Daidoji Harriers

Daidoji Harriers

The Daidoji Harriers were a highly secretive, small group of elite warriors of the Crane Clan. Families outside of the Crane were only vaguely aware of the Harriers' existence, and even few within the Crane knew exactly what they did.

Training Edit

Harriers were trained in a secret dojo at Shiro Giji. [1] The students took to calling themselves ‘Harriers’ to distinguish their methods from those of the more honorable Daidoji Scouts. [2] The Harriers had a secret language of hand signals and body movements that they used to communicate with one another in the field. [3]

Purpose Edit

The Harriers mainly served as scouts, saboteurs, and surveillance experts and were expected to be able negate the advantage of fifty or more enemy soldiers. They were also used as spies and bodyguards off of the battle field. They were sometimes thought of as "the ninja of the Crane", although they acted in a more honourable way, they did not use poison for instance and targeted only military objectives or intruders. Their techniques were utilized only in battle, and they did not target innocents or bystanders. That said, an armed and armored enemy was fair game to a Harrier, even if the enemy didn't see the attack coming. The Harriers willingly sacrificed their honor and their lives in order to protect the Crane. [citation needed] While their tactics rarely reduced the enemy numbers, they were effective in reducing enemy morale before a battle. [4]

Gaijin Pepper Edit

The Daidoji family's close relationship with the gaijin Garen Hawthorne allowed them to gain access to gaijin pepper, [5] one of the most infamous techniques they used, which was first seen on the battlefield during the Lion defeat in the Battle at Osari Plains. [6] After the death of Hantei Yugozohime in 442 its use was forbidden by Imperial edict, [7] but the Harriers secretely still produced, stored, and used it. It led to the disbanding order issued by the Crane Clan Champion Doji Domotai in 1168 [1] and their total destruction in 1169. [8]

Famous Harrier Edit

Arguably, the most famous Harrier was Daidoji Uji, former daimyo of the Daidoji family. As with many of the Daidoji and their Harriers, the full impact of what Uji had done to protect and preserve the Crane would never be known. So it was with the Daidoji Harriers.

But another is Daidoji Takihiro also known as the Kolat Harrier due to his recruitment into the Kolat conspiracy and the fact that he was one of dedicated member of the Harriers who would use dishonorable or illegal methods to not only defend the Crane Clan but also advance his family's status. [9]

Disbanded Edit

The most dishonourable thing ever practiced by the Harriers was the use of gaijin pepper (against the express interdiction from the Emperor). This was found out by Dragon samurai. The information led Togashi Satsu to wage a war against the Crane. Doji Domotai, young daimyo of the Crane Clan, learned about it too and ended the war by disbanding the Harriers in 1168, once and for all. [1] Domotai was aware that not all the Harrier activities had been finished, and sent Daidoji Fumisato in her steward. He journeyed to Shiro Giji to end the illegal practices there, killing any who resisted. [8]

The Last Harrier Edit

The last Harrier, Daidoji Shihei, Hatamoto of the Daidoji Daimyo, Daidoji Kikaze, was hunted down and killed by his lord. [10]

Known Daidoji Harrier Techniques Edit

See also Edit

External Links Edit


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Imbalances, by Nancy Sauer
  2. Imperial Histories, p. 179
  3. Way of the Ninja, p. 69
  4. Clan War: Crane Army Expansion, p. 57
  5. Imperial Histories, p. 81
  6. Way of the Crane, p. 13
  7. Complete Exotic Arms Guide, p. 44
  8. 8.0 8.1 Disavowed, by Nancy Sauer
  9. The Great Clans, p. 61
  10. Steel, by Nancy Sauer

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