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Tachi Tsuba Display Question


ckaiserca
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I don't recall ever seeing an NBTHK papered tachi tsuba photographed edge down on the papers. I think I've seen quite a few edge up, but I don't have anything on file to share, and could be mistaken.

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Piers you just beat me to it!

It might depend on the decoration if any - does it make sense in any particular orientation. The problem still remains if the guard is un-decorated or symmetrically decorated. Has anyone seen a display board with the nakago-ana peg pointing down?

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Also, loose Tachi tsuba are rather rare in the overall scheme of things, especially sought after by people for completion of koshirae. As stand-alone decorative works many of them are not particularly exciting compared to the wealth of katana tsuba that were to come later one. In that sense, I cannot imagine a dedicated Tachi tsuba stand. 

 

Just had a quick flick-through of my tsuba books, and it is entirely possible that I may have overlooked something, but I could not find an example of a tachi tsuba photographed in the blade-down position. 

 

As with Dale above, if the design dictates the orientation, then it's a no-brainer. 

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Charles,

 

The real deal is usually displayed edge down, though often they get shown the other way around (blade up) after hitsu have been added (piece has been visibly repurposed).  Piers must be looking in the wrong books - I've got a shelf full of them with actual tachi tsuba generally being shown edge down/its what I'm generally told to do when I shoot them - or did Piers get turned around and mean he couldn't find any shown blade up? 

 

Its kind amusing actually - they tend to re-label tachi tsuba that have been modified with hitsu as something else (if soft metal its often tachishi or even ko-kinkou).

 

Best,

rkg

(Richard George)

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Grrr.... :steamed:  Richard, you know I've now got to go back to the bookshelves again! 

 

Thanks for your input, though. Can you show us a page of what you are describing? Do you have a dedicated Tachi tsuba stand?

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In principal, I vote for edge down.

That being said, I have a ko-tosho that has strong evidence it was worn tachi style.

The NBTHK reflected this in their photo for the papers, showing the tsuba flipped right to left, front to back. However, the cutting edge remained up.

 

On the pure tachi I have had, the cutting edge on the NBTHK papers was presented downwards.

So it depends a bit.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 4/1/2022 at 12:27 AM, Bugyotsuji said:

Grrr.... :steamed:  Richard, you know I've now got to go back to the bookshelves again! 

 

Thanks for your input, though. Can you show us a page of what you are describing? Do you have a dedicated Tachi tsuba stand?

Piers,

My bad, I thought you were talking about how the tsuba were being pictured, not a tsuba display stand to hold tsuba in the "blade down" position.  I apologize - I don't think I've seen an old display stand like that either.  Most of the time when I display them I used the box bottom and its trivial to just turn it upside down or have peg  in the exhibition display made blade down.

Of course, since this display stuff/"box thing" is for the most part a modern phenomenon anyway. They started showing up with the nifty boxes with hakogaki  in ~Meiji and later to spiff the kodogu up for sale/as a gift/etc...  If you look at old Daimyo collections, kodogu they cared about were usually just wrapped in several of pieces of washi, one of which was often the description of what it was/Goto origami/etc (if they were lucky) - often tsuba were just strung like beads on rope or stacked up on a spike in the kura - or just stuffed/klanked together in a bag and left in the bottom of the strong box part of a tansu.

 

Best,

rkg

(Richard George)

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