Armor Society Meeting May 2017 Report
Report of the May 2017 meeting at the NKBKHK headquarters
Held on May 14 in the meeting room of the Mizuinari-jinja and attended by 26 members and non-members. Four of our members brought their haidate and so we had 29 pieces on display that day and so the attendees hat the opportunity to study hands-on various haidate interpretations, e.g. ita-haidate (板佩楯), karutagane-haidate (骨牌金佩楯), shino-haidate (篠佩楯), kawara-haidate (瓦佩楯), hôdô-haidate (宝幢佩楯), umayoroizane-haidate (馬鎧札佩楯), kusari-haidate (鎖佩楯), and iyo-haidate (伊予佩楯), dating from the Momoyama to the Edo period.
Executive director of your association, Mr. Kanno Shigeo (菅野茂雄), had brought eight items to the meeting and explained via two of them all the major elements of haidate, also pointing out the importance of the tsurio (吊緒) cord, i.e. being indispensable for wearing haidate, and that the omeri (於女里), which is installed at the lower edge of the ichimonjigawa (一文字革), is necessary to protect the ieji. Apart from that, Mr. Kanno explained on the basis of his long-term participation of the Sôma-Nomaoi, the Samurai Horsemen Festival, the way to hold the whip and how to insert the whip into the haidate. Furthermore, Mr. Kanno annotated that surprisingly few know about how haidate are supposed to be worn properly and pointed out several ways of how to put on haidate wrongly, accompanied by a demonstration of how haidate are today put on in Sôma where the above mentioned festival takes place.
Apart from that, Mr. Kanno explained the basic differences between Momoyama and Edo period haidate.
Mr. Kanno was followed by our vice president, Mr. Matsumoto Kunihiko, who explained in an easy to understand way all the different haidate interpretations, also stressing that the haidate are an important protective element as the thighs contain major blood vessels. Also Mr. Matsumoto pointed out that unlike kabuto or dô, haidate were exposed to more permanent stress and were therefore considered as consumable items and that this is the reason why so few old haidate are extant.
(Members of the society will get some more pictures of this meeting in their mailbox in the coming days)