan - 9th degree

judan - 10th degree

juichidan - 11th degree

junidan - 12th degree

The dan ranks for Tae Kwon Do (Korean) are:

illdan - 1st degree

yeedan - 2nd degree

samdan - 3rd degree

sahdan - 4th degree

ohdan - 5th degree

yookdan - 6th degree

childan - 7th degree

paldan - 8th degree

koodan - 9th degree

shibdan - 10th degree


chodan - 1st degree

ea dan - 2nd degree

samdan - 3rd degree

sadan - 4th degree

ohdan - 5th degree

yukdan - 6th degree

childan - 7th degree

paldan - 8th degree

kudan - 9th degree

shipdan - 10th degree

Dan Tian - See Tan Tien.

Danjun - Part of the body just below the navel which is believed to be the source of ki.

Dao (or Tao) - "The Way" The spiritual path of "no-mindedness" practiced by (who else?) daoists.

Daojiao - "Daoism"

Da Mo - "Bodhidharma" The buddhist patriarch who brought Ch'an Buddhism and internal training to Shaolin. Often considered to be the founder of Shaolin Kung Fu.

Dayang - The female black belt ranks in the Filipino art Arnis de mano.

Degree - Black belt rank given in martial art ot one who has completed a prescribed course of study. No such ranks were issued originallly in the Chinese styles, other than master and student. See also dan.

Deru pon - A term used to denote the winning of a Judo contest in the opening seconds before a contestant has had time to adjust him or herself, or even grasped the opponent's jacket.

Deshi - "Disciple" or "student."

Dhaztanar - The "crystal-towered," is the largest city of Sephar. Fabled and fabulous, is the key to trade between the east and the west. It is one end of the Silk Road, the busiest caravan route between Faerun and Shou Lung. It is the largest port on Gbor Nor, shipping goods down the Rauthenflow to the Alambar Sea. It is the home of the Caliph, master of all Semphar.

Dhyana- The Indian meditative sect of Mahayana Buddhism.

Dian Mai - "press the cavities" Refers to any technique in which pressure is exerted on Qi meridians or cavities to disrupt their order.

Dim Mak - The cantonese pronunciation for Dian Mai.

Ding Bu (or Ding Bo) - "T stance".

Djuroes - Dancelike fighting movements used in the Indonesian martial arts, similar to Karate katas.

Do - When it follows any particular style of the Japanese martial arts, this term means the "way," or mor clearly, "the way to enlightenment, self-realization, and understanding." Do implies that a martial art has been transformed from a practical means of combat to an educational form with emphasis on perfection of human character. Kendo breastplate; constructed chiefly of heavy strips of bamboo covered by laquered leather. The leatherwork and lacquer are often beautifully decorated.

Dobak - Korean term for a martial arts uniform.

Dogi - Japanese term for a martial arts uniform.

Dogu - Tools, equipment, or instruments used in martial arts practice.

Dohyo - A circular ring, fifteen feet in diameter, in which Sumo contests are conducted.

Dohyo Iri - The ceremonial entry of the Sumo champions into the arena.

Doi Chi Gwan - A chinese weapon develop from an agricultural tool used to seperate rice from chaff. Identical the Nunchaku.

Dojang- A Korean word meaning training hall.

Dojo - Facility in which Karate, Judo, Aikido and other Japanese do arts are practiced; also called Gakko (school). In early Japan, it was the name of a place, usually part of a Zen temple, devoted to religious exercise. Its original Sanskrit meaning, bodhimandala, is the "place of enlightenment" in Japanese, this word means "place of the way." This name was adopted by the Japanese warrior to identify all the halls where he practiced the martial arts.

The four sides of a dojo have special names and functions. The central locale is called Kamiza, implying "upper seat"; it is the place of honor reserved for instructors, honored guests, and Judo officials. Opposite the Kamiza is the shimoza, or "lower seat," the meeting place for all students. During the official ceremonies and instructional periods, students are assembled in ranks along this side.

When facing the Kamiza, the side of the dojo to the right is called Joseki, or "uppper side"; on the left is the Shimoseki, or "lower side." When instructed, students line up along the Shimoseki, while instructors face them from the Joseki.

Dojo Etiquette - Some of the rules common to all dojo are:

1. Students must bow when entering or leaving the workout area.

2. Students must wear the traditinal uniform to all practice sessions.

3. All uniforms must be clean and in good condition.

4. Students must keep their bodies clean and nails trimmed.

5. Students must not wear jewerly or sharp objects when working out.

6. Students must not chew gum or candy, or eat while in the dojo.

7. Students must not engage in idle talk while in the dojo and should remain attentive at all times.

8. Students must always be courteous and helpful to each other.

9. Students should never use their skills, except in self defense.

Dojo Oath - Code of conduct in the dojo and a guide to everyday life.

It was written by isshinryu's founder Tatsuo Shimabuku.

We will train our hearts and bodies for a firm, unshaking spirit.

We will pursue the true meaning of the martial way so that in time our senses may be alert.

With true vigor, we will seek to cultivate a spirit of self-denial.

We will observe the rules of courtesy, respect our superiors and refrain from violence.

We will pay homage to our creator and never forget the true virtue of humility.

We will look upwards to wisdom and strength, not seeking other desires.

All our lives, through the disciplines of Karate, we will seek to fulfill the true meaning of the way.

Dojyu - The imperial city of Kozakura.

Doshu - Master of the Way.

Dozukiri - The second stage of Kyudo in which the archer sets his body into a firm stance.

Dragons - Oriental dragons are very diferent from western or Zakharan dragons. Instead of being different species, differentiated by their color and alignment, they are almost supernatural creatures, each type an official in the Celestial Bureaucracy. Each type is charged with some aspect of government - the Li Lung control the energies of the earth, while the Tun Mi Lung is the dispenser of ocean storms. Humans know of the divine importance of dragons, and often prepare ceremonial precessions and banquets, even worship, to curry flavor and please dragons.

Dragonwall - Marks the current western border of Shou Lung, forming a protective barrier thousands of miles long. Said to be the hardened body of a great dragon.

Dumog - An early form of wrestling practiced by Filipino natives.


Eight Million Gods - Ancient religion of Kozakura and Wa, a collection of beliefs and rituals that relate to various nature deities. There is no great teacher or book for the Eight Million Gods, nor uniform rituals of worship. Observances vary from deity to deity and shrine to shrine.

Eishin Ryu - The original style of Iaijutsu that embraces numerous Kata and is combat oriented.

Eku - "Oar." A weapon developed by Okinawan farmers. Today it is a training weapon common to Okinawan Karate.

Elemental Tribes - Faith of the Purang hillmen of the Jungle Lands. They recognize a wide number of nature spirts and deities, whom they have grouped into tribes based on each spirit's relationship to the elements. River, rain, and monsoon deities are members of the water elemental tribe; those of plant, field, and stone are of the earth element tribe, and so on. The specific deities honored varies from place to place.

Embujo - A place of exhibition or athletic performances where martial arts events are often staged.

Emperor Kai Tsao Shou Chin - Samurai emperor of Shou Lung, is possibly the most powerful individual on all of Toril. Known as the Rebuilder of the Dragon, is known as a reformer, seeking to heal religious shisms in Shou Lung, replace corrupt officials with new blood, protected the peasants from nobles attempting to create new fiefs, and has elevated science and alchemy to the traditional ministries.

Encho - "Continuation" or "extension." The overtime period of a match.

Enteki - The art of long-distance archery.

Eri - Lapel.

Eri Katsu - The lapel method of resuscitation used in Judo.

Eskrima - See Arnis.

Esquiva - A Spanish word meaning escape, defend, repel, get away, move out of the way, etc. It is also used in Spanish poetry, literature and prose, to indicate a demeanor of shyness or elusiveness.

Estocador - A practitioner of Arnis.


Fa - Art or method.

Family - Is a very important part of most Kara-Turans lives. Family here does not mean just the father, brothers, and sisters of the individual, but the entire set of relations - uncles, grandparents, cousins, great-uncles, aunts, and in-laws. Knowing one's family and its collection of alliances and feuds is of extreme importance in Oriental society.

Furthermore, the family includes its ancestors - especially those who achieved great fame in their own day. These ancestors are treated with respect and reverence and can add great honor to a family. Often the warrior rides into battle proclaiming the deeds of his ancestors as proof of his own worth. The government official holds his ancestors as brilliant examples to be followed. A person who does not know his family and its past is often not considered a whole man.

Fari Gatka - An Indian form of fencing centered around shields (fari) and swords (gatka). The gatka is a three foot, leather-covered stick. The fari, nine inches in diameter, is also leather bound. To score points the stick must simply touch the vital points designated on the opponent's body.

Fen Jin - "divide muscles/tendons" Refers to Qin Na techniques in which muscles or tendons are purposefully injured. Sometimes said as: Fen Jin Shou (dividing tendon hands).

Feng Shui - Literally "Wind and Water," is the ancient Shou art of place divination. A master of Feng Shui is able to divine the proper place in which to perform certain activities, such as casting spells, creating magical devices, or locating safe places for camps and fortifications. Every aspect of Shou life holds elements of Feng Shui. Good Feng Shui can be round doors or the color red, while bad Feng Shui can be promoted by the color black or windows or doors facing west.

Five Elements Theory - Water, fire, wood, metal and earth. Working through these five elements, chi or ki produce the five atmospheric conditions, the five grains, the five planets, the five metals, the five colors, the five tastes and so on.

Fojiao - Buddhism.

Forbidden City - Located in the heart of Imperial Capitol, it is the truly the Empire of Shou Lung's center. Within this compound are the Palaces of the Emperor and his family, the halls of the government, and the great Hall of Judgement where the Son of Heaven sits upon the Jade Throne and rules the Empire. It is surrounded by huge walls nearly three stories high.

Fou Tou Ou - A sword used in Kung Fu, known as the "hook and crescent" sword.

Fu - The battle axe.

Fu Antei - A Judo term denoted instability or lack of balance.

Fu Jya - A style of Kung Fu that employs both hard and soft techniques.

Fuchi - The metal sleeve located at the base of the handle next to the guard of a Samurai sword.

Fukai - To hold strongly.

Fukiya - Pins and poison darts shot through a blowgun.

Fukubu - A target area in sport Karate that includes the diaphragm, abdomen and side chest area.

Funayuhrei - In Japanese folklore, a ghost ship that travels silently at night or in thick fog. It appears suddenly without sound or lights. Meeting one on the sea is fatal. The appearance of a Funayuhrei itself. As for the victims, if they are lucky, they drown. If they are unlucky, they might be captured, tortured and eaten by the isohime, a giant, fantastical mermaid that likes to catch the survivors of sinking ships.


Gajin - Foreigners, not from Kara-Tur, who do not understand such concepts as honor or the importance of family.

Gake - Hooking action used in some ankle and sacrifice throws.

Gakko - School.

Ganmen - A target area referred to in sport Karate. It includes all of the head and face area.

Gar - "family" Often used when refering to a particular style of Wushu. Example: Hung Gar Wu Shu = Hung Family Martial Arts.

Gargantua - Truly monstrous creatures in proportion and ferocity, known to reach heights of 200 feet or more. They appear in many different forms, but the most frequently encountered types are those of giganitc humanoids, insects, and reptiles. These beasts tower over virtually anything they encounter. Their origin is unknown; all men know is that they occasionally appear from distant jungles, hidden islands, or the depths of the sea to ravage the land. The appearance of one is a national or at least regional emergency.

Gashadokuro - In Japanese folklore, the gohsts of people who have starved to death. The Gashadokuro ("starving skeleton") appears as a giant skeleton - up to 15 times taller than a person - made up of the bones of the starved dead. It roams about after midnight and announces itself with a ringing noise that sounds in the ears. If you do not flee, it will bite off your head with its giant teeth.

Gatame - Locking or holding.

Gedan - A term often used in Karate to pinpoint an area to be attacked. Usually refers to the lower trunk area.

Geisya - A Kara-Tur girl (more commonly Kozakuran or Wa) that is trained to provide (as by playing on the samisen, dancing, serving food or drinks, or by sympathetic, witty or amusing talk) entertainment and lighthearted company as for a man or group of men. Geisyas are not prostitues - that is the yujo or korobi geisha. Geisyas are similiar to western bards, able to sing, dance, and compose impromptu poetry.

Gekken - A name often used in place of Kendo during the Meiji era (1868 - 1912), especially by the military.

Genin - Ninja's of the lowest rank who were often responsible for carrying out dangerous assignments.

Genseiryu - A style of Karate characterized by tumbling and somersaults.

Grenade - A common piece of equipment used by ninjas. They are not grenades in the modern sense - they do not burst with explosive force. Instead, they are carefully blown-out eggshells filled with a variety of powders. Hollowed out nutshells and paper packets are also used. They are used to blind opponents and create distractions.

Geri - Kick.

Gi- A Japanese word meaning training uniform.

Giri- Literally "right reason." A sense of obligation or duty.

Gong Bu (or Gong Bo) - "bow stance".

Goshi - Hip.

Gosoku - A modern system of Karate founded by Tak Kubota of Los Angeles, California.

Go Ti - An ancient form of Chinese wrestling.

Gunbai - A rigid iron or wooden fan carried by generals in battle and used today by Sumo referees as a symbol of authority.

Gung Fu - cantonese for Kung Fu.

Gup - "Grade" or "class." A Korean grade designating a level of achievement below black belt.

Gyaku - "Reverse" or "opposite."

Gyoji - The referee of a Sumo match.


Hachimaki - "Head wrapping." A light cotton towel, also known as a tengui, wrapped around the forehead to restrict perspiration from running into the eyes and face.

Hai Nu - Intelligent aquatic humanoids that live in the sea.

Hajime - "Begin." Referee's command used to start a Japanese martial arts match.

Hakama - "Divided skirt." The skirtlike trousers or cullotes primarily worn in Kendo, aikido, Iaido, and sometimes the upper ranks of Judo.

Hakko Ryu - A form of Jujutsu in which atemi (striking) techniques are emphasized.

Halberd - A shafted weapon with an axelike cutting blade, sometimes used to describe the Chinese Quando.

Hanbo - A three foot wooden staff.

Han Mu Kwan - "Military arts school." A style of Korean Karate.

Hanshi - "Master." A respected master, of Japanese martial disciplines, who is of eigth- to tenth-degree black belt rank, although not all masters receive this title.

Hansoku Gachi - "Winner by violation." The decision awarded in a match when an opponent has violated the rules.

Hansokumake - "Loser by violation." A verdict against the loser when there has been a violation of the rules in a match.

Hantachi- Literally "half standing." A stance on one knee. Also, a training format in which one student is standing and the other kneeling.

Hantei - "Judgement" or "decision." A command by the referee to the judges to choose the winner of a match when neither contestant has scored or if the score is tied.

Hapkido - "way of coordinating power." A Korean martial art characterized by kicking without retraction and composed of three primary skills - nonresistance when meeting force, circular motion to countering and attacking, and the water principle - total penetration of an enemy's defenses.

Hara - "Abdomen." Gravity and mass in the human body, traditionally considered in Eastern thought to be the seat of the soul and center of ki.

Haragei - The art of concentrating ki in the abdomen; disciplines focusing on developing the Tanden.

Harai - "Sweep" or "sweeping."

Hara Kiri - See Seppuku".

Hata - "Flag." The flags used by referees or line persons to indicate scores, decisions, or jogai.

Hauri - Hip.

Hengeyokai - Intelligent animals which can assume human form. Several subraces exist, each a diferent type of animal; examples include carp, cat, fox, and rat. They are found throughout the Oriental world, usually on the fringes of huamn-settled lands.

The ability to change shape is natural to hengeyokai. They are not lycanthropes, and do not have their symptoms or vulnerabilities.

Hidari - Left or left side.

Hiji - Elbow. Also known as empi.

Hikiwake - "Draw" or "tie." Referee's term denoting a draw in a match.

Himm - "Force" or "power."

Hirate - Foreknuckle.

Hiza - Knee or lap.

Ho - "harmony".

Ho Goo - Protective equipment worn by Tae Kwon Do competitors to minimize injury while sparring.

Hohup - "Breathing."

Hojo Jutsu - The art of tying. Techniques used to tie and immobilize a victim by means of a cord.

Hojutsu - The art of firearms or gunnery.

Hombu - "Headquarters." This term can be used to define any headquarters for a martial arts school.

Honor - Is different from the honor of a paladin or cavalier, but similar to Zakharan honor. It is not a judgement of good and evil. Individuals of high honor are not necessarily good and those with low honor are not necessarily evil. A cruel villain can possess high honor and a heroic Samurai, through unfortuante circumstances, might possess low honor. Honor is more a measure of the deeds accomplished by both the individual and his family or clan. It reflects obedience, loyalty, talent, and success, qualities that can be held by any individual regardless of alignment.

Hop Gar - A style of Chinese Kung Fu, also known as Lama, which is composed of twelve short-hand and twelve long-hand maneuvers.

Horse Stance - A basic posture in all the martial arts. Legs spread approximately twice the width of the shoulders, body weight evenly distributed and toes pointed straight forwars. One's "horse" is thought to be the center of strength (in conjunction with the tan-tien and small of the back). Although not all stances fall into the category of the horse stance proper, which refers specifically to such stances as the horse-riding stance, chi-ma-pu, and kung-chien-pu, the strength of one's stances in general is often referred to as horse strength.

In many styles, students are required to stand in a horse position for an hour or more before beginning training. Other systms have a horse "set," as in Choy-Lu-Fut and Hop-Gar, in which a succession of horse stances are assumed.

Hosin Sul - Self-defense techniques.

Hsing I - "Form of mind." An internal system of Kung Fu emphasizing linear movement.

Hung Gar - "Hung family" A particular style of southern Wushu/Kung Fu which emphasizes deep, rooted stances and powerful hand work.

Hwa Chuan - "Flowery hand system." A northern Chinese style of Kung Fu.

Hwarang - A band of Korean warriors who, much like the Japanese Samurai, adhered to strict philosophical and moral codes.

Hwarang Do - "Way of the flower of manhood." A native Korean philosophical code similar to Japanese bushido and possessing a structured series of physical techniques that were advocated by warriors known as the Hwarang.

Hyung - "Pattern," "form," or "mold." A series of prearranged offensive and defensive movements executed against imaginary attacking opponents. Also known as katas or poomse.


I - "Will," "mind," or "intent."

Iai - "Swordplay." A sword exercise employing a series of thrusting and cutting techniques while drawing and returning the blade.

Iaido - "Way of the sword." The modern art of drawing the Samurai sword from its scabbard.

Iaijutsu- Although this is a skill learned and used with a weapon and not a peaceful proficiency, it is one that can be learned by anyone willing to devote the time and effort. Iaijutsu is the art of fast drawing a melee weapon - unsheathing it with blinding speed.

Ibuki - "Breath control." Isotonic breathing exercises based on dynamic tension principles practiced in conjunction with, and also separate to, the execution of Karate techniques.

Ikiryoh - In Japanese folklore, a spirit that is born of evil thoughts and feeling harbored by a person. The Ikiryoh, energized by hatred, becomes powerful enough to leave its source and enter and possess the object of a person's hatred. Once inside, it kills the victim by slowly draining the person's energy. The Ikiryoh is extremely difficult to exorcise. Rites to drive it away include the reading of Buddhist sutras (teachings).

Impossible Palace of the Siver Domes- A legendary palace which appears at random times all over Shou Lung. It is most often seen in times of great strife within Shou Lung, and legends tell of its mysterious inhabitant(s) providing information, weapons, or spells to those brave enough to enter its doors.

In- The soft, female, dark, or negative principle of nature.

In Ibuki - "Passive" or "internal breathing." A soft-but-firm type of breathing that stems from deep in the abdomen. It is common to many different martial arts.

Island Kingdoms- Series of island nations to the south of the main continent of Kara-Tur. The most well known are Bawa and Bertan. Known for their volcanic origins, dense jungle, seagoing merchants, and wako. At least in Bawa, a caste system is rigidly enforced; from top down are the nobles, the propertied, the laboring, and the outcasts.

The region is also infamous for cannibals and headhunters.

Isshin Ryu - "One-heart method." A hybrid form of unarmed combat based on several Okinawan Karate systems, founded by Tatsuo Shimabuku in 1954.


Jade - A semi-precious stone, normally a transluscent green color, but may be red, white, bluish green, or black. Highly valued in Shou Lung, it is crafted and shaped into many ornamental forms and into many uses. A highly valued trade item everywhere in Kara-Tur, those who carve jade are much respected.

Jeet Kune Do - "Way of the intercepting fist." A collection of basic mental and physical concepts, observations of combat maneuvers, and philosophies of attitude gathered and developed by the late Bruce Lee.

Jeja - Student.

Jikan - "Time." A term used by the timekeepers at the beginning and end of a Japanese style match.

Jin - Refers to power in the martial arts. A combination of Li and Chi (internal power).

Jing - Literally, "essence or power" Jing is considered to be the essence of the body. Jing (a Yin element) is combined with Qi (a Yang element) and body fluids to make blood. It also is sometimes used to refer to martial power.

Jinja- A Japanese word meaning shrine.

Jip Joong - Concentration. "Power gathering." The act of breathing while meeting an opponent's attack in order to unify one's internal and external forces.

Jirugi - Punch.

Jito - Stewardship, offered but not required of Samurai of 7th level or higher. It is stewardship of one of his daimyo's properties, of which the Samurai must watch over - protecting property, settling disputes, quelling rebellions, and collecting taxes. In return, the Samurai receives one-quarter of all the taxes he collects. The Samurai is watched over by the daimyo's shugo, or constable of the province.

Jiyu - Freedom (of movement, et al).

Jo - A four foot long wooden staff.

Jodan - "Upward" or "upper level." A compound word affixed to the name of techniques in Japanese Karate.

Jodo - "Way of the stick." The Japanese method of stick fighting using a Jo. Also known as jojutsu.

jogai - "Out of bounds." A term used by a referee to denote that either or both contestants are out of bounds.

Jojutsu - See Jodo.

Jonin - A Ninja's leader.

Joomuk - Fist.

Joseki - In a traditional Japanese dojo, the area where instructors often times line up and face the students at the beginning and end of each practice session.

Jofu Fa - An ancient form of Chinese combat that emphasized close-range grappling techniques.

Ju - A Japanese word meaning suppleness, flexibility, or yielding.

Applied to combat, the principle of Ju is one of adaptation, taking advantage of an opponent's method and force to defend or neutralize his purpose. Martial arts chronicles confirm, though Ju, a Chinese influence upon that school of thought in Japan which held the principle of nonresistence to be superior, not only in moral sense, but in the practical reality of combat.

Judo - "Gentle way." A Japanese art of self-defense and a sport with Olympic recognition. Judo is a method of turning an opponent's strength and overcoming by skill rather than sheer strength.

Jujutsu - "Art of gentleness." Literally, the technique or the art of suppleness, gentleness. All of these terms, however, represent a single principle, a general method of applying a technique using the human body as a weapon in unarmed combat. Also known as jiu jitsu.

Judoka - A practitioner of Judo.

Junbi Sogi - Ready stance.

Jushin - Center of gravity.

Jutsu - Fighting method with the bugei, arts of war, rather than with sporting or aesthetic values, which are generally linked to the Do (way) methods developed in Japan after the mid-18th century. Some of the more popular were Karate-Jutsu, Kenjutsu, aiki-jutso, and jujutsu; these were the antecedents of Karate-do, dendo, Aikido and Judo. Also spelled jitsu.

Junk - Generic term for most types of Oriental ships, includes a great many subtypes. Lorcas are among the largest and most advanced, showing much western infuence in their hull, but with more traditional rigging and sails. The trading junk or Pechili trading junk is a seafaring passenger and cargo caring ship common throughout Kara-Tur. Traditional war ships include the small war junk (with around 2-6 artillery engines) and the ocean war junk or ta-ping-ch'uan (with around 4-16 artillery engines). The river junk is a sailing cargo boat for rivers and bays. The crooked-stern junk is a river cargo vessel built to negoitate the most treachorous rapids, using bow sweeps for added maneuverability. There is also the fishing junk, the flower junk (generally a floating restraunt or teahouse), and the house junk. Sampans are generally smaller rowed vessels, used for fishing, ferrying, and cargo transfer. The Dragon boat, unique to Shou Lung, has one sole purpose; to race in the annual Dragon Boat festival.

Jutte - A forked iron truncheon that can parry an attack by a sword.

Jutte Jutsu - Art of the Jutte.


Kabuki - Type of theather most common in Wa, less cerebral and more spirited than Noh. These perfomances feature energetic dancing and singing and rarely last more than a couple of hours. Like Noh dramas, Kabuki actors are exclusively male.

Kabukimono - Loosely organized fraternal groups of soldiers in Wa. Their colorful costumes and proud songs highlight the parades of many holidays.

They typify the problems of having too many military men with too much time on their hands. At best, their juvenile needs for excitement are merely annoying; at worst, they can be dangerous.

Kabuto - The helmet worn by the Japanese Samurai. It was made of iron or laquered leather, and was secured to the head by a series of silk cords.

Kachi - "Win" or "victory."

Kachinuki Shiai - A type of contest in which a contestant takes on each opponent in succession without rest between matches until he or she is defeated. Each win counts as one, and a draw counts as one-half but eliminates both contestants.

Kagi Yari - "Key spear." A hooked spear used for parrying and hooking an opponent's weapon. Like the Jutte, it was useful to the police in making arrests.

Kaiken - "Short knife." A six-inch knife used by women of the Samurai class.

Kajukenbo - A hybrid method of combat founded in Hawaii in 1947 by five experts - Walter Choo, Joseph Holke, Frank Ordonez, Adriano Emperado, and Clarence Chang.

Kakato - Heel of the foot.

Kakup - Rank.

Kalari Payat - An ancient form of Indian combat embracing hand-to-hand techniques and weapons such as the staff and daggers.

Kama - A straight-bladed sickle. It is a farmer's tool that can also be used as a weapon for great effect. Ninjas tend to use this weapon, since it can be carried without arousing great suspicion.

Kamae - "Attitude" or "posture." The stances; a general term found in all of the Japanese disciplines.

Kama Yari - A spear to which a single-edged, sickle-shaped blade is attached.

Kami - A spirit as conceived in the Shinto religion. Divines spirits who dwell in nature.

Kamikaze - Divine Wind.

Kamiza - Literally "spirit seat." A shelf on the front wall of a Japanese style training hall where a shrine often resides.

Kang Fa - "Hard method." A ancient art of Chinese boxing that concentrated on kicking and thrusting techniques.

Kan Shu - "Penetration hand." A Chinese training method in which a practitioner thrusts his or her hands into powder, then rice, sand, beans, and finally pebbles, to condition the limbs for striking.

Kanzashi - "Hairpin." An ornamental hairpin used for self-protection by the women of feudal Japan.

Karate - "Empty hand" or "China hand." An unarmed method of combat in which all parts of the anatomy are used to punch, strike, kick or block.

Karateka - Practitioners of Karate.

Kashira - "Pommel cap" or "ferrule." A metal cap covering the tip of the hilt of Japanese swords, daggers and so forth.

Kata - A series of prearranged maneuvers practiced in many of the Oriental martial arts in order for one to become proficient in techniques.

Katsu - A Japanese word meaning victory.

Katana - A single-edged slightly curved sword ending in a chisel point. It evolved gradually from the normal sword and is noted for its superior construction and design. It is perhaps one of the finest types of swords made. Great care is taken in making the katana and the forging and construction of it is considered a rare and valuable art.

For the Samurai, the katana is more than just a sword. It is part of his honor and the honor of this family. It is his personal weapon, not be used by others. To touch the scabbard of the sheathed katana or to draw the blade without permission is to insult the Samurai.

Keibo - A wooden club used by the Japanese police.

Kendo - "The way of the sword." The modern art and sport of Japanese fencing. The object of a kendo contest is to deliver scoring cuts to an opponent's predetermined target areas.

Kenjutsu - "Art of the sword." An aggressive method of swordsmanship practiced by the Japanese feudal warriors in which the combatants pitted naked blade against naked blade.

Kenkyaku - "Fencer." One of many words used to describe those who lived by the sword, especially in literary usage.

Kenpo - "Fist method." A modern term describing one of the more innovative martial arts practiced in Hawaii and the Americas, developed by Ed Parker.

Kensai - Martial artists in the purist sense; their life is devoted to mastering a single weapon and achieving perfection in its use. Traditionally Kensai means "sword saint" or "sword master," but Kensai have expanded to include almost any weapon or fighting skill.

Keri - Kick.

Khahan - Or great khan, a Hordeland khan of khans. The ruler of all the khans, and is a title of great prestige and power. Not passed on to father from son, but is that individual's title until taken away by force. Khans rule the ordu, or hordes, of which several make up a tribe. Several obogh, or villages (of sorts) make up each ordu - generally three or four.

Khazari - Small nation of mountain dwellers under the nominal command of a hereditary prince. The Silk Road runs through the center of the country, making Khazari a strategic territory for caravan trade. It is located in one of the northermost extensions of the Yehimal, not far south from the southern terminus of the Dragonwall.

Ki - Japanese word meaning "spirit"; energy believed to be the source of life. It was generally held that this powerful source of energy could be tapped only if a man had stabilized that position of inner centralization in the Hara. In India this vital force has been known for centuries as prajna, in China as Chi, and in Japan as Ki.

The coordinated energy of the Hara could infuse a man with tremendous vitality and make him powerful in action, more so that the man who had developed muscular power alone. As might be expected, the range of the methods of using these inner techniques is considerable, but all of them included in addition to meditation and concentration, the fundamental exercise of abdominal breathing.

In ancient texts, the word itself is translated as air, atmosphere, breath. The doctrine was a main source of metaphysical and intellectual speculation for Indian, Chinese, Tibetan and Japanese scholars, philosophers and religious leaders. Finally, it was adopted by almost all the important schools of martial arts.

Ki or Chi, is a concept that is both natural and simple. Those who make of it something mysterious and akin to magical power miscomprehend what is essentially a common property of all human beings. Learning to release and utilize ki is where the difficulty lies. Its function in the human body has been described as "electricity the flows back and forth along the wires of our nerves," and as "the psycho-physiological power associated with blood, breath and mind; the biophysical energy generated by respiratory rhythm.

Ki Power - Difficult to define term, but is a force or energy drawn from within a person to allow that individual to accomplish seemingly impossible tasks. Some classes, such as the Kensai and Ninja, are trained to harness the ki power present in all individuals.

Kiai - Focused or concentrated life force. Also a "spirit shout."

Kihap - See "ki."

Kihon - "Basics" or "basic training." In Karate, the repitition of the fundamental techiques.

Kiritsuki - "Cut and thrust." The cutting action of the sword.

Kito Ryu - One of the early Jujutsu schools which especially influenced Jigoro Kano's formulation of Kodokan Judo.

Koan - A riddle with no logical answer used in the Rinzai sect of Zen to confound the conscious mind and allow the aspirant to achieve spontaneous insight.

Kobudo - "Weapons way." A generic term coined in the 20th century, which can be used to describe collectively all Okinawan combatives. However, it is more accurate to specify "Okinawan kobudo" in order to distinguish them from "Japanese kobudo."

Kodachi - "Small sword." A forerunner of the Wakizashi, that boasts a blade between twelve and eighteen inches.

Kodansha - A high-ranking Judo black belt of fifth degree and above.

Kogusoku - An ancient method of unarmed combat mentioned in connection with Kumiuchi and Sumo in the oldest records of the Japanese martial arts.

Kohai - A junior in a school or organization.

Kojiri - The chape or end cap of the scabbard of a Samurai sword.

Kokyu - "Breathing" or "ki."

Konakijijii - In Japanese folklore, the spirit of a baby who was left to die in the woods. Konakijijii means "the crying old baby." It lures people who are out in the woods with the sound of its crying. When people get close, they see that the baby strangely has the face of an old man. If you pick the baby up, you will not be able to let go of it, and it will suddenly become so heavy that it will crush you.

Kongjiao - "confucianism".

Korobokuru - Small, hairy men who live in remote wildernesses, similar to western dwarves. They delight in nature, simple art, and craft. Living in vast jungles, snowy mountain forests, or barren wilderness areas, they seldom come into contact with humans.

Since they have a lower level of civilization and the general conceit of humans, humans consider Korobokuru to be backward primtives, and rarely accept them as full members of human society. They are typically seen as rude, pugnacious, boastful, and somewhat comical by the rest of the world.

Koryo - A long peninsula that extends from Shou Lung down to the northern islands claimed by Kozakura. This mountainous land was once known as Choson, and is really a loose association of three kingdoms, united under a strong warlord king.

Koshi - Ball of the foot, or the hip(s).

Kote - Wrist.

Kou - "wrapping".

Kozakura - Or the "Little Cherry Blossom," is inhabited by the same race of people as found on Wa, and has similiar customs and traditons. Kozakura howerver is far from a unified state. For several centuries it has been the scene of incessant warfare between powerful daimyos, all struggling to gain the title of Shogun.

Krabii - A sword used in Krabii Krabong.

Krabii Krabong - A traditional Thai martial art still practised in Thailand. This tradition focuses on hand-held weapons techniques, specifically the Krabii, Plong, Ngao, Daap Sawng Meu and Mai Sun-Sawk.

Kubikajiri - In Japenese folklore, a head-eating ghost that lurks about graveyards late at night searching for its own lost head. The kubikajiri eats the heads of both the living and the dead. It announces its presence with the smell of fresh blood. If you see it, you are likely to lose your own head.

Kuen - See Kata.

Kuan Tao - A method of Chinese boxing practiced in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Phillipines.

Kuji Kiri - "Energy channeling." A hypnotic movement of the fingers used by the Ninja's to confuse their opponents. Known as mudras in Sanskrit.

Kumiss - Fermented mare's milk, an imporant part of Hordeland nomad's diets and used in many ceremonies.

Kumite - sparring.

Kumiuchi - "Grappling." Wrestling techniques originally used by the Samurai on the battlefield and which gave birth to Jujutsu.

Kuneh - Bowing.

Kung Fu - A generic term for a majority of the Chinese martial arts. Kung Fu has two major divisions. The southern styles display a clear preference for techniques of strength and power, whereas the northern styles employ soft, open movement.

Kup - The grade levels below black belt in the Korean martial arts.

Kupso - The vital points of the body.

Kusari Fundo - A small chain with weighted ends.

Kusarigama - A chain-sickle weapon, noted for its efficiency in neutralizing the sword at long range.

Kuzushi - To off-balance an opponent before executing a throw or some other technique.

Kwonbop - A Chinese method of unarmed combat that spread to and was popularized in Korea between A.D. 1147 - 1170.

Kwan Dao (or Quan Do) - "Kwan's sword" A polearm weapon with a large, sweeping blade at one end and generally a point at the other. Traditionally very heavy but in contemporary Wushu, it is light and fast.

Kwoon (or Guan) - The chinese martial artist's training hall.

Kyokpa - Breaking.

Kyoshi - A Japanese martial arts teacher who is sixth- or seventh-degree black belt rank.

Kyu - A rank designation signifying a level of achievement below black belt or dan rank in the Japanese martial arts.

Kyudo - "Way of the bow." The modern Japanese practice of archery as a discipline of coordinated integration. Kyudo's basis is the clarity of execution, the poise, and the control over the bow.


Lakan - The male black belt rank in the Filipino art of arnis.

Lamas - Religious leaders of the Plain of Horses. Many supervise temples, while others reside in major cities or wander with no fixed abode.

Land of Snow Demons - The far northern reaches of Kara-Tur, a vast expanse of permafrost tundra, unbroken except for a few stunted trees and upheavals of rock.

Language - Their is no common as there is in Zakhara or Faerun, instead three main languages. Shou Lung, of which there are several dialects, is the most widely spoken, and can be heard in Shou Lung and T'u Lung. Kozakura is spoken in Kozakura and Wa. Beastlands is spoken to the west of Shou Lung, in the Hordelands. There are also several notable nonhuman languages - tengu, Oni, hobgoblin, and hengeyokai - and also a trade language and language used by ninjas. The trade language is understood universally, but has a limited vocabulary, and is really well-suited only for conversing about business and common needs.

Lathi - An Indian fighting art centered around a cane or bamboo staff about five feet in length.

Le - "pulling".

Li - A Chinese word meaning strength.

Lima Lama - "Hand of wisdom." An American martial art of Polynesian descent, which is composed of a combination of movements stemming from thirteen various Polynesian martial arts.

Liu Gar - A basic southern style of Chinese Kung Fu centered around close-range fighting.

Lords of Creation - Faith of the Jungle Lands, particularly the Kuong Kingdom. The lords are a close-knit family of powerful deities, each one responsible for a different aspect of earthly existence. Followers of this religion may worship a single Lord of Creation, or many at once.

Worshippers of the Lords of Creation have little of the philosophical perspective offered by the Path of Enlightenment, nor the respect for Nature Spirits found in those who follow the Elemental Tribes.

Lotus - Most prized flower in all of Kara-Tur, has aphrodisiac, sedative, or even posionous properties.

Lua - "Bone breaking." The native martial art of Hawaii, now extinct, which was similar to Japanese Jujutsu.


Ma Ai - The distance between two opponents.

Ma Bu (or Ma Bo) - See Horse Stance.

Machi -Yakko - Youth gangs whose members are the sons of shopkeepers and merchants, found in Wa. Originally organized for social functions, they are becoming increasingly involved in political activities. The government recognized Kabukimono have increasingly clashed with the non-sanctioned machi-yakko.

Mae - "Front" or "forward."

Mai Sun -Sawk - A pair of clubs used in Krabii Krabong

Mairi - Tapping with the hand to signify submission.

Make - A Japanes word meaning defeat.

Makeru - To lose or be defeated.

Makiwara - A Karate training post designed for toughening various striking points.

Malatra - Or the Jungle Lands, are south of T'u Lung and Shou Lung, and is a collective name, encompassing several peoples. The main civilizations are the Kuong Kingdom, the hill tribes of Purang, and the Seng of Laothan.

Laothan is the northern jungle area of Malatra, sweeping south in a curve from the T'u Lung border to the Dwai river. A region of vast rainforest and monsoons, its people bear many similiarities with those of T'u Lung.

Purang is a hilly region, little known, home to primitive tribesman, known for hunting with blowguns and poison darts.

Kuong is the southern jungle country of this region, and has the heaviest jungle of all Malatra. The people are racially similiar to those of Purang, but more advanced.

Man Catcher - A two-pronged pole arm. Each prong is curved to encircle a humanoid creature of man-size. The man catcher has spikes and sharpened edges to both damage the opponent and prevent the use of hands and arms.

Mandarinate - Of Shou Lung, is made up of the upper echelon of scholars and officials, and includes both court scholars and the heads of official ministries of the bureaucracy. It includes the Chancellor (right hand of the Emperor), the Chamberlain (responsible for maintaing the Household of the Imperial Court), the Emperor's Wu Jen, the High Priest (of the official Faith), among others.

Marki - Block.

Master - A title bestowed on a martial artist who has attained advanced rank after long years of study.

Mate - "Wait" or "stop."

Meijin - A Japanese word meaning "great master" or "Expert". One who has mastered an art far beyond the boundaries of physical prowess.

Mekugi - A bamboo pin used to secure the handle of a Samurai sword to the blade.

Men - The head protector used in kendo.

Menkyo Kaiden - A certificate of full proficiency in a Japanese martial art, usually awarded to an advanced student deemed more suited to carry on the translation of the art.

Menuki - Hilt ornaments of a Samurai sword.

Mi - The blade of a knife or sword.

Migi - "Right" or "right side."

Mi Tsung I - "Labyrinth art." A highly deceptive method of Kung Fu featuring rapid, baffling turns and attacks.

Mizugumo - "Water spider." A water-crossing device used by the Ninja's and composed of four carved pieces of wood fastened together to form a circle with a hole in the middle.

Mizukaki - A weblike device used by the Ninja's. They were placed on the feet during swimming. Similar to present-day flippers.

Mizu No Kokoro - "Mind like water." A psychological principle of the martial arts emphasizing the need to calm the mind, much like the surface of undisturbed water, while facing an opponent.

Modotte - A command for returning to the original position, used in competition.

Mokpyo - "Striking point" or "target." Weak areas of the body that can be effectively struck or kicked.

Mokusoh - "Quiet thought." A quiet form of meditation usually performed before and after a training session in the Japanese martial arts.

Monks - Seek to create a perfect union between mind and body through the practice of meditation and fighting skills.

Mononoke - In the ghost lore of Japan, the Mononoke are a type of ghost comparable to the poltergeist, but which live in inanimate objects. According to Shinto belief, all things, even inanimate objects, have their own unique spirit, or Kami, which gives them life. The Mononoke, however, like to scare or even kill people. Most of them live in or around temples, shrines and graveyards. Supposedly, priests can drive them away by reciting Buddhist sutras.

Moo Duk Kwan - "Institute of military virtue." A style of Korean martial arts similar to Tae Kwon Do.

Mooreup - Knee.

Motonoichi - "Return to the original position." A command used by a referee during a Karate match.

Mu - "Nothing." The Zen nothingness or emptyness. This principle is often used in the Japanese martial arts to make one clear in the mind of all thought so the body will respond instantly to any situation.

Mudansha - A martial arts student who has not yet attained the rank of black belt.

Mui Fa Jeong - "Plum flower stumps." A series of tree stumps driven into the ground on top of which certain styles practice Kung Fu.

Muk Yan Chong - "wooden dummy" A practice dummy made of hard wood. Most often used by Wing Chun practitioners.

Mulan Quan - "Mulan Fist" A style of Qi Gong based on a chinese hero of mythology.

Mune - Chest or abdomen.

Muton - The short sticks used in arnis, usually about three feet in length.

Myung Chi - Solar plexus.


Nage - Throw.

Nagare - Flow.

Naginata - "Reaping sword." A curved-blade spear, once used by Japanese Monks and Samurai. It is approximately seven feet in length including the blade. Many women of the Samurai class became adept at the use of this weapon.

Naiwan - Inner arm.

Nakago - The tang; that portion of the sword blade to which the hilt is attached.

Nan Quan - "southern fist" Refers to any southern style of Wushu/Kung Fu.

Naotte - A command to be at ease or relax.

Narande - A command to line up.

Nat - A basic Indian martial art called was developed by Kshatriyas.

Nature Spirits - Outward manifestations of the powers of various plants and inanimate objects found in nature. Lesser nature spirits are those of trees, flowers, rocks, and bamboo groves. Greater nature spirits include those of mountains, boulders, plains, extremely ancient trees, and small islands. All are associated with a particular object or place from which they derive their life force. Damage done to this thing or place affects the spirit accordingly.

Nei - "Internal".

Nei Gong (or Nei Kung) - refers to internal Kung Fu or Qi Gong.

Neikya - An advanced system of combat developed from Korean Kwonbop.

Nightingale Floors - Specially designed floors, meant to squeak when stepped upon, often found in the homes of important or powerful persons - to try and foil ninja assassins.

Ngao - A Halberd used in Krabii Krabong

Ninja - Are practitioners of Ninjutsu, the art of invisibility. They are masters of stealth, disguise, acrobatics, and assassination. They canot operate openly, and often are seen as bushi, Sohei, Wu Jen, or Yakuza.

There are actually three classes of ninjas. The highest is the Jonin, traditional head of a Ninja family. The middle class is the chunin, the go-betweens and messengers. The chunin are the most common ninjas (if ninjas can ever be considered common), and are usally dual-classed to hide their true identity. The lowest class was the genin, the opeartives. Although the genin sometimes leads a double life, more often they existed only as ninjas, living in remote base camps deep in the mountains.

Ninja-to - This is the Ninja's standard sword. It is approximately the length of a short sword, making it easier to conceal on the body. Unlike the Katana, the blade is straighter and of lower quality. However, in keeping with the Ninja's methods, the sword and scabbard have multiple uses, varying from Ninja to Ninja.

Ninjutsu - The art practiced by the Ninja of feudal Japan.

Noh - A type of drama pefromed in Kozakura and Wa. It combines speech, singing, and dance in as single performance. There are a great number of noh plays, mostly dealing with historical subjects. These plays are very exacting and stylized. Each move and word is meant to be done in a specific way, each costume represents a specific person, etc. Mastering Noh is very difficult, and Noh masters are highly prized.

Northern Wastes - Uncivlized region to the south of the Land of the Snow Demons. It is primarily made up of the Ama River Basin, which includes extensive regions of taiga and swamps. The Northern Wastes also includes the northern Koryaz Mountains.

Three "nations" or tribal groupings live in the Ama Basin, differing according to appearance, dialect, and culture. They are the Issacort (the most cohesive, forming a tribal confederation), the Pazruki, and the Wu-haltai (the least cohesive, its clans forming alliances only in times of need).

Nunchaku - This is a martial arts weapon, derived from the comon agricultural flail. It consists of a two lengths of hard wood or iron connected by a short chain or cord. It can be used to parry attacks, club an opponent, or catch weapons. It is easily concealed. Martial arts training is required to use this weapon effectively.

Nurikabe - In the folklore of the Japanese island of Kyushu, the nurikabe is the "wall poltergeist." It appears as a large white wall in front of people who are out walking about late at night. If you try to pass the wall, it will fall on you and crush you. If you turn and run from it, it will reappear in front of you. The only way to escape is to hit the bottom of the wall with a stick, and it will disappear.


O - "Big" or "great."

O Sensei - "Great teacher." The honorific prefix "o" attached the word Sensei indicates respect and acknowledgement of the chief instructor of a system. Most commonly associated with Uyeshiba Morihei, founder of modern day aikido.

Obi - The belt made specifically to hold a Samurai's daisho.

Odachi - See Tachi.

Omote - "Front" or "obvious."

On - A Japanese word meaning debt, obligation, or favor. A burden.

Oni - Fearsome spirits that dwell in desoloate and forbidding places. They usually stand seven to eight feet tall, have one to three eyes, and one or two horns on their head. They have human, bull, or horse heads, and many are evil.

Oni Ken - Extended knuckle fist.

Orei - "Respect" or "etiquitte." A expression of formal greeting in Karate.

Orun - Right.

Otoshi - Drop.

Outer Isles - Collective name for the small islands that border the main islands of Wa. Some are occupied by primitive races with exotic cultures. Others are inhabited by dangerous creatures. Many of the islands are virtually unexplored.


Pa Kua - "Eight Trigrams." One of three internal methods of Kung Fu. It is composed of various circling and linear postures named after and based on the movements of the snake, stork, dragon, hawk, lion, monkey and bear.

Pachigi - A Korean martial art in which the head is used to butt an opponent.

Pai Shih - A ceremony for a Kung Fu novice denoting his acceptance as a disciple.

Paitza - In the Tuigan empire of the Hordelands, an important sign of the Khahan's power, seving as an official passport, that those carrying one are on Khahan business and not to be harmed. It is a metal plate, about 1 foot long and 3 inches wide, with the value of the metal (iron, bronze, silver, or gold) determining the rank of the wearer.

Palmok - Forearm or wrist.

Pankration - "Game of all powers." An early Greek sport developed as a combination of earlier native forms of boxing and wrestling.

Parroh - "Return." A Korean command used in formal class to return to a ready stance.

Path, The - The officially recognized "state" religion of Shou Lung, primarily due to a well organized temple militia and strong influence at court. It emphasizes honor, duty, and respect to one's elders, ancestors, and the Imperial family. Out of character, it is Confuscianism.

The Path of Enlightenment is also observed among the Seng of the Jungle Lands.

Peichin - An Okinawan feudal title bestowed upon a Samurai by a lord for distinguished services rendered.

Penchak - "Evasion" or "warding off." An unarmed Indonesian martial art similar to a two-person dance.

Peng - "ward off".

Pentjak - One of numerous terms used to indicate Indonesian unarmed combat.

Plain of Horses - Also known as the Beastlands, is the Kara-Tur name for the eastern Hordelands, home to vast steppes and fierce armies of mounted warriors. It separates Kara-Tur from Faerun.

Plong - A Bo Stick used in Krabii Krabong

Pyschic Duel - A fierce but hidden struggle fought between warriors proud of their skills and their honor. The psychic duel does not require psionic talent. It is a test of the wills of the duelists - their courage, skill, and determination. It is an invisible fight, the outcome revealed by a faint grimace, the flicker of an eyelid, or the tic of a muscle. In it, the individual displays his mental determination as a warrior, showing just how tough he is.

Pyugi - Stretching.


Qi - See chi.

Qiang - See Chiang.

Qi Gong - See Chi Kung.

Qin Na - "grab control" Refers to the seizing and joint-locking techniques of Kung Fu and Wushu.

Quan (or chuan) - "fist" Often used in reference to a style of Wushu. Example TaiJi Quan = Supreme Ultimate Fist.

Quando - See bisento.


Ra-Khati - Very mysterious mountain kingdom of the Katakoro Shan mountains, near the eastern edges of the Hordelands. Ruled by the Dali Lama and his Lamas, strangers who enter are given three choices; remain inside forever, becoming citizens; die; or let their tongues be cut out, preventing them from telling the world about Ra-Khati.

Randori - Free sparring.

Rei - A command to bow.

Renmei - A federation, league, or union of Japanese martial arts clubs.

Renshi - A trainer. A teaching certificate roughly equivalent to fourth or fifth dan.

Renshu - Practice or training period.

Renzuki - Continuous attack.

Ri Ben - (Name of Japan)-Origin of the sun.

Rice - The one constant in the lands of Kara-Tur. Everyone eats rice, in one form or another, as it is served with every meal. It is boiled and served as a main course. It is cooked in a pasta-like gruel. Leftover rice is mixed with meats and vegetables. It is vinegared, shaped, and served cold. It is pounded and crushed and made into rice-cakes. It is ground into flour and formed into buns and noodles. It is mashed, fermented, and made into sake, a strong drink.

Riken - Backfist.

Ritsurei - Standing bow.

Rokushakubo - See Bo Stick.

Ronin - Literally "wave man." A Samurai without a master. He may have disgraced hismelf and been expelled from his daimyo's service as a consequence. He may voluntarily leave his master's service, especially if he must perform some act that would normally bring disgrace to his lord.

In Wa, there are a large number of Ronin, due the Shogunate's decision to reduce the numbers of fiefs and reorganize the administration; to many strong rulers were thought to be a threat to the nation's stability. Early some Ronin rebelled, but many have since become farmers or even laborers, living anonymously. Some of the more ambitious have become traders and merchants. They are generally respected by the common people of Wa for their integrity and sense of duty, and can regain full Samurai status by the decree of a daimyo.

Ryo - A feudal monetary measure of gold.

Ryu - A style of an art. A school.


Sabum - A Korean word meaning teacher.

Sai - A pronged truncheon about fifteen to twenty inches long, used as a defensive instrument against various weapons such as the sword. It was developed from an Okinawan farming tool.

Sam - The traditional uniform of Kung Fu.

Sambo - Modern Russian Grappling Art

Samurai - Members of an elite class of warrior nobility. Their prime duty is to be absolutely loyal to their master (daimyo) and serve him however he commands. They follow the code of Bushido (which see).

To properly serve his daimyo, a Samurai must be skilled in his main weapons, the Katana and the daikyu (great bow). He must be adept at horsemanship. Ideally, he must also be accomplished in the arts - calligraphy, music, Noh, poetry, and painting. A Samurai must strive for perfection in all things, since they reflect upon his honor, the honor of his daimyo, and the honor of his family.

San - An honorific title meaning mister, miss, etc.

San Bao (or San Pao) - "three treasures" The three treasures consist of Chi, Jing, and Shen.

San Shou (or San Da) - This is combat practice or sparring. In contemporary Wushu, it refers to competition sparring.

Sangdan - "Upper" or "upper level." A directional term used in Korean martial arts.

Sankukai - A style of Karate based on a combination of other systems, with an emphasis on escaping techniques and aikido-like defenses.

Sappo - A method of attacking vital points of the body in order to cause a coma or death.

Savate - French hand and foot fighting. A method of fighting to the knockout, once popular with the aristocracy of France.

Saya - The scabbard of a Samurai sword.

Seika Tanden - Lower abdomen.

Seiken - Forefist.

Seishin - "Mind," "soul," or "spirit."

Seito - "Pupil" or "student."

Seiza - "Correct sitting." A full kneeling position used in many martial arts when performing the ceremonial bow or receiving formal instruction.

Sempai - "Senior." Usually denotes any senior by age, rank, position or social standing.

Semphar - Mighest nation of the Hordelands or Endless Waste, is both eastern and western. It has grown fat on caravan trade, and is also a lush agricultural land, the envy of its neighbors. Reflecting many influences, it has in the past been part of the ancient Imaskari, Mulhorand, and Shou empires.

Sen I - "Fighting will" or "fighting spirit."

Sengoku - Warring States.

Sensei - Japanese martial arts teacher. The martial arts have always been indebted to the sensei, who spent the greater part of his life immersed in the forms of bujutsu. He tested the techniques and strategies of the various styles in actual combat, experimented with its weapons and devised new methods of coping with life-threatening situations. Above all, he taught his methods to others.

Little is known about the criteria adopted to evaluate a candidate for assignment as a sensai. It is assumed that the most naturally inclined and talented men from the members of a clan were appointed. In Chinese culture this appointment depended on merit, ascertained through a series of public examinations and upon constant supervision of a candidate's performance during his official career. In Japan, however, it became largely hereditary and consequently, was passed from the original teacher to his natural or adopted son. While the records of masters of arms in China abound with names of individual fighters known for their prowess in various systems, in Japan such records point primarily to schools and families of bujutsu experts who too considerable pride in recalling a long line of professional ancestors and whose written or oral instructions they tended to follow quite closely.

In Japan, a sharp distinction can be made between the teachers of the military class and those belonging to other classes. The sensei of the first category comprised the majority and their specialties included, in order of importance, archery, spearmanship, swordsmanship, general strategy and several subordinate styles of unarmed combat, such as Jujutsu and aikijutsu, used in combination with the traditional armed styles. The latter category formed the minority, being men who usually specialized in arts of combat that could be practiced without arousing the attention and concern of the military authorities. Among these treachers were specialists in instruments of various social classes: the staff, fan, iron pipes and chained blades.

Within his dojo a Sensei was in a position of supreme authority and unchallenged prestige. A student registered in a particular Ryu was principally a pupil of the instructor who accepted him as a disciple. Thus personal discipleship, rather than institutional membership, was the working relationship. It has been observed that even today one seldom witnesses a more pronounced form of respect, often virtually indistinguishable from actual subservience, than that accorded to a Japanese master of any martial art by his Japanese students. There have been many attempts to export and transplant this type of relationship to the West in certain Judo, Karate, aikido, Kendo schools, etc. More often than not, the results have been frustrating and disappointing to both the Japanese instructor and his Western students, since the necessary cultural promises simply are not present in the West.

Seppa - The washers above and below the Tsuba of a Samurai sword.

Seppuku - The ritual suicide of the samuari, uses a small sword to cut himself open.

Shangdu - An idyllic, beautiful place

Shaolin - "Young forest" or "small forest." A method of Kung Fu based on eight postures and five animal forms - dragon, snake, tiger, crane and leopard.

Shejak - Begin.

Shen - Mind, waking consciousness, waking thought, the Shen resides in the Heart.

Shenzhou - sacred vessel.

Shiai - A competitive match between Japanese martial artists.

Shibum - Demonstration.

Shihan - Master teacher.

Shihap - A bout or match.

Shikko - "Knee walking." A method of moving forward while keeping one knee constantly on the ground. Knee walking was originally a polite way of moving in a house, especially before a lord.

Shime - Choke.

Shimoseki - "Lower seat." In a traditional Japanese dojo, the area where students line up and face their instructor(s). Also known as "shimoza."

Shinai - A fencing practice sword, made of bamboo strips, and used in the practice of Kendo.

Shinken - "Real sword." An actual life or death encounter.

Shintai - "Stopped mind." A condition in which one remains exclusively defensive.

Shinto - Way of the Gods.

Shisei - "Posture" or "stance."

Shitahara - Lower abdomen.

Shito Ryu - A style of Karate founded by Kenwa Mabuni. Shito Ryu is one of the four major Japanese Karate systems.

Shizentai - "Natural position." An encompassing term for numerous Karate stances in which the body remains relaxed but alert.

Shogun - Supreme general of the emporer's army.

Shomen - "Front" or "forward." Often refers to the front wall of a dojo.

Shoshinsha - "Novice" or "beginner." Any unranked Japanese martial artist.

Shotei - Palm heel.

Shotokan - A popular Japanese Karate system founded by Gichin Funakoshi and influenced directly by the Okinawan style of Shuri-te.

Shou Lung - Or "Receiver of the Dragon," is the largest and most powerful empire of Kara-Tur. It is also the oldest state of Kara-Tur and has been in existence for over 1,200 years in one form or another. It has been ruled by an emperor for all of its history, except for a few periods of turmoil. The bureaucracy he heads is manned by thousands of officials, major and minor, chosen by a system of examinations given throughout the land.

Shou Lung is divided into 14 provinces, headed by a governor. The provinces are connected by a well-maintained network of roads and bridges, as well as Imperial Messengers. Dikes and dams are construced to control flooding, and coinage and paper money is minted and honored throughout the land.

Shuai Chiao - Along with Qin Na, this form of Chinese wrestling possibly influenced the formation of Japanese Jujutsu.

Shubaku - A system of empty-hand combat similar to Jujutsu which is considered the forerunner of Judo.

Shukenja - Wandering holy men. They act as teachers, adivsors, and healers to whomever needs their aid. They are respected by all, from peasant to Samurai, for their devotion and magical abilities. Their self-sacrifice, accepting a life of hardship and poverty, combined with devout religious beliefs, places the shukenja outside the caste system.

Shuko - A type of feudal age brass knuckle used by the Ninja's. Besides the small metal plate that slipped over the knuckles, the shuko had spikes extending from the palm so an enemy's face could be raked. It was also useful for gripping when climbing walls.

Shuri Te - One of the three original Okinawan Karate schools, which derived its name from the city where it originated.

Shuriken - A small throwing weapon. It comes in many sizes and shapes, the two most common being the star and the spike. Stars have three or more razor-edged points, ensuring that at least one will strike the victim when thrown. Spikes are large pins, tapering to sharp points. Easily concealed, they are thrown by hand and have a limited range.

Shushin - The chief referee in a Judo contest or a Japanese-style Karate match.

Shuto - "Knife hand" or "sword hand."

Si Bok - "Older uncle." A title given to a senior ranking instructor in some styles of Kung Fu.

Sifu - "Teacher" or "instructor."

Silat - See Pentjak.

Silk Road - The major east-west trade route across the Hordelands (or Endless Wastes, or Beastlands, or Plain of Horses). Relatively safe, it passes through Shou Lung, Khazari, and Semphar. It is shorter than the northern Spice Road, but travelers are often heavily taxed passing through its many cities.

Simsa - Test.

Sogi - Stance or position.

Sohei - Warrior priests, though more warrior than priest. They protect monasteries from attack and extend the monastaries' political claims. They have limited magical ability.

Sojutsu - "Art of the spear." An armed combative practiced by Japanese feudal warriors who used many types and styles of spears.

Sokodo - Speed.

Sokim - "Fake" or "feint."

Sokuto - Foot edge or knife foot.

Sondabak - Palm.

Sondung - Backhand.

Sonkal - Knife hand.

Sooryon - Training.

Soto - "Outside," "outer," or "exterior."

Sparring - A form of martial arts training in which two opponents face one another and simulate actual combat.

Spice Road - More northerly east-west trade route, is longer and less safe than the Silk Road. Does not have the Silk Road's taxes however, and is the only current route between northern Faerun and Kara-Tur.

Spirit Folk - Appear human, but their ancestry includes various spirits of nature. They are closely attuned to nature and natural forces. They are the descendants of humans and Nature Spirits, and are of three distinct races; bamboo, river, and sea Spirit Folk.

Unlike Korobokuru or even Hengeyokai, they appear completely human; indeed, many come close to the ideal of human beauty in society. In addition to being part of a human clan or family, they also have additional responsiblities to their spirit lord - the Lord of the Wood, the Lord of the Rivers, or the Lord of the Sea.

Staff - See Bo Stick.

Style - An expression that usually refers to the type of martial arts on practices. In Karate, the word style refers to the system or school in which one practices. Since there are hundreds of different types of Karate, each with different characteristics, the word "style" has become common among practitioners when referring to the specific kind of Karate they are engaged in.

Subak - A native Korean fighting system that enjoyed its widest popularity during the reign of King Uijong (A.D. 1147 - 1170).

Sudo - Knife hand.

Suki - "Opening." A gap in an opponent's defense or technique.

Sumo - A basic Japanese form of grappling in which the participants are of gigantic proportions. Victory is either achieved by forcing the opponent out of the ring, or by forcing him to touch the floor within the ring with any part of his body above the knee.

Sumotori - Sumo wrestlers.

Sun Tzu - Author of "The Art of War" over 2,000 years ago.

Sutemi - Sacrifice.


Tabot - A mountainous, cold land to the west of most of Kara-Tur. Deeply mysterious, it is virtually inaccesible; it is surrounded and permeated with dense bamboo forests, glaciers, deep valleys, and insurmountable peaks. Freezing winds, avalanches, mud-slides, dust storms, and yeti plague the would be travler. Its people are either holy men of the monastaries, or nomads, moving with their herds of yak.

Tachi - A Japanese long sword worn slung from a sword belt. Like the Katana, the tachi had a single-edged curved blade.

Tachi Rei - "Standing bow." A salutation common to numerous Japanese martial arts.

Tae Kwon Do - Way of smashing with feet and fists. A modern martial way and combative sport emphasizing high kicking and body punching. Also spelled Tae Qon Do and "taekwon-do."

Tai Chi Ch'uan - Soft, internal art usually practiced in slow, graceful forms. Modern versions used mostly to promote health.

Tai Otoshi - Leg drop. A commonly used Judo throw.

Tai Sabaki - "Body movement."

Taijutsu - "Body art." A generic term for a system of empty-hand combat.

Taisho - The captain of a team.

Taiso - Limbering, stretching and warm-up exercises performed by martial artists before a class.

Tanden - The body's center, two inches below the belly button.

Tang Soo Do - "Art of the Chinese hand." A Korean combative differing only slightly from Tae Kwon Do.

Tan Tien - "Sea of chi." The psychic center located just below the naval, which protects the center of gravity and produces a reservior of force upon which to draw. Also known as "tan den."

Tanto - A Japanese dagger with a blade eight to sixteen inches long and carried by the Samurai in addition to the Katana.

Tao - See Dao.

Tao Te Ching - The Way of Changes, a Chinese classic written by Lao Tzu around the 3rd century B.C. It is the fundamental text of Taoism.

Tashi - "Expert." An expert of Japanese martial arts who is of third- to fourth-degree black belt. All belts within this category, however, do not recieve this title.

Tatami - "Straw mat." A mat usually measuring three by six feet and three inches thick (with bound straw inside.)

Tate - Vertical fist.

Tatte - A command to stand up from a kneeling position.

Te - A Japanese word meaning hand. Old name for striking arts on Okinawa.

Tea Ceremony - A highly specialized art practiced by nobles in Kozakura and Wa. Although outwardly is appears tobe a simple if not trivial procedure, it is actually a skill that requires painstaking concentration. Every movement and step must bed performed with an exact amount of grace and precision, designed to create an atmosphere of serenity and calm. Similar to the Zakharan coffee ceremony, only much more elaborate.

Tengu - Race of birdlike humanoid creatures found in uninhabited mountain areas, though not far from settled lands. Many people believe they were the original inhabitants of the land before the arrival of humans. There are two types - the crow-headed tengu and the humanoid tengu.

Tensho - Okinawan Karate Kata employing dynamic tension and sanchin stance.

Tetsubishi - A four-pointed caltrop used by the Ninja's to slow down a persuer. No matter which way a tetsubishi landed one sharp point always protruded upward.

Tetsubo - "Iron staff." A weapon used by the Samurai from either a horse-mounted or ground position.

Three Sectional Staff - A Chinese weapon consisting of three rods connected by chain or rope.

Ti - See Belt.

Tjabang - An iron truncheon similar to the Okinawan Sai.

Tobu - An expression referring to the head area except the face.

Tomoe - "Circular" or "stomach."

Tonfa - "Handle." An old Okinawan farming tool developed as a weapon by Okinawan farmers.

Tong - Or secret society, which are everywhere in Shou Lung and to a lesser extent in T'u Lung. The secret society may be devoted to protecting the weak and fighting corruption, or may be devoted to crime and the underworld. Examples include the Many-Hued Peacock Society and the Society of the Purple Lotus.

Tori - Defender; Nage. The person who applies the technique.

Trigrams - Unique aspect of magic that permeates Shou Lung culture. It is a form of divination in which a handful of broken and unbroken chopsticks are thrown into a circle, and six are selected from the top. The resulting series of broken and unbroken lines are then compared to a matching trigram in the Book of Change to determine the meaning.

T'u Lung - "Earth Dragon" was a part of Shou Lung until a dispute over imperial succession 300 years ago. Claiming its own emperor, T'u Lung set up a separate imperial court. After many wars between the two states, the situation has stablized, though no love is lost.

In the wars of succession, the Emperor of T'u Lung was supported by powerful officials and nobles of the rebelling provinces, though this later proved to be a problem, as future T'u Lung emperors were unable to rule without the nobles' support. The nobles replaced the examination system with hereditary positions, and T'u Lung's public works in its six provinces subsequently declined.

Tsuba - The guard of a Samurai sword.

Tsuka - The handle of a Samurai sword.

Tsuki - Thrust.

Tsuzukete - "Continue." A term used by the referee in a Karate match, most frequently after a scoreless exchange.


Uchi - Strike.

Uchi Deshi - "Apprentice." An old Japanese practice where a student was apprenticed to a martial arts master in order to become an instructor in turn.

Ude - Forearm or arm.

Uechi Ryu - An Okinawan style of Karate founded by Kanbum Uechi. It is characterized by linear patterns and forceful breathing.

Uke - "Receiver." The partner upon whom the technique is executed.

Ukemi - Breakfalls used in Judo and other Japanese martial arts to avoid injury when bieng thrown. Ukemi has been called the key to Judo. Until the fear of falling is eliminated, the Judoka has not the confidence to attempt advanced feats. There are two types of ukemi in Judo: falls in which the arm strikes the mat; falls in which the body rolls like a ball.

In mastering ukemi, a student first learns to strike the mat with both arms and hands while falling backwards. The arms are held straight about 45 degrees from the body. The head is kept tucked upward to prevent injury. Next, breakfalls to the left and right side are practiced, in which only one hand and arm strike the mat. In a side breakfall, the leg and foot also strike the mat simultaneously with the arms. Finally, the rolling breakfall is perfected, in which the arms and feet strike the mat as the body rolls forward in a somersaulting motion.

Undong - Exercise.

Ura - "Reverse," "hidding," or "rear."

Uraken - Reverse fist.

Ura Zuki - Reverse punch.

Ushiro - "Back," "rear," or "behind."

Utsu - To strike or to hit.

Uye - "Up" or "upward."


Wa - "Accord." An ancient Japanese term for harmony, accord, and coordination.

Wa - An island that is unified military state. Although there is an emperor, the title is honorary and real power rests in the hands of the Shogun or "barbarian-suppressing general." The island is divided into fiefs, granted by the Shogun, and ruled individually by the daimyos.

Within Wa the status of the warrior, particularly the Samurai, has been raised above all others. Each daimyo maintains a household of samurai, each expected to give absolute and loyal service to their daimyo. Under the warriors come the peasants, than the craftsmen, and finally the merchants.

Wado Ryu - "Way of peace." A Japanese style of Karate developed from Jujutsu and earlier Karate styles. It is one of the four major Karate systems practiced in the world today.

Waki - "Side" or "flank."

Wakizashi - "Short sword." The shorter of the Samurai's two swords, with a blade of sixteen to twenty-three inches long.

Wako - The buccaneer and pirates of Kara-Tur. Far fiercer and more feared than their western counterparts.

Way, The - Its followers are known as Chung Tao, or Guides of the Way. More of a philosophy than a religion, its adherants believe that the true nature of the way is unknowable. The Way states that all things in the Celestial Universe affect and are affected by all others. There is no Good, Evil, Law, or Chaos - only the forces of the Universe, which may be manipulated as desired. The proper student of the Way recognizes this and strives to know the proper way in which to use these forces.

Way of Enlightenment - Virtually a Kozakuran version of the Path or Path of Enlightenment observed in Shou Lung. This well-organized religion draws lessons from the life and speeches of its great teacher in an effort to guide men to spiritual perfection. It is divided into three main schools; Toro-dai (most popular, is very much myticism), Kanchai (worshippers try to influence an invisible hierarchy of spirits), and Konjo (highly esoteric, uses complex methods of meditation and contemplation).

Waza - Technique.

Wing Chun - "Beautiful springtime." A form of Chinese Kung Fu that centers around strong linear punches and centerline movement.

Wu Jen - Sorcerors and magicians. They usually live as hermits in remote areas, and are greatly feared and respected for their powers.

Since wu jen draw their power from supernatural sources, they must operate under special taboos, taboos of which is the wu jen violates he or she suffers the loss of spells, illness, and other evil events. A taboo could be not eating meat, not wearing cloth of a certain color, or not touching dead bodies.

Wushu - "War arts." A highly gymnastic, traditional sport-like artform characterized by several styles.


Yakuza - Thugs and extortionists, but they are also peacekeepers and guardians of the common man. Structured bands of Yakuza collect tribute from their local merchants in exchange for protection. Unlike western thieves, Yakuza are much more organized and less apt to be independent. Yakuaza groups (kumi) follow a family head (oyabun). Family honor is observed.

Also unlike thieves, Yakuza have incredible powers of gathering information, each Yakuza maintaing lists of contacts, who provide eithier information or aid. At higher levels Yakuza have contacs over entire provinces.

Yari - Spear.

Yehimal - Mighest mountain range on all of Toril, it and the Jumpa River gorge serve to separate most of Kara-Tur from either the Hordelands or Faerun. A land of glaciers and yetis, it has peaks up 24,000 feet in height. Its southern extension, the A-Ling Shan, separates the ancient Raurin desert from the Kara-Tur land of the Katakoro Plateau. Its northern edge is known as Kun-Yen Shan, and is fabled to hold valleys of exiles or terrible monsters.

Yikwon - Backfist.

Yin-Yang - Two opposite forces that exist in harmony, complement each other and are dependent on each other. Yin is characterized as the negative force of darkness, coldness and empiness; yang as the positive force of light, warmth and fullness. Yin-yang represents the two primal, opposite forces: hard and soft, masculine and feminine. The binary list is endless.

There are two yin-yang symbols which represent both the philosophy and the martial arts aspect of Kung Fu: the spiral and the double fish.

Both configurations are enclosed in a circle, which is indicative of the cyclical evolution in nature. The transmutation of two opposites is represented by the dark area blending into the white. Harmony between these opposite attributes is shown by the equality of the two areas. The white dot in the dark area and the dark dot in the white area of the double fish configuration show the interdependency of the two. Obviously these same principles are applicable to the spiral configuration, but its origin is not as clear. However, it is generally believed that it did exist befor the double fish diagram and was derived from the I-Ching. During Kung Fu's evolution, the spiral configuration was adopted by the intellectuals and scholars and the double fish configuration became synonymous with the commoners.

The Pugilist who understands the yin-yang principles, it is said, has unlimited resources in the application of his techniques.

Yo - The hard, male, light, or positive principle of nature.

Yojimbo - "Bodyguard." The name given to a Ronin who hired themselves out as professional bodyguards.

Yoko - "Side" or "lateral."

Yoko Aruki - One of the unique Ninja's walking techniques to move stealthily through woods or narrow areas.

Yok Sudo - Ridge hand.

Yonsok - Combination.

Yubi - Finger.

Yurt - Portable tents, resembling round domes when set up, that are the center of Hordeland nomads' lives.


Zanshin - State of total awareness cultivated in all martial arts. Zanshin is not a state achieved though analysis, but rather through experience and instinct. By an intense and intuitive use of the senses some exponents seem to achieve a stat of awareness that almost suggests a sixth sense. It produces and intriguing calmness of mind and an apparent detachment even in threatening situations, when fear or anger might seem a more natural reaction. Through Zanshin the Japanese bushi achieved the proper mental and physical attitude with which to dominate his adversary. The Japanese refer to Zanshin as an all-seeing "mind like the moon."

Zazen - "Sitting meditation." The meditative posture and exercise of the Zen school.

Zen - Discipline that stresses meditation and direct transmission of teachings from master to student. Zen, as it is know to Japan, was introduced there by Buddhist Monks, returning from China in the 13th century. Attracted by its austerity, many Samurai sought to perfect themselves in its study. They hoped in this way to face battle and even death without expressing fear.

The aim of Zen is complete control of the mind - to attain a state of enlightenment and a sense of detachment from the physical world. This is achieved by constant meditation and strict discipline.

It is generally claimed the Zen was the foundation of martial arts in fudal Japan, that it provided the doctrine of bujutsu with a theory and a philosophy and that it provided the doctrine of bujutsu with a theory and philosophy, and that it provided the martial artist with proper disciplines for developing a strong character and personality. A man throughly versed in the techniques of concentration and meditation might achieve complete indifference to physical discomfort, pain and eventually even death. It is no wonder, then, that Japanese warriors, who were professionally fascinated by the various ways of meeting death, came to believe that Zen masters made "sport of death."

The most important contribution of Japanese Zen to the martial arts was its insistence upon intuition, believed by Zen masters to be the most direct way of reaching truth. Intuition was the quality the feudal warrior needed to develop most particularly to respond quickly to the prompting of a dangerous situation.

Finally, Zen seems to have also influenced the style of recording the techniques of the various Ryu (schools). The task of writing them, of preserving and guarding them, was generally assigned to a Zen priest residing in a nearby monastery, when not performed by the master of the school himself

In the relation to moral conduct, however, Zen had little or nothing to add to the code of loyality and obedience that ruled the life of a Samurai. Instead, it sustained them morally and philosophically. Morally, because Zen teaches one not to look backward once the course is decided upon; and philosophically, because it treats life and death indifferently.

Zenshin - The entire human body.

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Last Updated Sat Aug 11, 2007