Categories
Tsuba

Nanban – Galleon

Tsuba: Nanban – Galleon

Signature/mei: unsigned

Material: iron

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimension: (h)77.5.7mm/(w)68.5mm/5.1mm

NBTHK: Guarantee for Hozon (Nanban school)

Custom made kiri box with cushion

Price: €1250 / $1390 / ¥200000

Very well cut Nanban tsuba with the motif of a – perhaps Portuguese – galleon.
Please compare this tsuba to the very similar tsuba shown in the book “Nanban tsuba” by Shigeta Yoshimura.

Tsuba comparison:

“Western Ship”

Figure taken from “Nanban Tsuba” by Shigeta Yoshimura

Categories
Tsuba

Umetada – Budō-mon no tsuba

Tsuba: Umetada “Budō-mon no tsuba”

Signature/mei: Umetada

Material: shakudō ground, various soft metals

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimension: (h)66.8mm/(w)61.1mm/(rim)4.1mm

Custom made box with cushion

NBTHK: Tokubetsu Hozon (2022)

Price: €6250 / $6900 / ¥1000000

About the Umetada School

The Umetada School has existed since the end of the Muromachi period and has worked for the Ashikaga Shogun’s family for several generations. The Umetada masters were very versatile; In addition to swords, they also made habaki, seppa, fuchi kashira and tsuba. The Umetada were also responsible for shortening blades and creating kin-zogan signatures, as well as engraving Horimono.

Menuki, kogai and kozuka are not known from the Umetada, which is mainly because the masters of the Goto school were commissioned with this work.

The design “Budō-mon no zu tsuba” translates to “tsuba with the design of grapevines”, a design, for which some artist of the Umetada school are famous for. A tsuba with a similar design “Budō ni kochō-mon no zu tsuba” (see comparison 1) by Umetada Myōju is even designated as jūyō-bunkazai. Both tsuba have nearly the same size and are made from a polished shakudō plate, in which the grapes are inlaid in a technique called hirā-zōgan.
The shape of the tsuba is tatemaru-gata (oval) with a fukurin (rim) made also from shakudō.
The tsuba has one hitsu-ana and some sukashi elements. Umetada tsuba are known to have sukashi elements, particular also for this design, for example as the ito-sukashi on the tsuba in comparison 4.
The sukashi on the presented tsuba are placed very delicately below the hitsu ana and underline the design very tastefully. A true masterpiece with the signature “Umetada”.
(Please also note this tsuba by Umetada Shigeyoshi.)

Tsuba comparison 1:

“Budō ni kochō-mon no zu tsuba”

Designated as jūyō-bunkazai and signed “Umeta Myōju”

futatsū-mokkōgata, polished shakudō, hira-zōgan, iroe, dote-mimi, one hitsu-ana

Figure taken from “Tosogu Classroom” by Fukushi Shigeo

Tsuba comparison 1:

“Budō ni kochō-mon no zu tsuba”

Figure taken from “Tosogu Classroom” by Fukushi Shigeo

Tsuba comparison 2:

“Budō-mon no zu tsuba”

Signed “Umetada Shichiza”

Early Edo period (1624-1644)

Very simlar to the presented tsuba, but without sukashi and in futatsū-mokkōgata

Figure taken from “Tosogu no Kansho II”

Tsuba comparison 2:

“Budō-mon no zu tsuba”

Figure taken from “Tosogu no Kansho II”

Tsuba comparison 3:

“Budō-mon no zu tsuba”

Signed “Umeta Myōju”

futatsū-mokkōgata, polished suakahira-zōganiroedote-mimi, one hitsu-ana

Simlar to the jūyō-bunkazai tsuba shown above but in suaka instead of shakudō

Figure taken from “Tosogu Classroom” by Fukushi Shigeo

Tsuba comparison 3:

“Budō-mon no zu tsuba”

Figure taken from “Tosogu Classroom” by Fukushi Shigeo

Tsuba comparison 4:

“Budō-dana ni budō no zu tsuba”

Signed “Umeta Shichizaemon Tachibana Shigeyoshi saku”

tatemaru-gata, polished shakudō, ito-sukashi, hira-zōgan, iroe, shakudō-fukurin, two hitsu-ana

Figure taken from “Tosogu Classroom” by Fukushi Shigeo

Categories
Tsuba

Chrysanthemum – Saotome

Tsuba: Saotome Chrysanthemum

Signature/mei: unsigned

Material: iron

Era/jidai: Momoyama

Dimension: (h)92.7mm/(w)93.1mm/(rim)6.1mm

NBTHK: Hozon (2022 – Mumei Saotome)

Kiri box

Price: €1600 / $1750 / ¥250000

Large Saotome tsuba with no hitsu ana. Due to the size above 9cm and with the typical Saotome Chrysanthemum design with no hitsu ana, it could have been made during the Momoyama period.

Categories
Menuki

Momoyama Goto – Dragons

Menuki: Dragons

Signature/mei: mumei

School: Goto (mainline)

Material: gold

Era/jidai: early Edo

Dimensions left in mm: 32.2 x 14.6 x 5.3

Dimensions right in mm: 33.6 x 13.6 x 5.6

Custom made kiri box

NBTHK: Hozon (2009) – Mumei Goto (Momoyama)

Price: €4100/ $4500 / ¥650000

The term “Momoyama-Goto” covers the fourth to seventh generation of the main Goto line, also called the Shirobei line. So here we see menuki that may have been made by Goto Kojo (4th), Goto Tokujo (5th), Goto Eijo (6th) or Goto Kenjo (7th).
What makes this menuki with dragons so interesting and sets it apart from other dragon motifs is the very fine, accentuated carving of the two dragons, which is very detailed. If we just look closely at the number of scales (or casing), these two are much better and more detailed compared to other Kaga Goto or even mainline Goto designs.
These menuki are also slightly higher compared to other major works, which makes the dragon appear more alive. The two appear also very lively due to the deep carvings, perhaps not as austere as one would expect from a mainline Goto design. It’s really fun to watch as the dragon sticks out its tongue and holds the captured pearl in its claws. What is impressive is that these menuki, which were certainly mounted (recognizable by the slightly rubbed highest point), are in such great condition and all details such as spines, claws, tail and tongue are still preserved.
Further research is required for these menuki to further pinpoint the Goto master who made them. Since it is now the Year of the Dragon, it is time to release the dragon into the wild.


Categories
Accessoires

Katana Kake – red laquer Peonies

Katana Kake – Peonies

For 7 swords, red laquered

Era/jidai: late Edo / early Meiji

Dimension: (h)58.5cm/(w)47.5cm/(d)26.5cm

Price: €3200 / $3500 / ¥500000

Consisting of five interlocked parts, decorated in relief in red carved lacquer. Decorated with peonies on the front and stylized flowers on the sides. Otherwise everything is based on small, fine patterns.

Please not this auction comparison of a similar tachi mount.

Categories
Accessoires

Katana Kake – Antler

Katana Kake – Antler

For 2 swords

modern

origin unknown

Price: €350 / $390

Categories
Accessoires

Collectors box

Collector box (for tsuba etc.)

No interior

5 compartments

Mother of pearl inlays

Price: €490 / $540

Categories
Fuchi Kashira

Takasa Eiju – Daisho – Bathing crows

Fuchi Daisho: “Bathing crows”

Signature/mei: Takase Eiju with kao 高瀬栄寿

Material: shibuichi, shakudo, gold

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dai Dimension: 38.5mm x 23.3mm x 13.8mm

Sho Dimension: 37.6mm x 22.7mm x 13.2

Custom made kiri box with cushion

NBTHK: Tokubetsu Hozon (2022)

Price:  €1590 / $1750 / ¥250000

Daisho fuchi made by the Mito artist Takase Eiju, who was a disciple of a famous craftsman of the Mito Tradition, Taizan Motozane. Eiju was active in the late Edo period.
Recently, a tsuba belonging to Takase Eiju was recognized as juyo by the NBTHK.


Please also note this kogai by Eiju.

Please also note this fuchi kashira by Eiju.

These two fuchi form a daisho due to their similarity and slightly different sizes. Both baseplates are made from beautiful dark brown shibuchi and feature a hammered finish, a technique called (tuchime). Since the crows are made of shakudo, they stand out clearly from the baseplate. Details of the birds, such as eyes, legs and claws, are finely accentuated in gold.
In addition, large leafless trees can be seen with a stream or river flowing beneath them, creating larger waves. One of the crows bathes in it while the other crow watches.
Upon closer inspection, you can see that the crow’s body is smoothly modeled and has pronounced feathers on the wings and tail.


Categories
Fuchi Kashira

Takase Eizui – Mountain scenery

Fuchi Kashira: Mountain scenery

Signature/mei: Takase Eizui with kaō, 高瀬栄随

Material: shibuichi, gold, copper

Era/jidai: late Edo

Kashira Dimension: 34.4mm x 20.3mm x 9.3mm

Fuchi Dimension: 37.8mm x 22.9mm x 13.5

Custom made kiri box with cushion

NBTHK: Hozon (2016)

Price:  €1590 / $1750 / ¥250000

Takase Eizui was the son (and pupil) of Takase Eiju, who was a disciple of a famous craftsman of the Mito Tradition, Taizan Motozane. Takase Eizui was active during the late Edo Period.

This fuchi kashira has been well crafted using techniques called takabori zogan and iroe, related to the mito bori technique, named after the “Mito” region from which Eizui came.
The landscape consists of a coastal slope with a large house or temple between large and steep rocks and a pagoda in the middle of a forest. We also see large pine trees and the traveler on his horse with a companion or servant walking. It’s really amazing to see how much detail you can find in this work. Starting from the well-crafted base plate from which the stones are carved, to the gold and copper colored details. To enlarge the proverbial canvas Eizui was working on, he also used both sides of the kashira, expanding the waves of the sea on one side and the mountains on the other.

Recently, a tsuba belonging to his father Takase Eiju was recognized as juyo by the NBTHK.
Please also note this kogai by his father Eiju. Or this fuchi kashira by Eiju.

This fuchi kashira has been awarded hozon by the NBTHK and comes with a custom-made kiri box. I expect it will also be awarded to tokubetsu hozon due to the excellent craftsmanship.

Categories
Tsuba

Goto Tsunemasa Hana-ikada

Tsuba: Goto Tsunemasa- “Hana-ikada no zu tsuba”

Signature/mei: Goto Tsunemasa (kao)

Material: iron, gold

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimension: (h)78.2mm/(w)75.7mm/(rim)4.2mm

Kiri box

Price: €785 / $870 / ¥125000

On this nearly round (maru gata) tsuba, carved from the iron plate using a technique called sukidashi-bori, we see cherry blossoms with touches of gold (iroe) and also a raft.

This design is called “Hana-ikada no zu tsuba,” which means “flower raft,” giving us a reference to the season of spring.
The flower raft motif alludes to the romantic atmosphere when rafters are accompanied by cherry blossoms falling into the river in spring, a scene for which the rivers in Kyoto such as Ogigawa, Katsuragawa and Hozugawa were particularly famous.

Categories
Tsuba

Umetada Shigeyoshi – Tsudagawa River

Tsuba: Umetada Shigeyoshi – “Tsudagawa River”

Signature/mei: Josyu Nishijin Ju Umetada Tachibana Shigeyoshi

Material: iron, gold

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimension: (h)83.9mm/(w)77.8mm/(rim)4.0mm

Custom made box with cushion

NBTHK: Hozon (2022)

Price: €1250 / $1390 / ¥200000

Located near Nara, the Tsudagawa River has long been known for its colorful fall foliage. On the slightly oval (naga maru gata) shaped tsuba, we can see the river waves and some leaves flowing on it, carved from the iron plate using a technique called sukidashi-bori. Parts of the leaves and some gout drops are carefully colored in gold.
Nara is not far from Kyoto where the Umetada school was located, which makes this tsuba so interesting as it is signed by Umetada Tachibana Shigeyoshi. He chose a subject close to his own workshop.

Depending on the literature (Haynes, Fukushi Shigeo), there were three or four Umetada artists who signed “Shigeyoshi”. Therefore, it is difficult to determine exactly who made this tsuba. Some similar works can be found at The Met or in the Boston Museum!

The Umetada School

The Umetada School has existed since the end of the Muromachi period and has worked for the Ashikaga Shogun’s family for several generations. The Umetada masters were very versatile; In addition to swords, they also made habaki, seppa, fuchi kashira and tsuba. The Umetada were also responsible for shortening blades and creating kin-zogan signatures, as well as engraving Horimono.

Menuki, kogai and kozuka are not known from the Umetada, which is mainly because the masters of the Goto school were commissioned with this work.
(Please also note this masterpiece tsuba by Umetada.)

Josyu Nishijin Ju Umetada Tachibana Shigeyoshi
Categories
Menuki

Kyo Kinko – Hyōtan Namazu

Menuki: Hyōtan Namazu

Signature/mei: mumei

School: Kyo Kinko

Material: shakduo, gold

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimensions: (left): 33.3mm x 12.0mm

Dimensions (right): 31.0mm x 14.2mm

Custom made kiri box

NBTHK: Hozon (2015) – “Hyōtan Namazu” – Kyo Kinko

Price: €1375 / $1500 / ¥220000

These menuki show the motif “Hyōtan Namazu“, a catfish, which is made here from shakudo. His eyes, as well as the pumpkin bottle, are inlaid in gold.

The Ōnamazu (大鯰 ‘giant catfish’) is a fictional, giant catfish (namazu) that was supposedly the cause of earthquakes in Japan.

There are various variations of the “Hyōtan Namazu” motif, which can literally be translated as “bottle gourd catfish”. Sometimes a person is shown climbing onto a catfish with that (pumpkin) bottle or “riding” on the catfish. Another time a monkey is depicted instead of a human.

All of these “Hyōtan Namazu” motifs allude to the question or the Zen riddle of whether you can catch a catfish with a bottle.

The motif is a metaphor for the fact that even seemingly impossible tasks can be achieved through personal effort.

This motif was probably created in Ōtsu on Lake Biwa during the Edo period, the so-called Ōtsu-e colored woodblock prints, on which this metaphor was often used.

Ōtsu on Lake Biwa was the last stop on the Tōkaidō and Nakasendō highways before reaching the capital Kyoto.

To come back to the menuki, they also come from a studio in Kyoto and therefore have a Hozon certificate to “Kyo Kinko” (soft metal from Kyoto).

Categories
Menuki

Ko-Goto “Millet”

Menuki: Millet

Signature/mei: mumei

School: Ko-Goto

Material: shakduo, gold

Era/jidai: Momoyama

Dimensions: (left): 36.1mm x 12.7mm

Dimensions (right): 35.6mm x 13.1mm

Kiri box

NBTHK: Hozon (2021) – “Millet” – Ko Goto

Price: €950 / $1050 / ¥150000

The term “Ko-Goto” covers the first three generations of the Goto main line, also called the Shirobei line. So here we see menuki, which may have been made by Goto Yujo (1st generation), Goto Sojo (2nd generation) or Goto Joshin (3rd generation) who lived and worked in the Momoyama period.
The age of the menuki is also noticeable in the slightly rubbed gold plating, through which the base material, here shakudo, stands out. However, this is not a disadvantage; on the contrary, it contributes to the Japanese aesthetic. It also shows that these menuki were mounted on a tsuka and where they were used.
The design of “Millet” also points to a work by Goto.

Categories
Tsuba

Nara- Swallows and Waves

Tsuba: Nara – “Swallows and Waves”

Signature/mei: Nara (kao)

Material: brass, shakudo, gold, copper

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimension: (h)76.2mm/(w)73.8mm/(rim)4.7mm

Custom made box with cushion

NBTHK: Tokubetsu Hozon (2018)

Price: €3150 / $3500 / ¥500000

The Nara school of kinko tosogu artist

Along with the Yokoya and Goto schools, the Nara school is one of the three major kinko schools. They represent some of the most important schools of kinko tosogu. Later schools are often modifications or developments of these main schools.
The school produced many students who were allowed to bear the name “Nara”. (Like this tsuba we see here in front of us.) Today we assume 7 generations of the mainline Nara school, wich in turn also had many students.
The founder of the Nara School is said to have been Nara resident Toshiteru (1579-1629), but unfortunately not all details from this period have been preserved.
Incidentally, the Nara artists were officially employed by the Bakufu under the title of “metal craftsmen” (kazari-shi), in contrast to the Goto artists who were employed as engravers (horimono-shi).
Many famous artists emerged from the Nara School, to name just one: Nara Toshinaga. But big names like “Tuchiya Yasuchika” and “Hamano Shozui” were also students of Nara artists and were influenced by this school.

As is often the case, the patina on this brass tsuba has developed really nicely. The raised edge beautifully frames the scene of two swallows flying over waves. As if we were looking at a picture painted by this Nara school artist. Both swallows are decorated in shakudo with some fine copper and gold accents. Gold was also used for the gout drops created by the waves – reaching up to the ura side. The overall impression is clearly a Nara school tsuba. Luckily the tsuba is also signed with “Nara” and “kao”.

Categories
Tsuba

Kaga – Tomomasa – Crickets and Cage

Tsuba: Kaga – “Autumn insects with cage”

Signature/mei: Tomomasa Miyazuomi (kao)

Material: shakudo, gold

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimension: (h)74.5mm/(w)70.6mm/(d)4.5mm

Custom made box with cushion

NBTHK: Hozon (2021)

Price: €2500 / $2800 / ¥400000

Tsuba from the school – or the region – Kaga, which when they where signed, are difficult to find, as most of tsuba or kodogu from Kaga was left unsigned. This tsuba shows a famous design: “Autumn insects with cage”. During the Edo period, some artists called “Tomomasa” were active in Kaga. Further research is needed to determine which Tomomasa made this tsuba and, more importantly, when.

The shape is a perfect mix of maru gata (round) and nara maru gata (oval) as it is slightly larger in height than in width, which is not noticeable at first glance but gives a more aesthetic taste to the overall impression. Even though it is more of a medium sized tsuba, the seppa dai is raised to the height of the rim, creating a small valley in the middle of the tsuba, making it very interesting to look at.
While the decorative design elements are placed more on the right side, the upper left part remains untouched. This is of course intentional, because if the tsuba would be mounted on a sword, the sword wielder’s thumb would rest here.
I don’t want to say that it was the thumb of a samurai: Since this tsuba was made during the Edo period, it is very likely that this tsuba was carried by a marchant. During the Edo period, merchants became a wealthy class and were allowed to carry a short sword, the wakizashi. Due to the size of this tsuba, it is surprisingly suitable for a wakizashi.
Also the workmanship and the materials used for this tsuba suggest, that it would have been an expensice tsuba. As samurai became poorer and poorer during the Edo period, it seems that is was the tsuba of a merchant or a samurai of higher rank.
Ultimately, the tsuba could have been a gift for simple viewing pleasure. Tomomasa put his signature on the backside, so that the omote is not disturbed when the tsuba is looked at when it’s not mounted.
But there are some traces near the nakago hitsu ana that the tsuba in fact was mounted and used. As there are no tagane, I think the tsuba was mounted only on one sword, maybe even custom made to fit perfectly without further need of modification.

The subject of the tsuba is “Autumn insects with cage”. In Japan it was common to catch cicadas and place them in a special cage, so that the sounds the cidaca create, it’s music, could be enjoyed.
On the omote we see two cicadas, inlayed with gold in a technique called hira zogan – “flat inlay”. The cicada itself is engraved with fine kiriba.
It’s legs and antennas, as well as the cage, are inlayed in very small hairline carving, which is common and typical for kaga tsuba. Also some blades of grass are depicted in the very same technique.

Finally, we come to the ura side where also a bit of grass is visible along with the artist’s signature:

Categories
Tsuba

Myochin Katsumi – Shishi Face

Tsuba: Engraved face of Shishi

Signature/mei: Myochin Katsumi Ki no Munenaga

Material: iron

Era/jidai: very late Edo (1866)

Dimension: (h)81.6mm/(w)81.3mm/(d)2.4mm

Custom made box with cushion

Price: €1700 / $1900

Unique and rare, very finely chased iron Myochin tsuba with the face of a grimly smiling Shishi. On the ura we find a very extensive signature:

Keio ninen hachi gatsu kichijitsu
Myochin Katsumi Ki no Munenaga saku
Sakamoto Naokata Ouju
On a lucky day in the eight month of Keijo two (1866)
Myochin Katsumi Ki no Munenaga saku
Made on behalf of Sakamoto Naotaka

The roots of the Myochin family can be traced back to the Heian period. During this time – and many generations later – the Myochin made armor for samurai and bridles for horses. It is amazing that the Myochin masters continued to be active for many generations until the end of the Edo period, producing iron works such as this unusual tsuba.

Categories
Tsuba

Edo Higo

Tsuba: Edo Higo

Signature/mei: unsigned/mumei

Material: iron, gold, silver

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimension: (h)82.1mm/(w)77.5mm/(d)4.9mm/(rim)3mm

Box with cushion

NBTHK: Hozon – Edo Higo

Price: €950 / $1050

Edo Higo iron tsuba with diversely artistic designs in gold on the omote and silver on the ura side. The two hitsuana also are typical for a work by Higo artists.

Categories
Tsuba

Tanaka-Toryusai

Tsuba: Tanaka-Toryusai school

Signature/mei: mumei

Material: iron, shakudo, gold

Era/jidai: late Edo

Form: slightly mokko

Dimensions: 7.1 cm x 6,4 cm x 0.45 cm (rim)

Kiri box

NBTHK: Hozon – “Sugi Tree” – Toryusai school

Price: €1690 / $1870 / ¥250000

XXL-Picture

This tsuba is a fine example of the famous Tanaka-Toryusai school.

Sometimes the design on tsuba can be sort of an abstract type. Then there are tsuba which depicts a design in the fullest of possibilities. And then there are tsuba, where you have to use your imagination to see the “whole picture” as parts of the design are missing or – more precisely – left out due to the limited space on these little works of art.

Here we have such a piece.

At first glance we see a tree placed to the very right carved in bold kiriba into the fine iron plate. At the base of the tree grow some bushes inlayed in shakudo and coloured with gold. A large branch of the tree, also in kiriba, reaches over the nakago ana far into the left side of the tsuba. The left side of the tsuba is mostly empty just balanced by the one hitsuana.

Just above the hitsu ana – inlayed in shakudo and accented with gold – we see a bird flying in front of the tree’s leaves. The leaves are represented as inlaid dots of gold.

The bird and the undergrowth together with the tree create two depth layers.

Then our gaze falls on the bottom of the tsuba. There is a larger sukashi (and a smaller one). The area around the sukashi is coloured in silver. But parts of the sukashi don’t make to the other side. So the larger suksashi isn’t so big after all and “inside” the sukashi we see something in silver…

The moon! The moon is just rising behind the tree, illuminating the area “around the sukashi” in soft moonlight. That the moon is placed behind the tree is only possible because the tree is on a very steep mountain, which of course we have to imagine. Such steep mountain landscapes are often found in Japan.

The moon adds another depth layer to the tsuba, transforming the steep mountain landscape into a late-evening, early-breaking scenery.

The design is repeated on the omote, here the branch of the tree is inlaid in shakudo and coloured with gold.

Simply beautiful and a clever design. A small masterpiece by the Tanaka-Toryusai school.

XXL-Picture

Categories
Tsuba

Sakura

Tsuba: Sakura

Signature/mei: Suzuki Kanju

Material: iron

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimension: 7.23 cm x 6.95 cm x 0.49 cm

Custom made Kiri box with cussion

NBTHK: Hozon (2023)

Price: €1570 / $1750 / ¥250000

XXL-Picture

Many sakura blossoms are carved from the iron base plate. The blossoms extend over the rim and continue on the ura side of this wonderful tsuba. The iron of the plate is a hard and strongly forged iron. Two hitsu ana, the one for the kogai is closed with shakudo.

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Categories
Tsuba

Owari

Tsuba: Owari

Signature/mei: mumei

Material: iron

Era/jidai: Edo

Form: round

Dimensions: 7.5 cm x 0.5 cm

Price: €1570 / $1750 / ¥250000

XXL-Picture

XXL-Picture

XXL-Picture

Categories
Tsuba

Akasaka

Tsuba: Akasaka

Signature/mei: mumei

Material: iron

Era/jidai: Edo

Form: round

Dimensions: 7.7 cm x 0.67 cm

Price: €990 / $1090 / ¥160000

XXL-Picture

A perfectly round tsuba from the famous Akasaka school. This tsuba is from a later generation and thus dates from the Edo period. The iron is carefully forged and develops a beautiful patina that is in good condition. The kogai hitsuana has sekigane from shakudo.

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Categories
Fuchi Kashira

Takase Eiju – Falcon and herons

Fuchi Kashira: Falcon and herons

Signature/mei: Takase Eiju with kao 高瀬栄寿

Material: shakudo nanako, gold, silver

Era/jidai: late Edo

Kashira Dimension: 33.5mm 19.7mm x 10.8mm

Fuchi Dimension: 37.7mm x 23.4mm x 14.6mm

Custom made box with cushion

NBTHK: Tokubetsu Hozon (2023)

Price:  €3500 / $3900

Shakudo nanako fuchi kashira made by the Mito artist Takase Eiju, who was a disciple of a famous craftsman of the Mito Tradition, Taizan Motozane. Eiju was active in the late Edo period.

Recently, a tsuba belonging to Takase Eiju was recognized as juyo by the NBTHK.
Please also note this kogai by Eiju.

Please also note this daisho fuchi by Eiju.

A golden falcon is depicted on the very finely executed shakudo nanako ground of the kashira. We can now observe three golden herons in flight on the fuchi, also on a pristine shakudo nanako surface. The eyes of all birds are inlaid with small shakudo dots and the state of preservation of this fuchi kashira is almost perfect.

As such, this fuchi kashira has just been awarded tokubetsu hozon by the NBTHK and comes with a custom made kiri box.

Takase Eiju  Juyo Tsuba currently on display at the NBTHK Museum in Tokyo
Categories
Koshirae

Dragon-Shishi Daisho

Daisho Koshirae: Dragons and Shishi

Signature/mei: unsigned/mumei

Materials:

  • Tsuba: shakudo, gold
  • Menuki: shakudo, gold
  • Fuchi kashira: shakudo, gold
  • Saya: bown, black, red bamboo shavings

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimensions dai:

  • Saya: 74.4cm
  • Tsuka: 23.9cm
  • Total: 99.0cm

Dimensions sho:

  • Saya: 58.0cm
  • Tsuka: 18.8cm
  • Total: 77.5cm

Price: €7500 / $8300

Elegant Daisho Koshirae with the theme of dragons and shishi.

The condition is very good. The saya for the Dai shows slight signs of wear (see photos).

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Categories
Tsuba

Sakura ji-sukashi

Tsuba: Kagezakuramon – Modern

Signature/mei: unsigned/mumei (Lorenzo Amati)

Material: Iron, ji-sukashi, mokko gata

Era/jidai: Modern ca. 2014

Dimension: 7.7 cm x 7.76 cm x 0.52

Custom kiri box with artist seal,

inner fabrik in blue-green “rokusho” (緑青)

Price: €650 / $720

XXL-Pictures

Lorenzo Amati, a pupil of Ford Hallam, made this modern interpretation of a mokko shaped jisukashi tsuba with sakura design. Two hitsu ana, copper sekigane in a custom handmade box with very nice fabric..

Website of artist/smith: Lorenzo Amati -Tumblr

Facebook of artist/smith: Lorenzo Amati Facebook

Here are some impressions of the tsuba:
(Copyright by Lorenzo Amati)

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Koshirae

Tachi Koshirae

Koshirae for a Tachi

Signature/mei: mumei

Materials:

  • Tsuba: iron, copper
  • Fuchi kashira: copper
  • Menuki: shakudo, gold
  • Saya: Black lacquer

Era/jidai: Edo

Dimensions:

  • Saya: 79cm
  • Tsuka: 25cm
  • Total: 105cm

Papers: NBTHK Hozon

Price: €6800 / $7500

Koshirae for a tachi in good condition with only minor signs of wear. (More photos will follow soon.)

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Koshirae

Handachi Koshirae

Koshirae for a Katana

Signature/mei: mumei

Materials:

  • Tsuba: iron, gold
  • Fuchi kashira: shakudo, gold
  • Menuki: shakudo, gold
  • Saya: Red and black urushi lacquer
  • Tsuka: Black leather

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimensions:

  • Saya: 77.5cm
  • Tsuka: 23.2cm
  • Total: 101.5cm

Price: €3600 / $3999

Koshirae for a long katana in pristine condition without any dents.

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Koshirae

Katana Koshirae

Koshirae for a Katana

Signature/mei: mumei

Materials:

  • Tsuba: iron, gold
  • Fuchi kashira: shakudo, gold
  • Menuki: shakudo, gold
  • Saya: Red and black urushi lacquer
  • Tsuka: Black leather

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimensions:

  • Saya: 77.5cm
  • Tsuka: 23.2cm
  • Total: 101.5cm

Price: €3350 / $3690

Koshirae for a long katana in pristine condition without any dents.

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Menuki

Shonai “Wasps”

Menuki: Wasps

Signature/mei: mumei

School: Shonai

Material: copper, gold, shakukdo

Era/jidai: Edo period

Dimensions: (left): 17.9mm x 18.8mm x 3.6/6.44mm

Dimensions (right): 25.0mm x 15.6mm x 3.5/5.4mm

Kiri box

Price: €690 / $770

These menuki with the design of wasps are made of copper. The wings are covered in gold, while the wasp’s stripes are carefully inlaid with shakudo. A typical work of the Shonai school of swords fitting artists.
Currently, there is no attribution by the NBTHK, but I guarantee at least for hozon.

Categories
Koshirae

Katana Koshirae Kawari Nuri

Koshirae for a Katana

Signature/mei: mumei

Materials:

  • Tsuba: iron, gold and silver nunome
  • Fuchi kashira: iron, gold
  • Saya: Kawari nuri in swirl design
  • Tsuka: Black lacquered same

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimensions:

  • Saya: 76.8cm
  • Tsuka: 25.0cm
  • Total: 102.2cm

Price: €3600 / $3999

The tsuba of this koshirae depicts a dragon in a cloud comes with a NBTHK hozon paper which attributes the tsuba to Wakashiba.

The design of the tsuba matches the fuchi kashira which also show dragons in clouds and continue the workman ship of the tsuba.

This type of finish is called kawari-nuri and the condition is absolutely pristine with no dents or cracks. A truly magnificent and rare piece of craftsmanship in this condition.

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Koshirae

Koshirae for a tanto or wakizashi

Koshirae for small wakizashi or large tanto

Signature/mei: mumei

Materials:

  • Tsuba: shakudo, gold
  • Fuchi kashira: shakudo,
  • Kozuka: shakudo
  • Saya/tsuka: red lacquered

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimensions:

  • Saya: 47.0cm
  • Tsuka: 15.5cm
  • Total: 63.0cm

Price: €3200 / $3500

The tsuba of this koshirae comes with a NBTHK hozon paper which attributes the tsuba to Aizu Shoami.

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Koshirae

Koshirae with engravings

Koshirae for a Wakizashi

Signature/mei:

Materials:

  • Tsuba: shakudo, gold
  • Fuchi kashira: shakudo,
  • Kozuka: shakudo
  • Saya/tsuka: red lacquered, engraved

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimensions:

  • Saya: 39.0cm
  • Tsuka: 14.1cm
  • Total: 53.5cm

Price: €2500 / $2750

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Accessoires

Collector box for tsuba

Collector box for tsuba

Storage for 30 tsuba

5 compartments

Mother of pearl inlays

Price: €990 / $1100

Categories
Koshirae

Wakizashi Koshirae

Koshirae for a Wakizashi

Signature/mei: unsigned/mumei

Materials:

  • Tsuba: copper, shakudo, gold
  • Menuki: shakudo, gold
  • Fuchi kashira: shakudo, copper, gold
  • Kozuka: shakudo, copper
  • Kogai: shakudo, cooper, gold
  • Saya: dark green lacquered with mother of pearl

Era/jidai: late Edo

Dimensions:

  • Saya: 53.5cm
  • Tsuka: 18.1cm
  • Total: 72.5cm

Price: €3900 / $4300

V

ery rare wakizashi koshirae, were the tsuka is wrapped in a black lacquered copper wire, which has been polished again down to the copper core. This is something you come across not often. Along with the other copper fittings and the dark green saya, this koshirae has a tranquil flavor that is believed to have been worn by an older samurai.

The reserved taste with the hut (on the tsuba as well as the complete kashira) and the chickens, which are a symbol of territorial defense, also indicate that the former owner carefully arranged this koshirae to his personal mindset.

Further this koshirae is complete and no fittings are missing. The conditions is superp so only a minimal sign of ware is shown on the lower saya.

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