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    Thomas S.

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  1. Hahaha, the puzzling of the members here is already funny. If the value and the time are correct, that leaves essentially Soshu-Den / Masamune student remains. But the pronounced Sori is not really Nanbokucho typical and is more reminiscent of Kamakura II or III. A Yamashiro Rai blade would be quite nice!
  2. According to my information, the import turnover tax on collectibles, art and cultural goods as defined by the Swiss turnover tax law is a tiny 2.5%. Also funny: Customs experts emphasize that it is a cultural good. Here in Germany, lawsuits are underway against the levying of the full VAT rate on the import of such objects. Swords, armor and kodogu are not recognized as collectibles and cultural property in these cases, and the reduced tax rate is denied. But if customs catches someone as in this case. then of course it is a cultural property. However. If the value is really correct, the swordsmith would have to be in the first league...
  3. sabiji


    Hizen Masahiro would be my spontaneous idea as well.
  4. Basically, Kyle has already written everything with the reference that Ikkansai Yoshihiro was a teacher of this Kunihide. If one sees such a Hamon torn by an aggressive Hada, must go actually immediately the alarm bells that here influence of Ikkansai Yoshihiro is present. He had developed a forging technique whose result is almost reminiscent of modern damascus, in order to come as close as possible to the appearance of Norishige blades. This effect is also sometimes seen in Kawaii Hisayuki, who also learned from Yoshihiro, only that Hisayuki forged the Hada more densely, so that the effect appears much more subtle. With Yoshihiro's work, I sometimes don't know whether to rejoice or cry. Some blades look quite spectacular, others just awful. A good example is the other linked blade by Kunihide: it's pretty special...okay, whoever likes it...
  5. Hi Bryce, I think it is a Gasaku of Sho and Nidai. I gave a lecture on Hisamichi at the NBTHK EB more than 15 years ago, but unfortunately I no longer have the script. Hisamichi is originally from a samurai family and is not a member of the Mishina clan. How he was actually able to assume his position in this family group, I have never really been able to clarify. Officially, you read everywhere that he was a student of Nidai Iga no Kami Kinmichi. But it is noticeable that there was a strong bond between Hisamichi and the Izumi Kami Rai Kinmichi branch of the family. I rather think that Shodai Hisamichi worked a lot with the Nidai and Sandai Rai Kinmichi, and probably learned more from the Nidai Rai Kinmichi, whose 3rd son he adopted as Nidai Hisamichi. His name was Hisatsugu during the Shodai's lifetime. In the late phase of the Shodai, Hisatsugu handed over the Kikumon, while he then engraved Edagiku, and Hisatsugu proudly calls himself Chakushi, heir or successor of Shodai Hisamichi.
  6. These are Hanshan and Shide (Kanzan and Jittoku). Both with their attributes, Hanshan as a scholar the scroll, and Shide as a servant the broom.
  7. Well, I would want to do it like Barry - and blades which I have actually held in my hands and been able to study, and which have really impressed me. This is of course completely subjective, because of course my personal taste and preferences play a role. And as I said, it is about certain blades (signed, or with attribution), which have remained in my memory and which I would also like to name spontaneously, without thinking twice. Shintogo Kunimitsu Rai Kunimitsu Unji Kamakura Sukezane Shizu Kaneuji Nanki Shigekuni Dewa Daijo Kunimichi Yasutsugu Nidai Shume Kami Yasuyo Kiyomaro
  8. Your idea is not bad in principle. However, specializing in something requires solid knowledge of the whole subject. Especially the history of Nihonto is characterized by complex influences and connections of styles and schools. One should have exact ideas when focusing on something, and especially why. Otherwise, there is the danger that one simply starts to collect pieces of an area of interest - just because it is a piece of xy or from yz. Your request to concentrate on Yamato and Hizen would be for me a dancing on far too big weddings. Of course, you can do that and try to collect a sword from every Yamato school, or from certain representatives of Hizen-To. Or you can collect various examples of the different generations of Tadayoshis. But since you're asking for opinions, and let's stay with Hizen for example: you could focus on a particular smith, for example Yukihiro. He had his early daijo phase, his kami phase, later his ichi phase with Nanban-Tetsu in Nagasaki and Nagase. One could create a great documentation about his creative phases. The advantage is that Yukihiro as a Hizen representative is quite affordable and you can always find interesting swords. Hizen Masahiro is also very interesting, if only because he should become a successor of the main line. His work is one of the most versatile of all Hizen swordsmiths in my opinion. However, Masahiro can be a bit more price intensive. I also find interesting schools that otherwise receive little attention. An example would be the Shitahara school. This school had broken away from the Odawara soshu in the 16th century and forged in Hachioji on the edge of the Musashi plain. The idea of the Odawara-Hojo was to have a sword forge as close as possible to the arch enemy of the Uesugi. Very beautiful swords were made there, and Chikashige was not called Musashi-Masamune for nothing. Here you can collect beautiful examples with the typical Shitahara-Utsumaki. Some O-Suriage Shitahara blades are also often misinterpreted as Naoe-Shizu. Odawara and Hachioji are also easy to reach from Tokyo, and if you are allowed to travel to Japan again, you are welcome to come and see for yourself. You see, there are extremely many possibilities. But take your time to develop your idea. Otherwise, you'll just start randomly collecting blades of a certain area. And then when you have a goal you want to pursue, choose your blades very carefully. It must be very important to you why exactly this blade, and not one of the 5 other blades of this school or this swordsmith. You must be able to justify this choice. Then you are on the right way to build a very interesting and specialized collection.
  9. Well, and now? If I had a typical koto kikuchi, would I submit it for a hozon? Certainly not. For what? If I had some 08/15 unsigned sankaku yari. Would I submit it? Same answer. Same for me for unsigned katana or wakizashi or mediocre quality daggers. I have stopped counting how many hozon mumei shinshinto jumyo I have seen. The funniest thing, often the styles and qualities are completely different, so I find it hard to believe that these are all supposed to be from some Shinshinto period jumyo. But that's the way it is. When I started the hobby over 30 years ago, a hozon was still something special. Tokubetsu Hozon was then already the Juyo of the "poor" man. If someone had told me at that time, what today gets all Hozon, I would have declared him crazy.
  10. Here is another example with Hozon at Aoi Art. https://www.aoijapan.net/yari-mumeiunsigned-kikuchi-yari/
  11. This is perfectly normal. It's not the first time I've seen a hozon for a kikuchi yari. It never says more than kikuchi yari and mumei. What more can you write about it?
  12. Kanesaki saku - Shinto. Well, the NBTHK makes it quite easy for itself. Not because they do not deal with a particular generation, but because there were also the neighboring Mimasaka Kanesaki. And unfortunately, they also worked quite similarly. The Inaba and the Mimasaka Kanesaki show Bizen borrowings. In the case of Inaba, it is quite certain that the Shinto shodai coming from Mino also worked in Bizen. To what extent the Inabas and the Mimasakas are even originally related to each other is beyond my knowledge. The Inaba-Kanesaki often make the Kurijiri Ha-sided steeper, so that the Kurijiri looks more like Mimasaka. But I don't put my hand in the fire for that.
  13. Hi Adam, It looks like the blade, although still quite young, has already had quite a material demanding polish (or polishes). Since the monouchi area usually takes the brunt of the damage with use, the noticeable tapering there and the relatively narrow tip could be the result of a repair. It would not be surprising, because especially in the Bakumatsu blades were used again with pleasure, and such huge swords were enormously popular just in the time. The shape of the blade makes sense given the length. The Shinogi-ji sloping through the Naginata form from the Shinogi to the Mune saves material and weight. Personally, I would advise against asking Tsuruta-san for a different finish. The blade wouldn't get any better because I'm afraid he does it himself, whereas the current appearance of the Kissaki polish already looks a lot like him. Besides, with the blade length, it would add up to a pretty penny. Especially in the Shinshinto, samurai swordsmiths were nothing unusual. It was quite in keeping with the spirit of the times, partly out of necessity, partly as a hobby. Tsuruta-san already mentioned Mito-Rekko, the sword-forging daimyo. But also his aite like Katsumura Norikatsu, Masakatsu, Nagakatsu etc. had samurai status. Norikatsu studied with Hosokawa Masayoshi and was apparently even adopted by him. The Hosokawa school was known for its swordsmiths with samurai status. Kawaii Hisayuki also studied at the Hosokawa school. Hisayuki is probably the most famous samurai ( he was Hatamoto of the Tokugawa) who forged first in his spare time, and then in retirement. According to some sources, he was also a master and teacher of yari and naginata. Unlike many of his samurai colleagues, he seemed to have no financial worries and could choose his clients. Thus he forged a nearly 3.7 meter long nodachi for the Atsuta shrine in Nagoya, which was certainly not cheap. There are many other examples from the late Edo. In any case, enjoy your new blade!
  14. It has been quite a while since I held a Yasuyo in my hands. That was a Nie-monster! This is also a Nie-Monster! For my taste a little too much Ara-Nie - but stylistically the Deki already comes damn close to Yasuyo...
  15. I'm with Brian on this one. The Ha-Machi is a very sensitive place. A sloppily made and not correctly fitting habaki can quickly cause damage here.
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