- Museum number
a) Katana (long sword) blade. Made of steel. Marked and signed. Stored in wooden storage sheath
b) Saya (scabbard). With metal fittings of shishi and peonies in high-relief coloured metal inlay on shakudo. Made of black-lacquered wood.
c) Tsuka (hilt). Part of mounting for katana. With metal fittings of shishi and peonies in high-relief coloured metal inlay on shakudo. Made of wood and ray skin.
d) Tsuba (sword guard). Chrysanthemums, rock by stream and dragonfly in flight; sculpted in high relief. Made of brass, gold, copper, nigurome overlaid sentoku.
- Production date
- 1716-1736 (c.)
Length: 61.40 centimetres (cutting edge)
Curvature: 0.90 centimetres
- Curator's comments
- Harris 2005
This blade is 'shinogi zukuri' with a medium 'kissaki' and round-ended 'bohi' either side of the blade. The tang has one hole and the file marks are 'katte sagari'. The tang tip is shallow 'kurijiri'. The grain is 'itame' with 'jinie'. The 'hamon' is 'gunome' with a deep 'nioiguchi' in dense 'nie', and with 'sunagashi' throughout. The 'boshi' is 'komaru' with 'haki'.
Either of two smiths Kunimasa III and Kunimasa IV, who both used the signature 'Fujiwara Kunimasa', could have produced this sword. Both smiths worked in Musashi Province at about the same time and both belonged to the Hojoji school. Kunimasa III, who was active about the Kyoho era (1716-36), was the first Kunimasa to be retained by the Edo 'bakufu' working in Edo together with the Yasutsugu family and may well have been granted the hollyhock 'mon'. Kunimasa IV, who was active about the Kampo era (1741-44), is recorded as having used the hollyhock 'mon'. Permission for use of the hollyhock 'mon' by the smith was probably approved by the shogun Tokugawa Yoshimune (r. 1716-45) himself, who was renowned for his patronship of swordsmiths.
The mounting (not illustrated) has a black-lacquered scabbard with metal fittings of 'shishi' and peonies in high-relief coloured metal inlay on 'shakudo'. The 'tsuba' is of brass sculpted in high relief with flowers and insects.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Registration number