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Royal Armouries Museum

Monarchs – Tokugawa Ieyasu

At the court of the Shogun
22nd June - 10:00 am - 23rd June - 5:00 pm

It’s 1605. The great Shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu, is about to retire. Having unified Japan, the Shogun is considering international relations. Can Will Adams, his most trusted European adviser, convince him of the merits of Britain? Will you be able to persuade the potentate to strike a deal with you? Come and meet the monarch.

Daily programme for Saturday and Sunday

Mini monarchs

Storytelling for under 5s. Fun-packed tales of kings and queens.

Land of the Rising Sun — Meet the Shogun

Tokugawa Ieyasu will grant you an audience. He will be accompanied by his courtier the explorer Will Adams, the first Englishman to reach Japan. Find out about the Japanese court and the Shogun’s fascinating life.

Junior Samurai sword school

Little warriors can learn the traditional way of the Samurai. Our sensei and his student will teach the honour code and martial traditions used by the Japanese warrior class. Suitable for ages 5 – 13 (with parental supervision)

Price: £3

Battō-jutsu — martial arts demonstration

Learn how the legendary Japanese Samurai ‘fast draw’ sword attack was developed.

Have-a-go martial arts

Price: £3

Get a real practical introductory lesson into the Samurai martial art of Katori. Watch the experts demonstrate martial arts techniques then get hands on and learn with them. Suitable for ages 14+ years.

Royal-themed craft activities

Explore the world of kings and queens and get hands on in our craft sessions. Suitable for ages 3+ years with adult supervision.

Price: Free (suggested donation £3)

East meets West — dramatic presentation

Join the Shogun and his most trusted adviser Will Adams as they compare and contrast European and Japanese culture over Japanese tea and English beer.

Arming the Samurai — demonstration

Discover how Japanese armour is worn as our samurai is armed for battle.

The road to power — dramatic presentation

Tokugawa Ieyasu and Will Adams discuss how the Shogun came to power and the parallels with the English Tudor dynasty.

Japanese calligraphy — demonstration

Have your name written using traditional Japanese calligraphy.

Origami — have-a-go sessions

Have a go at making a Kabuto helmet using the tradition Japanese art of paper folding.

Arts of Mars — dramatic presentation

The Shogun and Adams compare the art of war in Europe and Japan, the katana vs the long sword and rapier, and Adams demonstrates the sword skills he has learned whilst living in Japan.

Japanese collection guided tour

3.45 pm

Discover the arms and armour of Japan’s legendary warrior elite.

Information correct at time of publishing. Royal Armouries reserves the right to alter the programme without prior notification.

This event is supported by The Japan Society and The Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation.

The Japan SocietyThe Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation





Come and meet some of the most remarkable rulers from across the globe as we explore their impact on history through our world class collection.