Samurai & Bushido
With the decline of central power, local aristocrats took justice into their own hands. They turned to military force, and a new class of military servants emerged whose purpose was to protect the security and property of their employers. Called the Samurai ("those who serve"), these warriors fought of horseback, clad in helmet and armor, and carried a sword and bow.
Like knights, the samurai were supposed to live by a strict warrior code, known in Japan as Bushido ("the way of the warrior").