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Alec

Need help identifying

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Hi,

 

I've just purchased this sword with very limited information and would love to have some details if anyone can make anything of it.

The blade measures 49.5cm with a straight hamon and a signed tang I can make no sense of. 

 

Thanks helping if its possible. 

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Dear Al.

 

Welcome to NMB!  Your sword is a wakizashi, sword between 12" -24".  It is 'out of polish' which means that it has suffered some neglect although in this case there does not seem to be any serious damage.  Whatever you do do nothing to clean it at this stage, just a light oil.

 

It is signed Nio Kiyotsugu, I believe.  That means the smith called Kiyotsugu of the Nio school.  It seems to have lost most of it's hilt fittings so you are now faced with some restoration choices but don't rush, take advice and wait for more suggestions from the other members.  If the signature is genuine, and many are not, then it might be the guy who worked in Choshu in 1688 - 1736.

 

Gets interesting really quickly, doesn't it?

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Welcome, Alec. To confirm th age of the blade, please add a photos showing the completely bare blade, as the sugata (shape) tells us a lot.

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Thanks for the help and quick response so far, it definitely does get interesting quick. Could you elaborate more about the lost hilt fittings if possible? and what I'd need to get a restoration on the go?  I'll get a photo showing the sugata tomorrow.

Thanks again

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Dear Al.

 

A complete hilt looks like this.CIMG1113.thumb.JPG.a41d040d1befaa11675e2ef3a0eb9fe2.JPG

 

I can't see from your images if the fuchi kashira, that's the two metal fittings at the ends of the hilt, are there or not.  The hilt on yours looks to have a full wrap of same, that's the skin covering the wooden core, and to be missing the menuki, the two ornaments under the silk, and the ito the silk wrap.  Also the kozuka and kogatana, the little knife in the saya or scabbard.  These things are a relatively simple fix but you should be prepared to send some money.

 

Much more significant is the blade restoration.  It is especially important that this is not done by anyone who is not properly trained, please ask here for recommendations before you go down this road.  This will not be a cheap thing to do and you may not recoup your money but the satisfaction of doing it may be worth while.

 

Here is a sword in polish, http://swordsofjapan.com/project/tadamitsu-naginatanaoshi/

 

Please don't do anything hasty, just that light oil for the moment.  Please ask if anything is not clear, we are always ready to help.

 

All the best.

 

 

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Tom,

the tsuba (handguard) for your sword looks interesting. If you have a moment please include a pic of its omote and ura (front and back sides). Your plain copper habaki (blade collar) is nice

The ubu (unaltered) aspect of your sword is a big positive. I particularly like the kengyo nakago jiri (pointed end of the tang) in that it may help kantei.  The pronounced funbari is also nice. Reminds me of Keicho (1596-1615) Shinto, but that is just an impression.

 

Regarding restoration, please take it once step at a time. Do not try to improve the blade itself. 

 

Regards,

 

Mark

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Thank you all again for the help so far, apologies it's taken me so long to respond with the rest of the pictures.

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On 9/4/2020 at 5:52 PM, Ken-Hawaii said:

Welcome, Alec. To confirm th age of the blade, please add a photos showing the completely bare blade, as the sugata (shape) tells us a lot.

 

20200908_173108.jpg

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Big fan of your tsuba, looks like it's fluttering in the breeze. Can't say much about the blade as i'm a total rookie. 

 

 

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二王清次 Nio Kiyotsugu, two smithes signed that way, one in Tenbun (1532/1555) and one in Genbun (1763/1741). None are recorded in Fujishiro's Hen. 

 

 

 

 

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