Well, these are the possibilities we have to consider:
1.- Yamamoto is older than the royals
2.- The royals are being kept young via some other means. Could be the dimension, could be the royal key, could be the king.... This could imply at least some of the royals are older than yamamoto.
Its entirely possible yamamoto is in fact older than the royals and he was given a zampakuto a couple thousand years ago. Its not like we have reason to believe there is a timeframe under which someone can get a zampakuto and become a shinigami.
Now, if the royals are being kept young then things are different. Shutara seems to know mayuri so she is perhaps young and kirio was not even a founding member of the gotei 13. On the other hand nimaiya, the monk guy and kirinji seem to well precede the gotei 13. Kirinji taught unohana how to heal so he easily predates the gotei 13 altogether. Nimaiya invented zampakutos as we know those were around in some form 2000 years ago. Overall what we have to remember here is that the gotei 13 is a relatively new organization. We have seen flashbacks of yamamoto from 2000 years ago but the gotei 13 started when yamamoto gathered a bunch of bloodthirsty murderers to defeat the quincy. That alone has the logical implication that soul society had a military structure well before the 13 squads appeared.
Ultimately the issue at hand is that an asauchi is not a shinigami's power, it is a link to a shinigami's power. That being the case has the implication that an asauchi is not fundamental to a shinigami's power as the power would exist within a shinigami with or without an asauchi. The asauchi is merely the means for a shinigami to manifest his true powers into this world. The zen stance which ichigo used to get FGT seems to require an asauchi to some degree too so perhaps the asauchi also served to improve communication between a shinigami and his power. Then again ichigo has gone in into his inner world without an asauchi although that could have something to do with ichigo being more than just a shinigami.
---------- Post added at 10:39 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:36 AM ----------
That said, I don't think yamamoto has the actual oldest zampakuto. To begin with it would make sense nimaiya has the first zampakuto ever overall. It is possible that he gave the first to someone else though... Also, I don't think the translation saying yamamoto has the oldest zampakuto is entirely accurate. The manga has made the point that yamamoto has the oldest "flame" type zampakuto, not the actual oldest. Other translations and chapters support that notion.
I think there may be a translation error, it says "The oldest and most powerful flame Zanpakutou of all!!", it may mean "The oldest flame Zanpakutou". I find it quite weird that Nimaiya would give an asauchi to Yamamoto before using one for himself but if all the shinigami, at least those around Nimaiya, obtained an asauchi at the time, I guess it's feasible that Yamamoto might unlock it first.
The way Yama handled Aizen and (whatever the name of that thing was) without a Zanpaktou seems like a testament that he has fought a lot without a sword in his past, at least that seems pretty evident to me.
I'm well aware that Yama could have practiced a lot without a Zanpaktou and that it's not a proof, but seriously now, the man was a scary nightmare even without his Zanpaktou.
The oldest Sword ever found is about 5300-5000 years old, and Soul Society seem to learn alot from the human world, it seems knowledge is carried over.
However if you look into the Japanese history, then the oldest swords ever found in its society are little less than 2000 years old, http://www.shadowofleaves.com/sword-history/
If you think about it and Kubo wants to inspire his Manga reflecting a bit on real life, making his fantasy seem plausible in real life, but in a way that we as living humans just doesn't know about it.
In such a way it makes a more exciting fantasy story cause it's half fantasy, half reality.
Given that we know that swords first came about in Japan in little less than 2000 years ago, perhaps the creation of swords came about in Soul Society around same time period.
Given that, Nimaiya could have come about as a swordsman crafter, and took the idea further and developed it into a Zanpaktou with the creation of Asauchi's.
Nimaiya could have been inspired from the real world into making swords, and combined it with his knowledge about the spiritual world.
---------- Post added at 04:41 AM ---------- Previous post was at 04:36 AM ----------
I think this gives a good estimate for a possible point where swords came into Soul Society, and perhaps shortly after the invention of Aasuchi's came about, if not around same time.
Of course the Shinigami could have been inspired from China or Turkey where some older swords have been found, however Kubo seem to base his manga around the Japanese.
Shinigami's are dead people souls right? "When souls with exceptional spiritual energy train their bodies, they reach the level of Shinigami."
so what if when Yama died in human world as a human being he was at least 30-40-ish years old and getting old is slower than normal human being (of course :P)
Last edited by freshseth83; August 03, 2013 at 01:54 AM.
Well the fact of the matter is...Yamamoto is like the 3rd Hokage... Experienced.