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Ikoma Bard

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Ikoma Omidasu

The Ikoma Bard, or Omoidasu, served an important role in the Lion Clan - he was the historian, law keeper, and the Clan's heart, being the only class allowed to display emotion publically. [1]

School Edit

The omoidasu were taught in the Open Hand of the Lion [2] and the Honor's Sacrifice Dojo. [3]

The Warrior Edit

As Ikoma, the Omoidasu were warriors first. [1]

The Rememberer Edit

The Omoidasu served to remember the past, to honor the ancestors, and to keep their memories keen and awake - to record any event they may stumble across, for, as Ikoma himself once said "Mankind has only one failing, and it's that we forget." [4]

The Law-Keeper Edit

As the living memory of the Lion Clan, the Omoidasu are also its law-keepers. They are typically found beside Akodo or Matsu reminding them of the laws in relation to their actions, and the consequences. They are regarded as the keepers of bushido and the conscience of the clan. Nearly every Lion daimyo has an Ikoma advisor, even the Matsu. [4]

The Mourner Edit

As bushido forbade a samurai from expressing any emotion, the last role an Omoidasu played was that of the Mourner. Whenever a Lion samurai was overcome by a tragedy, the Omoidasu was there to express the emotion the samurai cannot. He cried, screamed and cursed those he would wreak vengeance upon, in the name of the Lion who must keep his face. [4]

A Bard's Training Edit

Omoidasu 2

An Omidasu

Beginning at a young age, generally around 6 or 7, the apprentice bard begins learning the history of Rokugan and his Clan. By the age of 12, he is expected to be able to recite the lineage of at least three families. If he fails this test, he is shunted into the vast libraries, becoming a librarian, a vastly different role to that of the historian. Those who pass the test are allowed to progress in their training. [5]

One of Ikoma's most important lesson was "Man forgets, but history remembers," and most of his lessons to Akodo revolved around this principle. Therefore, in addition to learning the history and laws of the Empire, the bard must learn several epics - dramas depicting the Lion's most famous deeds, and their lessons. [5]

Many Ikoma bards serve the Lion daimyos, but some take to wandering Rokugan. These bards return to the school once a year to tell the stories they have gathered and add them to the histories. Each bard has his own set of scrolls within the library, and all of the stories he gathers are recorded upon them. This practice makes searching the libraries a time-consuming process; as to find any story, a searcher must first discover the name of the bard who first told it, then he much scour the shelves in search of that particular bard's scrolls.[5]

Known Techniques Edit

Ikoma Omoidasu 2

An Ikoma Omoidasu

See also Edit

External Links Edit


  1. 1.0 1.1 Way of the Lion, p. 40
  2. Secrets of the Lion, p. 43
  3. Way of the Ninja, p. 74
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Way of the Lion, p. 41
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Way of the Lion, p. 42

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