Servant of the Shogun: Being the True Story of William Adams, Pilot and Samurai, the First Englishman in Japan

Richard Tames, Author St. Martin's Press $29.95 (132p) ISBN 978-0-312-01603-6
Having reached Japan in 1600 after a perilous journey, this enterprising young Englishman entered an extraordinary career as a powerful shogun's aid (whose adventures served as a model for the hero of James Clavell's bestseller Shogun and TV miniseries). Based on Adams's diaries and journals and letters of Japanese, English and other contemporary Europeans, Tames, a staff member at the University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies, depicts the era's unrest caused by Japanese factional wars, rivalry between Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch and English traders, and feuding Jesuit and Franciscan missionaries. As interpreter and diplomat at court, Adams successfully represented the interests of the East India Company in the face of Japanese ambivalence toward foreigners. He remained in Japan until his death in 1620, leaving an estate divided between two wivesone in England and one in Japanand their offspring. (April)
Reviewed on: 03/01/1988
Release date: 03/01/1988
Paperback - 144 pages - 978-0-904404-39-5
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