This chapter is the detailed part of chapter 29|Main 7 Areas Among Sin-To Sword (part B). In Chapter 29, the location 1 to 7 was discussed but here the location 1,2,3,7 and 8 will be discussed. Please read chapter 29 before reading this chapter.
- Settu (摂津) at Osaka (大阪 )
Settu Osaka has many well-known swordsmiths, like Kawachi-no-Kami Kunisuke (河内守国助), Tsuda Echizen -no-Kami Sukehiro (津田越前守助広), Inoue Shinkai (井上真改), Ikkanshi Tadatsuna (一竿子忠綱), etc. The main characteristic of Settsu Osaka sword is very pretty fine Jitetsu (surface), almost no pattern, no design flat like surface. The below two photos are Settsu sword.
Ikkanshi Tadatsuna from Sano Museum Catalogue. Permission granted to use.
Ikkanshi Tadatsuna is famous for his carvings. His father was Omi-no-Kami Tadatsuna. Ikkanshi Tadatsu is the second generation of Omi-no-kami Tadatsuna. Therefore he is also known as Awataguchi Omi-no-Kami Fujiwara Tadatsuna as you see on the Nakago above photo. The characteristics of his sword are: Longer Kissaki and Sakiziri. Wide tempered line with Nie. Osaka Yakidashi. O-Notare with Gunome. On the illustration above, one Gunome between Notare shows. Boshi Komaru (turn back). Very fine Ji-Hada almost no pattern on the surface.
Inoue Shinkai (井上真改) from Sano Museum Catalogue. Permission granted to use.
Inoue Shinkai is the second generation of Izumi-no-Kami Kunisada who was the student of Kunihiro. The characteristics of his sword are: Osaka Yakidashi, gradually wider tempered line toward the top, O- Notare, Deep Nie, Fine Ji-Hada is so fine almost no design on the surface.
3. Musashi (Edo)
We find many famous swordsmiths in Edo also. They are 1st, 2nd, 3rd generations of Yasutsugu(康継), Kotetsu(虎徹), Noda Hankei (野田繁慶), Hojoji Masahiro (法成寺正弘), etc. Two photos below are swordsmiths from Musashi.
Yasutsugu From Sano Museum Catalogue. Permission granted to use
Characteristics of Yasutusgu: Shallow curvature. Chu-Gissaki (medium Kissaki). Hamon is wide Notare, Midare, O-Gunome (sometimes same shape Gunome line up side by side). The trace of Soshu-Den and Mino-Den shows in his work. Woodgrain mixed with Masame on Shinogi-Ji.
Kotetsu From Sano Museum Catalogue. Permission granted to use.
Here is the famous Kotetsu. The formal name is Nagasone Okisato Nyudo Kotetsu (長曽祢興里入道虎徹). Kotetsu started to make sword around 50 years old, until then, he was an armor maker. The characteristics of Kotetsu: Shallow curvature and wide width. Wide tempered line with Nie. Around Machi area, the Hamon is small Irregular, the upper part becomes wide Suguha like Notare. Fine Nie. Boshi is Komaru with short turn back. Ji-Hada is fine wood grain, burl. Sometimes, O-Hada (black iron show through) shows at the lower part (right above Machi) of the sword. The illustration above shows the thick (or wide) borderline between Ha and Ji consisted of Nie ( in other words, wide hazy not clear line). This is Kotetsu’s characteristic. Once you see it you will remember.
7. Satsuma (Kyushu)
Miyahara Mondonosho Masakiyo (宮原主水正正清) From Sano Museum Catalogue, permission granted to use.
Miyahara Mondonosho Masakiyo was highly regarded by Shimazu family of Satsuma Han (Satsuma domain). Later he was chosen to go to Edo by Shogun Yoshimune to forge Shogun’s sword. The characteristics of Mondonosho Masakiyo: Well balanced sword shape. Shallow curvature. Wide and narrow Hamon with squarish Hamon and pointed Hamon mixed as in the photo above. He engraved Aoi crest (the hollyhock crest of the Tokugawa family) on Nakago.
Yamashiro Daijo Fujiwara Kunikane (山城大掾藤原国包 ) From Sano Museum Catalogue, Permission granted to use.
Fujiwara Kunikane is from Sendai. He was favored by Date Masanune (伊達政宗) and was sent to Kyoto to study sword making. It is said he was the descendant of the Yamato Hosho group. Characteristics of Fujiwara Kunikane: The shape of the sword is like Ko-To with Funbari (refer 6 |Heian Period Swords). Narrow width with high Shinogi. Narrow tempered line with Chu-Suguha Hotsure (frayed medium straight tempered line). Niju-Ha and Uchinoke shows. Boshi is Yakizume (10 | Middle Kamakura Period — Bizen School（鎌倉中期備前伝）). Ji-Hada shows neatly arranged Masame. Sometimes mistaken as the Yamato Hosho (大和保昌) of Ko-To Yamato-Den.