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Commoners in Feudal Japan

WillyT

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Hello,

This is my second topic here. My first was in regards to naming a pan-Asian combat organization (similar to the SCA or boffer sports). We are developing a system for non-combatant progression. I was curious if anyone could offer support -or- give me a good link to terms for commoners in Feudal Japan.

I'm aiming for a 3-5 levels of progression for civilian status.

Pretty much a Japanese version of this:

Serf - Freeman - Noble...

I appreciate your help!

Edit: I am avoiding post-European titles related to peerage.
 

Toritoribe

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Serf
小作人 kosakunin, 小作民 kosakumin, 小作農 kosakunou

Freeman
町人 chounin

Noble
公家 Kuge
 

thomas

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Wouldn't it be correct to assume that commoners exclude nobility (kuge) and even the samurai class?

Perhaps
  • serf
  • merchant
  • peasant
  • freeman
 

Toritoribe

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Yeah, I, too, wondered why "noble" was listed there.
As for "kosakunin/kosakumin/kosakunou", they were farmers who didn't have their own land, so it's more likely "peasant". The correct translation of "serf" is 農奴 "noudo", but 農奴 didn't exist in Japanese history, therefore I used "kosakunin/kosakumin/kosakunou" instead.
 

WillyT

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Yes, I should have used a better example, I wasn't looking for noble - just showing a progression example.

I currently have:

Chomin
Nomin
Heimin
Eta

If my humble knowledge of Japanese history is correct -I'm a Mediterranean/Antiquity guy- then Nomin were actually higher than Chomin because the economy was based off koku. I listed Chomin above because it suits my needs (no reason to favor farming, it does nothing for my org - but the Chomin produce product).

Are the terms I'm using accurate?
 

WillyT

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Heimin vs. Hinin
I've seen both used somewhat interchangeably; then sometimes compared.

Eg: Heimin being used to describe a common citizen and Hinin being used to describe an outcast/subhuman/non-human, etc.

Is my example correct? Or are they interchangeable?
 

Toritoribe

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I merged your threads since those are the same topic.

"Heimin" means commoners, so both "Chomin" and "Nomin" belong to "Heimin".
"Eta" and "Hinin" are considered discriminatory terms. I don't recommend using it (and those two words are not interchangeable, of course).
 

WillyT

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Thank you very much for clarifying!
 
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