Fact or Fiction #20: Answer

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Kata Bar-Asher is the son of Simeon Bar-Asher and Himiko. He is one of the main characters in The Shison. He is named after Himiko’s father, Fujiwara no Kata who dies before Kata Bar-Asher was born. Simeon and Himiko followed the Jewish tradition of naming children after close relatives who passed away prior to the child’s birth. As, Bar Aher’s parents were both still alive at the time, and Kata Bar-Asher’s sister is named after Himiko’s mother, Kata was a logical and emotional choice.

Kata Bar-Asher lives near Hakata and is a high ranking officer in the Dazaifu, which was essentially the government for Heian era Kyuushu, and perhaps more importantly, in charge of the main port of Hakata. This meant that the Dazaifu was both in charge of foreign traders and dignitaries who entered Japan through the main port if Hakata, and in charge of defending it from invaders. In The Shison, Kata Bar-Asher must help save Japan from Jurchen pirates/soldiers who attack Hakata and seek to invade and pillage Japan, while protecting the family and friends he loves.

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