Knight vs. Samurai: 7 Differences, Definition, Pros & Cons

In their own times, the knight and the samurai were both great warriors. Sumeria was in Japan, whereas the Knights were in Europe. Both of these individuals were well-trained, intelligent, and courteous.

But there were differences between knights and samurai when it came to their history, clothing, training, and ways of fighting. The most obvious difference between knights and samurais is that knights wear armour and samurais don’t.

What is Knight?

A knight is someone who has been given the title of knighthood by the monarch or another political leader of the country, usually for their work in the military. Knights were known for wearing heavy armour and doing very well in battle.

Not only were they great fighters, but they were also smart and polite. All of the knights were smart and up-to-date. Their goal was to fight for the pride and honour of their country. The knight charges in a small group, which is the “chivalry” rule.

They act like they are dangerous to scare off their opponents. They used to cover their whole bodies with metal links that were made into armour. They used their shields and swords during the fight. Knights are members of the military and take part in tournaments.

What Is a Samurai?

The word “samurai” comes from Japan and means “servant” or “person who serves.” The samurai were part of a powerful military aristocracy in Japan. But this fighter did not have any ranks.

Knight vs. Samurai

Samurai follow a strict set of rules called “bushido,” which means “the way of the warrior.” People also believe that the bushido is religiously significant to them.They also fought for the pride and honour of their country and its people.

Samurai use bows and arrows as weapons when the enemy is far away. But when the other person is close, they use a sword. Samurai guard their swords as if it were their honour or their lives.

They used a katana and a shorter blade in the battle. They also wore armour to protect themselves from attacks, but it was lighter and not as strong as a knight’s armour.

Key Differences Between Knight and Samurai

HistoryDuring the early middle ages, knights were only conferred as mounted warriors and considered lower nobility, but by the late middle ages, they were associated with ideals of chivalry and considered perfect courtly Christian warriors.At first, samurai were the warriors of premodern Japan. But later on, they made up ruling the military class, which made them the highest ranking social caste of the Edo period. In the 1870s, samurai families were 5% of the population.
LooksKnights of the middle ages were fully covered with armor and heavy clothing. During battles, they wore chainmail, helmets, and full body armor.Samurai wore their lightweight armor during battles, but when outside home, they wore two-piece costumes known as “kimishima” upon their kimono.
ArmorKnights wore metal or iron armor to keep themselves protected during battle. But during the 14th century, solid plate armor became more commonJapanese samurai armor was made up of many small pieces of a different material. Steel, leather, wood, and bamboo were laced together with silk cord
WeaponsMedieval knights have a great relationship with their swords. But they also used daggers, battleaxes, poleaxe, and lances.Samurai mostly used long swords known as katana, but some small short swords and small knives were also found with everyone.
StrategiesKnights were good at blocking passed pawnSamurai mostly used their weapon range strategies
Military RankKnights had military ranks; Grosskomtur was the highest rank which was second-in-command after the grandmaster.Samurai do not have military ranks, but they have some principle ranks: vassals of a feudal lord, housemen, and the lowest.
Traditional SkillsHorsemanship and weaponry were the traditional skills of knightsSamurai learned martial art and also skilled in horsemanship, archery, and swordsmanship

Knight vs. Samurai Similarities

  • Whether knight or samurai were great and well-educated warriors.
  • If we talk about medieval knight vs. samurai, both start to get their training from childhood and fight well in the battles.
  • Both rode horses in battles and fought for the honor and dignity of their people and countries.

Knight vs. Samurai

European Knight


  • Their metal armour did a great job of protecting their whole bodies.
  • Because of their armour, it was possible to tell who was who and where they were from.
  • A knight utilized many powerful, huge weapons as well as a shield.
  • When riding horses, knights were usually bigger than other riders.
  • Due to the large amount of armour they wore, knights were physically hard to beat.


  • The metal armour could rub against your skin, so you had to wear linen underwear.
  • It weighed a lot because it was made of a lot of metal.
  • Their armour made it hard to move around.
  • The helmet’s high level of safety made it hard to see and breathe.
  • Different kinds of materials were used to make the armour.

Japanese Samurai


  • It was light because most of it was made of bamboo, and only a few parts were made of cloth or metal; it was also easy to move because it was light.
  • Excellent for hand-to-hand combat, particularly with the samurai’s precise and quick movements.
  • Samurai could fight with ease both on horseback and on foot.
  • Excel at hand-to-hand combat and a variety of other fighting styles.


  • They had less protection for their bodies, which made them a little more vulnerable.
  • Their armour was made of a variety of materials.
  • The samurai’s weapons were not as strong as the knights’.
  • They mostly fought on foot, which made it easy for a knight on horseback to beat them.
  • Most of their weapons, like arrows, couldn’t hurt a knight who was wearing armour.


In the past, both knights and samurais were known for being great fighters. Both were well-mannered and well-trained. The samurai and the knight, on the other hand, were very different in many ways.

Both are from different places and fight in different ways. During the metal era, knights wore heavy metal clothes. On the other hand, samurai wear light clothes. Knights rode horses into battle and used swords and shields.

Samurai can walk and ride horses on their own. The Samurai fought with arrows, bows, and two swords. The samurai didn’t have the rank of knight in the army.

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