Melee Weapons
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Rating: 3.1667
Condition: Normal
ID: 3566


January 9, 2007, 4:44 pm

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Translated roughly as “Rope weight,” this weapon has evolved from a tool used by fisherman for anchoring to trees or hauling their boat through the shallows.

This weapon appears in forms ranging from a simple fisherman’s tool, often just a rock or heavy knot (a monkey’s fist or something similar) at one end, and a loop, ring, or bar to hold onto at the other end; to the weapon it’s used as in modern day Asian martial arts, consisting of a weighted end connected to a spike by a strong, fine chain.  The weapon is roughly 6-9 feet long.

This weapon, due to it’s origins as a fisherman’s tool, would qualify as a peasant’s weapon, and because of this, one could hide it’s purpose as a weapon if one was entering certain “weaponless” towns or cities, or if one was going before nobility.  Of course, in the later case, one might have to figure out a way to disguise the Surujin as jewelry.

In combat one can use the weighted end to attack the opponent directly, or use it to entangle or ensnare the opponent and use the other end to either punch or stab at the now disabled opponent.  One of the advantages of using a long chain/rope weapon such as this is that, if the attack is blocked by a sword or shield, the weapon will still continue it’s motion and either wrap itself up around the item used to block, or hit the person regardless of the obstacle.

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Comments ( 11 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Cheka Man
January 9, 2007, 17:57
A very useful item.
Voted Murometz
January 9, 2007, 21:03
not bad. I'm actually a fan of peasant weapons. Nifty, but a bit sparse in "feel".
Voted CaptainPenguin
January 10, 2007, 0:17
I love it!
Strange weapons rule
Siren no Orakio
January 10, 2007, 0:29
This is known in kobudo arts as 'Manriki', with the 'manriki gusari' being the double-weighted version. is the second.
Voted MoonHunter
January 10, 2007, 2:23
Nice addition to the codice. It is this variation of a peasants weapon that will come up in many games.
Voted Scrasamax
January 10, 2007, 3:29
I like the fact that it came from the fisherman rather than from farmers, which tend to be the more traditional source for peasant weaponry.
Voted valadaar
January 10, 2007, 10:26
Useful and simple weapon.

Another use for Iron Spikes... :)
January 11, 2007, 15:34
Oh yah. 103 uses
Voted Kuseru Satsujin
June 1, 2008, 9:00
Where to begin? Let's start with the whole 'peasant weapon' thing. After years of research into Japanese and Okinawan weapons, I've learned to take any claims of "peasant" origin with a LARGE grain of salt, especially where Okinawan weapons are concerned. Like the ninja, there are a great number of myths associated with kobudo weaponry. The first being that peasants were improvising weapons from common tools because they couldn't carry weapons (a myth also appearing in Japan). It was the warrior caste (Pechin) of Okinawa who improvised tools for use as weapons (primarily due to the restrictions placed on them by the Satsuma after the 1609 invasion).
Don't get me wrong, there are weapons derived from "peasant" tools. However, research shows that these generally derive from the same sort of tools you'd find turned into weapons in Europe; flails, axes, hatchets, scythes, and the like. The tonfa is pretty much the only Okinawan weapon, derived from a tool, which doesn't exactly have a classical European counterpart (excepting the use of improvised objects as weaponry). So when you come across claims of a weapon being derived from "peasant tools" be sure to triple check the sources on it. (As a side note, for the suruchin alone, I've seen three different "origin" stories; the fishermen one, one where they're derived from tools used to hold together bits of roofing, and another that states they were used as far back as the Stone Age to fight off wild beasts. Given the simplicity in design of the weapon, any or none of those could be valid.)

Next we come to the chain/rope issue. The suruchin is a rope weapon. Later exposure to Japanese weaponry introduced chain weaponry to Okinawa where local practitioners of kobudo adopted the weaponry and dubbed them "suruchin", but they're still really not the same weapon. The two types of chain suruchin, cho suruchin and naga suruchin, are actually a tamagusari and manriki-gusari. Judging by the wording used in the description posted, the chain entry was pulled from Wikipedia. Don't get me wrong, Wiki can be a wonderful source of information, but only if used as a starting place in your research.

Technical stuff. The actual lengths given for the suruchin are 3, 5, 6, and 7 shaku (11.930542 inches, usually people just convert to one foot for ease of reference). For the metric folks, these lengths are 90 cm, 150cm, 180cm, and 240cm.

Note: Yes, I use the 'suruchin' spelling rather than 'surujin,' lots of research shows that most Japanese and Okinawan weapons have generally at least half a dozen alternate spelling/names for the same weapon. The "suru" part of the name is derived from the plant fiber, surukaa, from which the rope was originally made. Chin/jin is supposedly derived from the term for the paperweight used to hold down rice paper (according to Wiki at least, if it's true, it would derive from the character (not sure if that will show well here) 'chin'; 'shizu' (in okinawan), an archaic Buddhist term for a weight).

So, overall, my main suggestion is simply to make sure you research multiple sources on stuff like this. Other than that issue (which happens to everyone, even me), it was a good submission.
Voted Kassy
July 4, 2012, 8:34
I agree with Muro.

While the idea is a neat one, I feel that more could be done to 'flesh' this out.

Voted axlerowes
April 1, 2013, 19:49
If you are going to discuss real world facts, toss in some references.

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       By: CaptainPenguin

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