Hailing from Osaka, Kusunoki Masashige is still regarded as the model samurai. When he was born in 1294, many samurai were impoverished and very upset, as they believed they had not been rewarded sufficiently by the government for their actions fighting the Mongolians.
Some samurai banded together to form the Akuto, a group that did not belong to the present government. Kusunoki Masashige was a member of this group, though little else is known of his early life.
The samurai warriors are a crucial element of Japanese culture and history. Samurai describes not just a kind of soldier but a social caste.