Jisai Kanemaki
Japanese Name: 鐘巻殿
Romanized Name: Kanemaki Jisai
First Appearance:
Strong points: Fatherly love, Chujo-ryu style master

Jisai Kanemaki (鐘巻殿) is the master of the Chujo-ryu sword style, teacher of Ittousai Itou, and the adoptive father of Kojiro Sasaki.


Prior to taking care of Kojiro, Jisai appeared to have been a loner hermit that largely stayed to himself. Reminisciences of his past describes him as self-centered to the point of forgetting what his students look like (with the exception of his strongest student, Ittousai) and being unaware of much of the outside world. For many years after receiving Kojiro, he failed to realize the child's deafness until told personally by Ittousai despite the latter and Takuan being able to discern Kojiro's deafness moments after seeing him. In his youth, Jisai was also shown to have been arrogant and perhaps resentful if his students attempted to leave him too soon as he became upset after Ittousai claimed to have mastered the Chujo-ryu style after five years. He is suggested to have been powerful and had said that he thought of himself was 'invincible', but Ittousai had succeeded in defeating him and ending his life with the sword in the process.

After receiving Kojiro, Jisai seems to become a caring father willing to undergo humiliation and risk to protect and properly raise Kojiro. Raising Kojiro has the result of reviving his fighting spirit and turned him back into a teacher of the Chujo-ryu.


Upon introduction, Jisai is shown to be a downtrodden hermit living in a shack. He is made fun of by the local children and described as a 'crackpot' by adults. Both the villagers and Jisai believed that death was on the horizon for him.
Jisai with infant kojiro

Jisai with infant Kojiro

However, he had received a letter from his former student, Sakeyasu Sasaki, who informs him that he is preparing to die as the castle of his master is expected to fall. He requests that Jisai takes care of his son in his stead, but the child fails to appear after several days making Jisai assume the boy had not made the journey. As he sits on a rock watching the ocean, however, a storm comes and washes a dead woman ashore. Looking out, Jisai sees a boat carrying an infant, but it is immediately flipped and the child falls in. Realizing it was Kojiro, Jisai jumps in and succeeds in rescuing the infant.

On the beach, Jisai buries the dead woman and picks up Kojiro. He seems to connect with the child and, later, finds the child's keepsake sword from his parents. In the end, Jisai decides he can live a little longer.

The two begin their lives together. Jisai occasionally has moments where he loses hope and tries to abandon Kojiro, but later comes back to retrieve the child. Eventually, the years passes and Jisai is visited by his former student, Ittousai, who confirms that Jisai had given up the sword. Jisai did not appreciate the visit and demanded Ittousai leave immediately.
Jisai protects kojiro

Jisai promising to protect Kojiro

Before leaving, Ittousai reveals to Jisai that Kojiro is deaf. Jisai takes Kojiro out to test the truth of it and sees that it is true. In despair, he practices the sword to relieve his emotions and, here, he catches his first glimpse of Kojiro's inclination to the sword. Despite it, Jisai insists that Kojiro should stay away from the sword because he lost his parents to war.

Realizing Kojiro's disability and having to rescue him from almost drowning again, Jisai makes a vow to protect Kojiro.

In the following years, Jisai tries to teach Kojiro written language and even tries to get him to learn some words. Wanting to teach Kojiro to be a good man but realizing he needed an income to do so, Jisai tries to get a job. After failing, he tries to go back to the only thing he's ever been good at and sets up a school to teach Chujo-ryu. However, this also proves to be a failure as he is out of shape and the villagers believe he is out to swindle them.

The years passes and, eventually, Jisai is approached by the village elder to kill a feared swordsman, Fudo Yugetsusai, who has been reigning as the savior of the village and demanding tributes of food/young girls. Unable to take his demands any longer, the villagers approaches Jisai hoping he could kill him or at least the two could kill each other. A large reward is offered which Jisai finds appealing because he and Kojiro has been subsisting largely on begging, but Jisai ultimately refuses due to not being in fighting condition.

This changes when the family that has helped him out a great deal throughout the years pleads for his help as Fudo is targetting their daughter. He agrees because Kojiro is important to him too and the thought that Fudo would take away their daughter repulses him. He holds a gathering with the villagers saying he agrees to kill Fudo that night but his condition is
Jisai kills fudo

Jisai succeeds in killing Fudo

that, should he fail, they must jump in to take down Fudo. The villagers agrees but also deceptively plans to abandon the fight should Jisai fall.

On the way to the fight, Jisai stops repeatedly due to overwhelming fear. However, when he sees fire and hear Kojiro's voice from the direction of Fudo, he quickly rushes towards the fight to take on Fudo. Pushing Kojiro out of the way, Jisai and Fudo attacks each other. In the process, Jisai gets his right arm cut deeply to the point that he would not be able to use it correctly again, but ultimately succeeds in taking Fudo down.

Afterwards, Jisai is given treatment by the villagers as they celebrate the death of Fudo. Upon recovery, Jisai is offered the position of being the village's new savior, but turns it down as he realizes the village does not truly appreciate him. At last, with the respect he got after taking down Fudo, Jisai's teaching school takes off. Kojiro begins to request that Jisai teaches him swordsmanship, but while Jisai refuses, he still spars with Kojiro and teaches the boy the ability to fight in the process.

Many years later, Jisai receives another visit from Ittousai. This time, his former student is much more persistent and eventually gouges Kojiro into fighting Denshichiro and several other men where he easily wins. When Kojiro is brought back and Jisai is informed of what transpired, he realizes he can no longer measure Kojiro's potential, and states that it is time for Kojiro to leave him.
Jisai happy

Jisai happy

After Kojiro departs with Ittousai, Jisai spends some time pondering, but eventually climbs a high point to stare out at the ocean. He declares his life dedicated to the sword was all worth it because he managed to leave behind a great swordsman like Kojiro. Eventually, his last major act is to write out a certificate of swordsmanship for Kojiro and sets Tenki out to give it to his old friend.

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