Yamaoka Tesshu 山岡鉄舟

Yamaoka Tesshu 山岡 鉄舟(1836-1888) was an outstanding sword master in the Late Tokugawa Shogunate and the Meiji era, often considered to be the last of the great swordsmen of Japanese martial history. He was also a noted Zen master and an accomplished calligrapher.

Tesshu played an important role in the Meiji Restoration. In 1968, Katsu Kaishu 海舟 sent Tesshu as his messenger to Saigo Takamori 西郷 隆盛 to negotiate for bloodless transfer of power on behalf of Tokugawa government.