The red circle indicates the time we discuss in this section
The later part of the Edo period is called Bakumatsu. See the circled area of the timeline above. Swords made during this time are called Shin Shin-to. They are also called Fukko-to (復古刀: revived sword). Fukko-to copied the shape, Hamon, Boshi, and other features of the Ko-to and Shin-to swords. The characteristics of Shin Shin-to (新々刀) and well-known swordsmiths are those below.
The Characteristics of Shin Shin-to
- Katana, Wakizashi, and Tanto all tend to be similar to or copy of the Ko-to and Shin-to in shape.
- Many swords often have Hi or detailed engravings.
- One swordsmith would make more than one style swords like Soshu Den, Bizen Den, and Shin-to style together.
- Often shows Katai-ha.
- Weak (not tight) Nioi.
- Yakidashi (2 to 3 inches above Machi) is often Suguha (straight line Hamon), even though the rest is irregular Boshi is often irregular Midare.
- Detailed engravings, but more realistic than the previous times.
Well known swordsmiths of Shin Shin-to
- Settsu (Osaka area) ——————Gassan Sadayoshi (月山貞吉) Gassan Sadakazu (月山貞一) Gassan family is famous for detailed carvings.
- Musashi no Kuni (Tokyo area) ————-Suishinshi Masahide (水心子正秀) Minamoto Kiyomaro (源 清麿) Taikei Naotane (大慶直胤) Taikei Yoshitane (大慶義胤) is famous for his carvings.
Minamoto Kiyomaro(源清麿) Once my family possession
- Tosa (四国: Shikoku area) ———————————————— Sa Yukihide (左行秀)
- Satsuma (鹿児島: Kagoshima) ———— Oku Moptohira (奥元平) Namino Hira (波平)
Right before the Meiji Restoration, long swords (approx. 3 feet) with no curvature were made. Sa Yukihide (from Tosa) forged this type of sword. Saigo Takamori (西郷隆盛)、 Sakamoto Ryoma (坂本龍馬) owned this type of swords. Both are famous historical characters during the Meiji Restoration, called Meiji Ishin (明治維新). Both of them were a part of the Kin’no-to (勤皇党) group which supported the Emperor and renewed the political system.