The warriors of early Japan bore only a passing resemblance to the later samurai. Weaponry and armor were of a distinctly Chinese flavor, and the earliest warriors carried shields, a device evidently out of vogue even before the Heian period. Some of our knowledge of the weapons and protection the early Japanese warrior carried comes from artifacts excavated from the tombs constructed in the 4th and 5th centuries to house departed royalty. Another, just as valuable resource are the haniwa, which were clay statues evidently used as grave markers. A good number of these haniwa depict warriors, and these provide us some insight into the nature of ‘home-grown’ Japanese armor of the time. The horse was imported to Japan sometime in the 4th or 5th century, and quickly became a valuable commodity. Also brought over from the continent were Keiko, or suits of lamellar scaled armor. This type, which is traditionally associated with horsemen, provided the foundation from which the classic patterns of samurai armor construction would build.Just as important is the samurai’s weaponry is the code of ethics by which they lived by which is known as the code of Bushido. This term refers to the moral code principals that developed among the samurai class of Japan, on a basis of national tradition influenced by Zen and Confucianism. The first use of the term apparently occurred during the civil war period of the 16th century; its precise content varied historically as samurai standards evolved.