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5 Kanji Symbols for WARRIOR in Japanese

warrior written in japanese kanji lettersKanji characters

Hi, it’s Junko from Japan. The most common word for a warrior is SENSHI in Japanese. But there’re some other words that can also mean a warrior. I’ll introduce 5 Japanese words for a warrior and explain what’s the difference between them.

SENSHI (warrior, fighter)

senshi written in japanese kanji letters, meaning warrior

SEN = battle, fight, war
SHI = a great man, military personnel, Samurai

When it comes to a translation for a warrior, this SENSHI comes first. It’s a word for those who fight on a battlefield. 

BUSHI (Japanese professional fighter)

bushi written in japanese kanji

BU = brave, war, army, martial arts
SHI = a great man, military personnel, Samurai

BUSHI is a Japanese traditional word for a warrior. It originally meant those who armed themselves with Katana swords and armor. The BUSHI people were professional warriors who made combat their family business. 

This Kanji combination can be read as MONONOFU. BUSHI and MONONOFU are the same in meaning.

MUSHA and BUZIN are other ways of calling BUSHI warriors. Though the Kanji combinations and readings are different, the meanings are almost the same as BUSHI.


musha written in japanese kanji

MU = brave, war, army, martial arts
SHA = person, people, those who


bujin written in japanese

BU = brave, war, army, martial arts
JIN = person, people, human


samurai written in japanese kanji

This Kanji symbol stands for Japanese SAMURAI. The word SAMURAI comes from an old verb SABURAU that meant to serve or obey someone. SAMURAI were professional fighters who served the nobility while BUSHI widely meant warriors.

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