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O-Suriage ? Need Help With Identification And Translation

katana for sale translation

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#1 Mike McCabe

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Posted 30 January 2016 - 12:34 PM

I recently inherited this katana sword and would like to find out the history and age

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#2 Gunome

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Posted 30 January 2016 - 01:33 PM

Hello,

mei is : izumo no kami fujiwara yoshitake

出雲守藤原吉武
a shinto smith

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Sebastien V.

#3 Mike McCabe

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Posted 31 January 2016 - 07:28 AM

Thank you very much. Were you able to tell what type of sword it was or Age

#4 ROKUJURO

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Posted 31 January 2016 - 11:34 PM

Lmoirkie,

if this is not your name would you please sign all posts with at least a real first name plus an initial as per Brian's rules?

If your blade is less than 606 mm long (tip to MUNE MACHI), then you have a WAKIZASHI. It seems to have been shortened at one time in its history. If the signature is correct and all features of the blade as well (compare with http://www.samuraisw...take/index.htm) you will find that YOSHITAKE was active around 1680. But the age of a blade is of lesser importance, the quality is what counts.

It might be difficult to judge your blade in that condition.    

 


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Regards,

Jean C.

#5 Jussi Ekholm

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Posted 31 January 2016 - 11:59 PM

Going bit over my own level here but I'd guess that might be 2nd gen Yoshitake who is listed working at Kyōhō (1716 - 1736). I am thinking this as the first generation used to sign Izumo no Daijō.

 

I don't think your sword is o-suriage but it's little shortened from the bottom. I can't say if the mei is genuine but it does start on the position where Yoshitake signatures tend to start. However in your sword there seems to be a strange looking bump, which makes me think that machi has been moved bit more down the blade. So the sword would have had a tad longer blade length originally, or that's what I think.

 

Can't help you much with this but if the signature is genuine the smith is quite good. Definately could use a look by someone more experienced than me.


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Jussi Ekholm


#6 Mike McCabe

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Posted 03 February 2016 - 10:35 AM

Thank you ROKUJURO is there any recommendation on getting polished etc? Is it in such bad shape that it would not be worth it?

#7 ROKUJURO

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Posted 03 February 2016 - 11:51 AM

Mike,

the decision is up to you of course, but go slow with it! Have a renowned expert (Japanese trained polisher) have a close look on it first! A blade in this condition might have issues (HAGIRE, WARE, burnt in a fire etc.) that are very difficult to see! 

It could well come out as an interesting blade with nice O-GISSAKI, and if the workmanship confirms an authentic signature you may consider having it polished. The quality HABAKI and the decorated SAYA (not so much the TSUBA) may suggest someone cherished this WAKIZASHI - probably a wealthy merchant and not a SAMURAI.

Think of the costs you will have to face (polish plus SHIRA SAYA, possibly new HABAKI, paperwork, freight charges, handling agent...) and of the market value after all that. 


Regards,

Jean C.

#8 Geraint

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Posted 03 February 2016 - 12:13 PM

Dear Mike,

 

Just to add to what Jussi has said, Hawley lists two generations, both of whom used the "no Kami" title at times.  An article in the ToKen Society magazine, reproduced from Rei magazine says that the existence of three generations has been established.  Either way the sword needs to be looked at by someone knowledgeable and in hand.  The first generation was a son of Horikawa Kunitake and a student of Dewa Daijo Kunimichi.  They also make polearms, (one naginata in the V & A museum in London).  

 

I am sure members can advise you about sword study groups and other things depending on where you are located.  Enjoy!

 

All the best.


Geraint

#9 Mike McCabe

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Posted 21 February 2016 - 09:08 AM

Today I had a person tell me ( based on pictures) the sword is Japanese however the signature was fake called ge-mei. And that it was a shortened katana about the era but not his work. So I am at a loss now, I do not want to send it anywhere and I am having a very hard time finding anyone I my area that is knowledgeable. Help?!
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#10 Brian

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Posted 21 February 2016 - 11:01 AM

Mike,

Gimei was common...some say there are more false signatures, than real ones on swords. I don't know if that is right or not, but the fact is that a false signature does not make a sword junk. Plenty of old, good swords with a spurious signature on them out there. Been done since hundreds of years ago. No-one can tell for sure if your sword is gimei or not. People can give an opinion, but a shinsa is the only way to know for sure. However, the main point is not whether the mei is right or not. Do you like the sword? Then that's the most important thing. Without considerable expense, you may never know for sure who did make it. Certainly genuine, and a few hundred years old.
To know for sure, you need to get it papered. Whether that makes financial sense or not is up to you. I would just oil it, keep it clean, and enjoy it. Perhaps see if you can find a collector near you, to show it to.


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#11 paulb

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Posted 21 February 2016 - 11:06 AM

Hi Mike

You face a very common dilemma and I am afraid it doesnt get easier :(

Firstly I would be careful taking one opinion as fact especially if it is given based on photographs and on a blade that is out of polish. It might certainly be possible to confirm the signature is gimei but not really confirm the workmanship or date.

They may well be right but at the moment it is just another opinion not a statement of fact.

second point- where abouts are you? there are a number of different societies, clubs and fairs around and it may be you could find one near you to visit. It is always worthwhile gatting several opinions from enthusiasts "sword in hand" if possible.

regards

Paul

edit sorry repeating Brian our posts must have landed side by side!



#12 jason_mazzy

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Posted 21 February 2016 - 04:41 PM

the signature does not look to have a confident hand. However without a polish, we do not know how nice the sword is.


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#13 Mike McCabe

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Posted 22 February 2016 - 06:39 AM

I am located in the Jackson Mississippi Area. To know the real history of this sword is really what I seek. Just want to find someone local and not have to ship it anywhere. Thank you to everyone that has offered advice, this is all new to me, I have learned a tremendous amount already





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