Chapter 62 is a Continued part of Chapter 26 |Over view of Shinto (新刀概要). Please read Chapter 26 before reading this section.
The circle above indicates the time we discuss in this section
The difficulty of Shin-to Kantei
During Ko-to time, one could tell the approximate period when the sword was made by looking at the style and the shape. Several conditions, like how the hamon shows, how the Jigane appears, indicate the approximate Gokaden (五ヶ伝) in Ko-to time. But in Shin-to time, that does not work. Even though among Shin-to time, there were some differences between the early Edo period which is around Keicho (慶長) era, the middle Edo period that is around Kanbun (寛文) era and the later part Edo period that is Genroku era (元禄), but differences are not much. The same is true with Gokaden (五ヶ伝) during the shin-to time. In Ko-to time, Bizen sword smiths forged Bizen characteristic, Yamato sword smiths usually shows Yamato Den characteristic. But Shin-to time, a swordsmith of one area also forged the other area’s Den. For those reasons, it is hard to determine who forged the particular sword. For Shin-to, we study the characteristics of 7 main locations. The next chapters go over them.
Around after the Genroku era (1688 – 1704), some picturesque hamon became a trendy style. Some swordsmiths made picturesque hamon on wakizashi or short swords, and it became very fashionable. Many foreigners loved those swords. Because of that the majority of them were exported outside of Japan around the Meiji restoration time. Very few are left in Japan today.
The swordsmiths those who made picturesque Hamon
Yamashiro area ——————————————-Iga-no-kami Kinmichi (伊賀守金道), Omi-no-kami Hisamichi (近江守久道)
Settsu (摂津) area ———————————Tanba-no-Kami Yoshimichi (丹波守吉道) Yamato-no-Kami Yoshimichi (大和守吉道)
Below are examples. Fuji is the Mount fuji design. Kikusui is chrysanthemum in the water.