Yamaoka Tesshu

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Tesshû's grave at Zenshô-an, in the Yanaka area of Tokyo
  • Birth: 1836
  • Death: 1888
  • Titles: Bakufu Kenjutsu Sewayaku, Viscount
  • Other name: Ono Tetsutaro
  • Japanese: 山岡鉄舟 (Yamaoka Tesshu) 山岡鉄太郎高歩 (Yamaoka Tetsutaro Takayuki)

Back Ground

Ono Tetsutaro was born as a son of Okura Bugyo Ono Tomoemon and later he was adopted to Hatamoto Yamaoka family. He learned Hokushin Itto Ryu from Chiba Shusaku in Kobusho and became the Kobusho Kenjutsu Sewayaku.


1857, he formed Torao Party with Kiyokawa Hachiro.

1863, he and Kiyokawa were appointed to be directors of the Roshigumi but Kiyokawa suddenly changed the purpose of the Roshigumi right after when they arrived Kyoto and made all but 24 people return to Edo. In April, Kiyokawa was assassinated and Yamaoka was put in disciplinary confinement. Same time, he met Asari Matashichiro and learned Itto Ryu. 1868/3/9, he visited Saigo Takamori in Sunpu by an order of Tokugawa Yoshinobu, and succeeded to reach the agreement about a basic condition of Edo surrender.


After the Meiji Restoration, he moved to Shizuoka accompanying Tokugawa Iesato.

1872, he became a chamberlain of Emperor Meiji, it was requested by Saigo Takamori. While serving for the Imperial Court, he founded Itto Shoden Muto Ryu Kenjutsu.

1888, he died of Stomach cancer. His grave is in Zensho-an, the temple was established by himself to condole people who died for the Meiji Restoration in 1883.

Yamaoka Tesshu in Fiction


  • Shunpu Muto Ryu (春風無刀流) Tsumoto Yo
  • Shunpu wo Kiru (春風を斬る) Kamiwatari Ryohei

Research Books

  • Kenzenwa (剣禅話) Yamaoka Tesshu
  • Tesshu Zuikan Roku (鉄舟随感録) Yamaoka Tesshu, Katsu Kaishu
  • Yamaoka Tesshu (山岡鉄舟) Kojima Hidenori
  • Yamaoka Tesshu, Bakumatsu Ishin no Shigotonin (山岡鉄舟 幕末・維新の仕事人) Sato Hiroshi
  • Yamaoka Tesshu no Bushido (山岡鉄舟の武士道) Katsube Masanaga


  • Shinsengumi Taishi Den (新選組隊士伝) Gakken
  • J-wikipedia Yamaoka Tesshu
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