Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
PNSSHOGUN

Why are Mon so rare on Kai Gunto?

Recommended Posts

Something I have noticed over the years is the absolute rarity of Kai Gunto with Silver Mon, I can really only think of a handful I have ever seen listed (online at least). By comparison Shin Gunto with Mon are far more frequently encountered with them over all periods of production. Naturally Kai Gunto are not as common as Shin Gunto but I think this goes beyond just sheer numbers. What is even more unusual is Naval Kyu Gunto can be found with Mon fairly regularly by comparison.

 

Does anyone have any theories about why silver Mon are extremely rare on Kai Gunto? If any members have, or know of, a Kai Gunto with silver Mon please share them here as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have only one Kai Gunto with a silver mon. I will photograph it tomorrow in sunlight. 

My only theory is that Samurai clans were land based warriors, and maritime personal were more traders and merchants. So they may not have needed mons for battle dress, as was the case for Samurai warriors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 It was actually the other way round, as I understand it! After the Meiji restoration the Navy was the senior service and got a lot of old samurai family recruits. The early Imperial army was actually used to suppress the samurai .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Possibly it is simply because of numbers of army officers vs numbers of navy officers?  We see many more army gunto on the market than kaigunto, so we would come across less kai with mon. 

 

Maybe one of our members that specializes in kai would have some insight.  Didn't we have someone who's avatar was "Kaigunto"? (tried a search but came up empty)

 

I have one on a kai with a mumei Muromachi blade.  Ha, now you're going to get flooded with examples!

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave, I can't disagree with you, but following your explanation, surely a Navy officer from a Samurai family would be more inclined to put his clan mon on his sword? 

None of my Minatogawas have mons, and these are senior officers that could afford it. 

Any way here is one of mine, on a family blade. 

a1.jpg

a2.jpg

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Neil. I love that you have only just noticed that mon on the menuki!

 

All the best.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Two fine examples, thank you Neil. I think Mon on the Kashira are even rarer still, most examples seen have them on the Menuki. You also touch on something interesting, considering how many high quality Kai Gunto you have in your collection and only two of them have Mon, if you set aside the same number of equal or comparable quality Shin Gunto how many of them would have Mon? There has to be some determining factor in why we don't see them as often on Kai Gunto, perhaps it is just a matter of numbers but I suspect there is something deeper and more interesting at work.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think most of the Army Gunto with Mon has either Mumei or Older blade, because the newer Showa blade is not from the Samurai family, not considering their family heroism? 
Navy has a wet environment (on the sea or port both)that easies to get the blade rust, and that's the reason they develop stainless steel blade. 
I assume unless the Navy officer works inland headquarters, the other officer service on  the ship or naval base at the port will not bring their old family blade with them, they might carry a stainless blade instead, and sure no Mon need it.

Is that make sense?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56 minutes ago, IJASWORDS said:

Trystan, both the mons are on old blades. One of them has the rare extended drag. 

Yes, that's  why I have that thought"I assume unless the Navy officer works inland headquarters, the other officer service on  the ship or naval base at the port will not bring their old family blade with them, they might carry a stainless blade instead, and sure no Mon need it."

Your two examples could be very possible carried by the officer worked in headquarters inland far from port.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, BANGBANGSAN said:

I think most of the Army Gunto with Mon has either Mumei or Older blade, because the newer Showa blade is not from the Samurai family, not considering their family heroism? 
Navy has a wet environment (on the sea or port both)that easies to get the blade rust, and that's the reason they develop stainless steel blade. 
I assume unless the Navy officer works inland headquarters, the other officer service on  the ship or naval base at the port will not bring their old family blade with them, they might carry a stainless blade instead, and sure no Mon need it.

Is that make sense?

Trystan,

I think mine fits your idea.  It has a leather saya cover over the sharkskin saya, meaning it was likely carried by an officer stationed on land, like one of the islands maybe.

2015-11-30 20.54.27.jpg

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I only have a Kai Gunto koshirae with tsunagi and it happens to be one with a mom on the Menuki, so maybe not that rare after all...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, 16k said:

It happens to be one with a mom

JP,

 

where is the father? 😂🙃

  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

See, Jean, that’s why we should always check after auto correct. mon was unknown and the damn machine corrected it to mom. 🤣

 

Well, that was funny, so I’ll keep it as is! :)

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On another board I kept reading things like "the mum has gone...".  It took a little while to realise "mum" was shorthand for chrysanthemum...  "Mum" is also the Australian equivalent of the USA "Mom".

 

BaZZa.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As usual as soon as you think you haven't seen many examples they crop up everywhere. Here is an interesting Mon on a Kai Gunto: https://www.ebay.com/itm/WW2-Japanese-Navy-Sword/124296718260?hash=item1cf0a967b4:g:TQcAAOSwzLJfNHtq

 

 

 

 

s-l1600.jpg

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi John, 

 

Just saw this myself, very different all right.

 

The paint markings look in very newish compared to most I have seen. And the hot stamp....again very diffefent and very clear/clean.

 

Tsuba could be late war configuration ?  as I cant make out the normal rising sun karge seppa.

 

Do you believe it is all genuine?

 

Rob

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, robinalexander said:

as I cant make out the normal rising sun karge seppa.

 

3 hours ago, robinalexander said:

I must be blind...civilian tsuba with hole for leather retaining clip?

Rob

 

Good point on both Rob!  One normally see that kind of tsuba on a family blade re-fitted for the war.

The hot-stamp (kakihan) is normal for this smith.  All his look that perfect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One of my Kai  gunto has a mon on both menuki ( photo of one attached ) and an identical one on the Kabuto gane . I haven't seen this on a Kaigunto before. Interestingly there is considerable writing under the fuchi some of which reads Kaigun hira maki ( Navy flat binding ) and Mon menuki nyu ( Mon set in menuki )

I can offer no real explanation for John's original observation but agree that the percentage of kai gunto with mon on is  lower than the percentage of Shin gunto with mon on them.

Ian Brooks

DSCF5079.JPG

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That is most rare, even on Shin Gunto, the officer must have been well off. One would imagine the blade and mounts are of fine quality, I don't suppose there is any provenance behind this sword that you know of?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is sad how quickly the provenance of these just disappears . The seller told me that he bought it from the family of a marine who got it on Iwo Jima . Ian

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have only one Kaigunto for all my years of collecting and it has a mon on one of the menuki.  The other menuki has been swindled out so I cannot comment on that one.  There is also a stamp on the seppa against the habaki that I'll include here for interest.  I'll post the entire sword and suite of photos in the "Show us your high quality gunto" thread when I can find the right Round Tuit.

 

BaZZa.

 

619748476_GendaiHizenTadamitsuKaiguntomenuki.thumb.jpg.73004e1888f16820a72d205865f3e150.jpg

 

798472201_GendaiHizenTadamitsuKaiguntoseppa2stamp.thumb.jpg.7a91365fc96acee51bbbbedfc5650794.jpg

Edited by Bazza
spelling error corrected
  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Bazza said:

There is also a stamp on the seppa

Barry,

Richard Fuller says that is the Toyokawa Navy Arsenal stamp on fittings.  It might be, but I'm starting to investigate the idea that it's an actual stamp from a koshirae shop, associated with the arsenal, sure, but a separate shop like Tenzoshan was.  The Toyokawa stamp on blades is an anchor in a circle, not a sakura.

Thanks for the nice example!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, BANGBANGSAN said:

Here is Toyokawa Navy Arsenal stamp on Type 30 bayonet.

Trystan,

Do you have pictures of other arsenals or shops on bayonets like that?  Curious to see if they are shop stamps or arsenal stamps.

 

John, sorry for taking an off-ramp from your post! 

 

Brian,

If you feel it appropriate, we could split this off from my post #27.  Could call it "Toyokawa Anchor in Sakura".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Bruce Pennington said:

Trystan,

Do you have pictures of other arsenals or shops on bayonets like that?  Curious to see if they are shop stamps or arsenal stamps.

 

John, sorry for taking an off-ramp from your post! 

 

Brian,

If you feel it appropriate, we could split this off from my post #27.  Could call it "Toyokawa Anchor in Sakura".

Sorry Bruce, this is the only one type 30 I ever saw has this mark.As far as I know,  many subcontractor make Type 30 bayonet, they are all big company owned factory , no small shops make scabbard or bayonet blade.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...