Re: History of Black Belt?
I think Sandan is the barrier for many of these arts and then there are arts where promotion is based on shiai - a young talented Judo or Kendo player can have an advanced dan rank especially if he's been at the game since he was 5.
I think what I'm trying to say is that there is so much variation that a comparison is essentially meaningless.
Ani - didn't you in a previous thread complain that a Japanese Shodan was not particularly impressed with yours. He of course might have been using different criteria than your previous instructor but he is probably also convinced that Shodans outside of Japan aren't worth much.