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sword for id please


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Hi all , This sword is ownwed by an elderly gent who would like to know some more info about it , And so he sent me a couple of pics , one is a written copy of the signature , i will hopefully get a picture of the tang soon , any information would be helpfull , i know he will appretiate it 





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Hello all,


Ok, I'm still trying to learn details here about Nihonto, so bare with me and even humor me if I'm completely off base on my following observations of the above submitted sword.


1.) The patina on the Nakago would have looked ok...if it had not been cleaned.

2.) Same goes for the freshly polished Habaki.

3.) Additionally, the Mei looks to me to have been done very crudely?

4.) The entire Koshirae looks very pedestrian, to the point of almost looking Rebellion era.


How far off am I?



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Dear Mark.


It is always hard to tell what exactly one is seeing in photographs.  I suspect that the nakago has not been cleaned and that what makes it look as though it might have been is simply reflected light.

The same might also be the case for the habaki, which, by the way, seems to be a well fitting and rather nice niju example.

I know what you mean about the mei but not all smiths had a good hand with their calligraphy and given that this is looking like a sue Koto wakizashi one would not expect the best.  If you search for comparable swords you will seee that there is quite a range in this regard.

The koshirae is well past it's sell by date and was always what one might call workmanlike. There are significant differences between it and what most people would understand as Rebellion swords. (If you do a search there are threads discussing these at length).  Typically these would have plain iron fittings, often the proverbial washer menuki, very narrow and thin ito wrapped in a distinctive style, whereas this one falls pretty much into the normal range.


Hope that helps, if not feel free to come back to me, or perhaps Mathew can join in.


All the best.

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Hello Geraint,


Well you see, this is exactly my problem, viewing items solely from online photographs.


I have only viewed in person, the swords I OWN (plus one I did not buy). So that leaves me with pitifully lacking hands on experience/knowledge/observations.


Since I own 1 Wakizashi dated 1692, 1 Katana estimated to be late 1700's, a trashed Wakizashi of indeterminate age and a WWII non-traditionally made Katana, these leave me with a very limited information base to work from.


Woefully lacking I tell you.....I will keep buying books and trying my best to learn what I can from those.


Thanks for the needed enlightenment, it does not go unappreciated.



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This is a field of study that doesn't come quickly, Mark. Even when you have blades in hand, it's often not possible to understand what you're seeing, speaking from my own experience. You just have to keep on studying, & connecting the dots.


Our own Markus Sesko has put some great study material on-line at https://markussesko.com/kantei/ & Darcy's https://yuhindo.com/ may be the best site to study shoshin blades.

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Hi Matthew!

The sori (curvature) on this blade seems pretty dramatic.  Extreme sori—coupled with a rough looking tang—is a potential indicator that a blade has been re-hardened (a blade that’s gone through a fire and lost its hamon may be put through the hardening process again without first re-straightening it, resulting in the existing curvature becoming exaggerated).  Or the sword could well have been made that way, or your camera is distorting the amount of curvature, or I’m just seeing things…

As a rank newbie, my observation is worth very little and if your post was in regards a potential sale I wouldn’t have stuck my nose in at all.  But if you’re just conducting research for a friend, the possibility of “saiha” is one you might explore, even if only to rule it out.  Lots of posts about it on this forum, here’s one:


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