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Everything posted by Shugyosha

  1. Also the one at the bottom of the picture in civillian mounts missing the tsuka ito has potential.
  2. No they had a guy called a Nakirishi who would do the signatures. Probably the same in Bizen and Mino during the 16th century during the days of mass production.
  3. Hi John, Something seems a little odd about the tip of the blade as though it has been broken and has had some surgery, probably by taking metal from the mune side, that has distorted the overall shape in order not to lose the boshi. The sword seems too thin in this area and the kissaku too stubby. Looking in detail at the mei, the colour of rust inside the strokes of the kanji seems newer than the patina on the tang. This, along with the smith’s title not being included, raises my suspicions that it’s a later add-on and so gimei. I’ve, not otherwise compared the mei with authenticated versions though. I think that most of the value in this package would lie with the fittings if anywhere. That said there are some marks on the lacquer of the scabbard that suggest that the metal fittings near the end have been moved or replaced. Also, the fuchi, the metal piece nearest the guard on the hilt, doesn’t seem to match, but that might be my eye misleading me. Anyway, I can see (or at least suspect) enough warning signs to put me off bidding if I couldn’t resolve them by viewing the item in hand.
  4. Hi Jon, You're correct. I don’t think that there’s any reason to distrust papers for tosogu or those issued by the head office. I may have it wrong but think Grev is asking whether there’s any disparity in the standard between the Tokubetsu Kicho papers and Juyo Token i.e. would an item with the older papers pass JT?
  5. Back to Gwyn’s question, I agree with comments above that many tsuba and perhaps sword fittings in general are undervalued today in terms of the effort and artistry put into their creation. At the time of manufacture, I think the cost of the raw materials would have been comparatively little compared to the hours put into forging a steel plate, cutting sukashi or carving nikubori. Lord only knows the skill, time and patience that went into creating a high quality nanako ground. Steel tsuba, historically I feel would be ascribed an aesthetic value because of demand by warriors who liked the more austere wabi-sabi look. Gradually more complex designs in steel evolved as peace-time created the leisure to make and appreciate them. For me, it is especially these that are undervalued today and I would cite better pieces from Bushu, Echizen, Hizen and Choshu schools as examples of this. At the other end of the scale, I think there was always a demand for works by the Goto and, later, by the machibori masters that inflated their prices as these were the province of the well heeled. Sorry for the long post.
  6. +1 There’s no point in buying what you don’t like for any reason. As Paul Bowman says, buy what you like, then do the study to learn why you like it.
  7. Kind of. I knew there was a smith with the nickname "hidari something" who was famous for writing his mei back to front so I had quick google to see if it tallied with the name of the smith on your blade. The search also chucked out the "Mutsu (no) kami" part so it was possible to distinguish him from the other Kaneyasu in the list posted above. It seems like an interesting sword, do you have any pictures of the blade?
  8. You need to Google “hidari” Kaneyasu who had the title Mutsu (no) kami and compare the workmanship of his blades with yours. This is the smith that Jean is referring to who wrote his kanji backwards.
  9. Hi Nicolas, I don’t think that this would be considered kazu uchi mono as it is signed and dated so it probably lies in the middle ground between the best, custom order blades (signed with the smith’s personal and art name), and unsigned blades. So one you could buy off the shelf from the smith rather than sold in a bundle to a daimyo to arm his arrow fodder. I don’t think that this would be called unokubi zukuri as it has a yokote. Bear in mind also that the grooves may not have been done by the smith but added at a later date. Young, fit Samurai are as prone to getting old as everyone else and it maybe that the owner needed to lighten what is still a stout blade. The Hozon paper gives you, and anyone you sell it to, the comfort of knowing that it’s a genuine 16th century blade and has no fatal flaws. Beyond that it doesn’t say much as regards quality as poorer blades than this will still pass if they are in a decent state of polish and have no hagire etc. Hope that helps.
  10. The received wisdom is to not use uchiko on a blade that’s in polish as it can damage it. I’d be a bit cagey as to where I got my oil from as whatever is added to it to give it the scent might stain a blade. Clove oil can oxidise apparently. That said, it doesn’t need to be choji oil, light machine or gun oil is fine, do a search on here it’s been discussed often.
  11. The phases of collecting: Denial: Oh, that thing, no - I’ve had it for ages; Anger: I can’t believe you’re accusing me of spending our holiday savings. Again; Bargaining: I know I said I’d never do it again, but what about if I sell off some of the other stuff? Depression: No, I can’t sell that stuff, that’s the really great stuff that took me ages to find and forms the basis of my collection; Acceptance: Ok I’ll sell it, but only because your divorce lawyer says I have to.
  12. Hi Matt, I think Hiromitsu for the signature and February in the 20th year of Showa for the date, so Feb 1945.
  13. Hi Matt, I think David’s suggestion of Suketoshi is good: Hawley lists a guy signing similarly (Bizen Kuni Osafune Suketoshi) working around 1844. The style of the signature suggests shin shinto Bizen, so there’s a decent chance that this is your guy.
  14. Thanks Dominik, that is a lovely thing.
  15. Any chance of some pictures of the blade?
  16. Hi Dominic, Maybe: “bestowed by an official of the Nabeshima” then naginata etc. Then in the next photo “writing from (written on) original shirasaya.
  17. Bishu Osafune Suke …can’t see the last one clearly enough. Not “sada” though.
  18. I'd echo what Grey and Brian have said. Unsigned and/ or shortened shinto and shin shinto blades aren't that desireable to collectors and you may well find that you won't get back what you paid for this if or when you decide to move it on. For me it looks like it might be machi okuri but that might be my eyes, however, this would mark it down for me. There are many swords out there and you are looking at spending relatively decent money. I'd hang fire for a while and get a better feel for the market before diving in - don't be afraid of missing out. Keep an eye on the sales section on here as reasonably priced good quality items pop up fairly regularly.
  19. Hi Paz, I've PM'd you with my thoughts on the Lanes Armoury.
  20. Hi Nick, I've looked long and hard at it and I keep coming back to the obvious one: Sukesada 祐定 I think that the "mouth" part of the right hand radical for Suke isn't clearly done and that the placement of the strokes in the left hand radical makes it look a bit like the halberd 戈 which sent me in the wrong direction. I can't find any kanji with this radical and the left hand one礻which is clearly part of the Suke kanji. Anyhow, that's my logic.
  21. Hi Will, Welcome to NMB. I got the same as Scott and Uwe - The one on the left reads Nakai ju Echizen Kami Naomasa - resident of Nakai, Echizen kami (honorary title) Naomasa (smith's art name) - 中井住越前守直正 The one on the right reads [at] Miyazaki (place name) Echizen kami Naomasa Saku [kore] - Echizen Kami Naomasa made [this] - 宮崎越前守直正作 [之]. Shortening the tang has cut through the last character. Assuming they are both genuine signatures (forged signatures are not unknown) then according to Markus Sesko's compendium he was working around Genji (元治, 1864-1865), in the province of Ōshū.
  22. Give them a decent burial, they’re past help.
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