Sasaki Kojiro (1585 - April 14, 1612) also known as Ganryu Kojiro) was a prominent Japanese swordsman, born in the Fukui Prefecture. Kojiro's favored weapon during combat was a straight-edged nodachi with a blade-length of over 90 cm (3 feet) long. As a comparison, the average blade-length of the regular katana seldom surpasses 70 cm. It was called the "Monohoshi Zao" (Clothes-Drying Pole, often translated into English as "The Drying Pole" ). Despite the sword's length and weight, Kojiro's strokes with the weapon were unnaturally quick and precise.