An onna bugeisha (女武芸者) was a female of the buke class in feudal Japan who was trained in the use of weapons.[1] The term consists of the word onna ("woman") and the word bugeisha ("warrior").

Use of the term "female samurai" is technically a misnomer. "Samurai" is a gender-specific term in Japanese, and was only used for certain males of the buke class. Likewise, "female bushi" or "onna bushi" is also incorrect as "bushi" is a gender-specific masculine term.

A woman of the buke class may be called "buke no onna," meaning simply "female of the buke class." This term "buke no onna" does not denote that the female in question has had any training in any martial arts. It only describes the woman's family background.

See alsoEdit


  1. Female Samurai Information
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