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Everything posted by Tanto54

  1. Dear Marco, Money sent. Thanks for making this very nice donation to an awesome charity and NMB!
  2. Very nice cause - I'll bid 150 Euro.
  3. Dear Pietro, here is the entry from the Japan Wiki page. It says that Kaichi is the origin of Komainu. Will you at least admit that the animal on Bob's tsuba is not a Hakutaku? P.S. Are you just trolling me? 獬豸(かいち、中国語: 獬豸; 拼音: xièzhì シエジー、獬廌)は、中国の伝説上の動物である。日本の狛犬の起源ともされる。
  4. It is a kaichi (獬豸) which is the origin/another name of the Komainu...
  5. Dear Pietro, if you really read each of the sites that you have linked, you will see that the Hakutaku has multiple horns and at least three eyes (and in most cases 9 or more). Here's the pertinent parts from the Wiki article for Hakutaku and Bai Ze (the Chinese creature it came from). In an earlier post you said that the additional eyes were added in Japan, but as you can see from this site, the Chinese version also has many eyes. Most importantly, the normal form is bovine (cow-like) and even when in cat-like form, it has at least three eyes (two normal and one in the middle of the forehead). From Wiki: "hakutaku (白澤) in Japanese is a mythical cow-like beast from Chinese legend.... The common Japanese image generally depicts the hakutaku as a "cow or monstrous cat creature with nine eyes and six horns, arranged in sets of three and two on both its flanks and its man-like face. It is also commonly depicted as having the body of a lion and eight eyes, known for having a horn or multiple horns on their heads." However, the number of extra eyes actually varies depending on interpretation, and sometimes the creature is pictured with only one in the center of its head. It is considered to be "intelligent, and well read with the ability to understand human speech."
  6. Dear Pietro, in one of your earlier posts above, you pointed out that the creature on Bob's tsuba had a long moustache but your three "Hakutaku" photos shown in my previous post don't have a long moustache... By the way, Komainu are depicted with a long moustache and flames in many cases....
  7. Dear Pietro, Nice research! Unfortunately, old mistakes are misleading you. Instead of stretching the realms of reality and credibility to make the creature on Bob's tsuba fit some other creature, why don't we just just use the one that already fits by modern standards? Think about the various photos that you have posted that are labeled Hakutaku - all of them basically derive from two originals (the netsuke and the woodblock) (for example see your three woodblocks below - you can tell they all came from the same original. Now be fair, if that is a Hakutaku, then isn't everything that we have all called a Shishi for hundreds of years really a Hakutaku? Look at it - it is exactly a shishi (see the gold shishi for comparison). Therefore, can't you tell that these are just a mistake that has been repeated? (of course, I'm not saying that the creature on Bob's tsuba is a shishi, I'm just saying that the pictures that you posted to prove it was a hakutaku, look more like a shishi than a Hakutaku or the creature on Bob's tsuba). In the next post, I'll provide the wikipedia pages for the Japanese Hakutaku and the Chinese "Bai Ze" that it came from. It is clear, that despite the few errors that you point to which have been repeated many times over the years, the creature on Bob's tsuba does not meet any accurate description or depiction of a Hakutaku.
  8. Dear Bob and Pietro, I feel I must correct this misidentification. Item #181 is not a Hakutaku. A Hakutaku has multiple horns and additional eyes on its side. All anyone has to do to find out for themselves is to search hakutaku on the Internet (see photo of search below). You will see that 99% of the photos are the same beast. Unfortunately, Joly (in his famous book on Legends) made a mistake (as seen in Pietro's post) and some auction houses (also seen in Pietro's posts) looked at Joly's book and repeated his mistake. There is even a book entitled Hakutaku that has a correct Hakutaku pictured on the front (artists/tsuba makers inevitably show Hakutaku with multiple horns and multiple eyes on their sides). The literature is not really in dispute, Joly just made an error (and it is well know that he made many errors) and it needs to be corrected.
  9. Dear Roger, the Edo castings are usually sand castings and have surfaces like cast iron (unless significantly worked after casting). The kinko modern castings are often made using vulcanized rubber molds and wax injection to make the models and then spin or vacuum casted. Those techniques leave traces like spurs, mold lines, positive bubbles (like tiny dew drops on the surface - especially in crevices), porosity, etc. that are different from the old ways of casting. However, they can copy details down to the level of fingerprints, so they are often difficult to spot. Those modern molding techniques have only been around for 30-40 years, so the tsuba showing those telltale signs are modern fakes. Other signs are the painted on gold/silver highlights that show up on many of them, cast in place sekigane or plugs, and the identical "damage" on multiple copies.
  10. Thanks Glen, one other thing to remember is that many of the Japanese experts are not well versed in these cast fakes either (it is a different skill set - more in the realm of gold-smithing than in tsuba kantei), so mistakes can be made (even by the best...)
  11. Dear Glen, you probably already know this, but just to clarify for others, almost all of the cast items that are being talked about here are modern fakes (from the last 30 years) and are not the kind of "mirror" or Edo castings that the NBTHK is talking about.
  12. I'd spend the money on the best restoration possible instead of papers. In my opinion (for whatever that is worth...), it doesn't need papers, he's not one of the top names and the good quality of the work speaks for itself.
  13. OK, one last try... Item 181 is a komainu - see photos below and compare to Bob's tsuba... Note the similar two pronged horn in the one photo (also same claws, face, teeth, tail, legs, etc. etc.) Bob's Tsuba: Komainu (see two pronged horn?) and Shishi: Another Komainu (single pronged horn in this case, but it doesn't matter - see claws, tail, face, etc.):
  14. Item 181 is a Koma-inu (a "lion dog") which evolved to look very much like a Shishi (a "lion") but with an added horn.
  15. Hi Bob, on item 180, I found him in Haynes, Sesko Signatures and Wakayama signing Doshu-ju Kuniyoshi circa 1800.
  16. Happy New Year Bob! Both are lovely New Year Tosogu, but that Tiger is especially awesome!!!
  17. @Brian You gave me a good laugh! Here's a real one from MFA Boston. Three Sake Tasters which morphed from the Chinese Three Vinegar Tasters. Confucius, Buddha, and Laozi (representing Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism) each taste the sake/vinegar and have a different reaction (sour, bitter, sweet) revealing their different underlying principals and approach to life (despite the fact that they are tasting from the same vat (representing life).
  18. Hey Bob, your Item 170 looks like it has a signature but I can't make it out in the photo (might need to see it in hand). Instead of a daikon, the hitsuana are hossu. A hossu is a priest's fly-whisk, and they symbolize the priest's right to pass on the teachings of Buddha. The large carved kanji appear to be a poem or proverb, and based on a quick look, I see the following: flowers/petals, floating, under, water, moon, heart. You may want to put a photo in the translation section and see if anyone can double check those characters. The meaning may be akin to the proverb Kyoka Suigetsu: "flower seen in the mirror, moon on the water's surface". Something like Zen the teaching of a monkey reaching for the moon's reflection in the water. Some warriors saw themselves as the monkey and therefore interpreted this as a warning against foolishness or unattainable dreams, and other warriors saw themselves as the moon that could not be touched by another's sword. The hossu hitsuana point to the authority to pass on the important learnings of this proverb.
  19. Hi Bob, Item 173 (dragon) is by Kunishige, and yes he worked in Hirado in Hizen province. Haynes says there are two or three generations signing with this mei from the early 1700’s. Wakayama says that they rarely used a Kao / Kakihan, but when they did it took one of two forms (yours is one of those forms).
  20. BTW @paul_tsuba_info I really like your "Tsuba Info" site - very informative (https://tsuba.info/schools/). Great for helping people understand the different tosogu schools and some of the more famous makers. Hope you continue to add to it!
  21. Hi Paul, "Tokusei" is read as Norikiyo, and he was a student of the Yokoya School (and is copying Somin's famous Shishi design here).
  22. Dear Bob, I really like the modeling of the tree on 165 too - has a great, ancient feel. Does 166 have a faint checkerboard pattern or just vertical lines? I think I remember a very nice tsuba in this shape with a faint checkerboard pattern in one of the famous old collections. I'll try to find it. I've been on vacation, so I'm really looking forward to looking back at all the treasures that you've posted while I was away!
  23. Dear Bob, 159 looks like very good work. I think the two sukashi are two Matsukawa-bishi Mon (family mon in the shape of pine bark with three diamonds which stand for reliability, integrity and success). The inlay looks fantastic. I've always wondered about the potential for galvanic corrosion when joining metals like brass/copper and iron (even without strong electrical or magnetic fields), so I've asked many "experts" and craftspeople but never received a satisfactory answer... Your tsuba does not appear to have any such corrosion, so I guess that it's not a problem or they had some way of addressing it.
  24. Tanto54

    Tsuba opinions

    Hi Mark, the kanji look like Shogyoku, but I can't find any tsuba makers with a matching mei (in Saotome or anywhere else). The "Sho" may be incorrect (hard to see). Also wondered if the pine bark mon shapes were original or not and even if they are places where inlay has fallen out. Can you tell in hand?
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