Hello Nihonto Members,
[Pardon Any Ignorance I May Show... I Am Completely New To Japanese Swords]
I recently was lucky enough to acquire what I thought was a basic Japanese Gunto from WW2 (Maybe a Type 98 I thought). The swords scabbard has seen better days and is in rough shape. The swords Tsuka shows signs of use and appears to be typical WW2. The Tsuba looks much older than the sword and is obviously not a typical commissioned guard. The actual blade seems to be in good condition (few spots but no serious issues, chips or dents) as well as it's been sitting in a box in a basement since it was brought back from WW2. After a couple days of having the sword I became more curious as to it's origins since the tsuba looked 100 years older than the rest of the sword. I thought maybe this was an older family blade and tsuba that was re-purposed for the Japanese military. I researched how to ID the sword and came to the conclusion I would have to remove the handle which was nerve wrecking but was really easy to do. My wife laughs at me but I always wear think rubber gloves when holding the sword.
Anyways, I took some snapshots of the mei and researched the kanji online. After a bit of research I got lucky and found a similar sword which bare similar kanji which led to me finding more and more and more... examples. Basically I have, I think, a pretty typical but not rare Yokoyamo Sukesada. From what I have researched (and I know basically nothing on these topics) this region, Sukesada, produced a large quantity of swords many years ago. However, all of the similar swords I have seen online have a kanji for a clan (all being "Fujiwara"). My sword has a straight line of kanji with no clan marking. I think it reads "bi zen kuni yoko yama ko zuke dai jo suke sada". I took photos of the one side of tang. I was 95% sure I did not see any markings on the opposite side of the tang so I took no pictures (now I am questioning if there were markings on that side since I am not 100% sure). I also checked the tsuba for any markings but did not see any.
Any information anyone might have as to the age or any other details of the blade and tsuba would be much appreciated. I took these photos with an iPhone (Sorry for the quality) but will snap more photos with my dslr if anyone would like more photos.
Thanks for Your Time,