Having spread his empire through southern China and Korea, Kublai Khan set Japan as his next conquest. After his demands for subjugation were unanswered, Kublai sent an invasion force which met with some success pushing the samurai armies into retreat.  Demands for surrender were met with the beheading of the emissaries. A second massive invasion was staged in 1281 employing about 4400 ships and 142,000 troops. Blessed by devastating storms, the Japanese survived the invasion capturing or killing tens of thousands of the invaders. Samurai armor posed a new problem for the Mongols as it was quite able to absorb the impact of an arrow with its flexible and resilient plates joined by lace. The Mongol response was to develop arrowheads that would not impale the armor but glance to the lacing which is cut, allowing penetration. See Nicolle fig.769d-769n for examples.  This example, one of five from our own collection, accords with Nicolle 769k. It is 4 1/8” length in professionally conserved excavated condition.

Item ID: A4575

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