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Updated: 29 May 2024

Awataguchi Omi no kami Tadatsuna
粟田口近江守忠綱

 Hello, world. Welcome to Samurai Museum Shop. Thank you for finding our website. In this post, we would like to introduce one of the prominent Japanese swordsmiths. We hope you will enjoy reading this post. 

 Awataguchi Omi no kami Tadatsuna, also known as the second-gen Tadatsuna, is one of Osaka’s most skilled and popular swordsmiths in the early Edo period (Early-Late 17th century), following Tsuda Sukehiro and Inoue Shinkai. These three sword makers are called Sanketsu of Osaka Shinto.

 The second-gen Tadatsuna was born in 1644 as the first son of the first-gen Tadatsuna, who called himself the descendant of Awataguchi Kunitsuna, a famous swordsmith in the early Kamakura period. Father was born in Hyogo prefecture and forged swords in Ushiroyama castle in Mie prefecture. Eventually, the first-gen Tadatsuna moved to Settsu province (Osaka). 

 The second-gen Tadatsuna’s real name is Asai Mandayu. The swordsmith’s name Tadatsuna lasted three generations, and the second-gen is said to have been the most famous and skilled one. And he was not only excellent at forging swords with different kinds of tempering lines (Hamon) but also excellent at inscribing sculptures on his work.

 The second-gen Tadatsuna first signed as Tadakuni(忠国). According to his remaining work, he started to forge swords in 1672 and kept creating his blades until he was about 80 years old(1716). He received the honorable title of Omi no Kami during the Enpo era(1673-1680). He changed how he signed and started to write Ikkanshi Tadatsuna (一竿子忠綱) after the second year of Genroku era(1689).

 During the early Genroku era, he used 縄 letter instead of 綱 when signing his creation, but after the mid-Genroku era, he used 綱 to sign his blades. Since this blade was signed as 忠縄, we can assume it was forged around the late 17th century. Genraoku period lasted 1688-1704.He kept forging swords for about 50 years in his career.

 One of Tadatsuna’s works is designated as Important Cultural Property of Japan. His swords are Ryuwazamono and Shinto Jyojyo Saku(Highly ranked swords among Japanese sword experts).

 There is one interesting historical incident related to the work of the second-gen Tadatsuna. It was March 24th in the 4th year of Tenmei(1784). Sano Zenzaemon, A direct retainer of Shogun, attacked a son of Tanuma Okitsugu, who was the chief minister of the Edo government. Sano used a wakizashi signed by the second-gen Tadatsuna. The son was eventually died, and Sano was ordered to do Seppuku for his misconduct.

 Interestingly, since this incident happened, the price of rice decreased dramatically after the sharp rise, which suffered many people. And, people started to worship Tadatsuna’s swords as Yonaoshi Daimyojin, a Great God that makes the world a better place. The Tadatsuna’s popularity skyrocketed, and this incident is much talked about when you learn about the work of Tadatsuna. It is said that only noble high-class Samurai could afford to buy a sword forged by the Tadatsuna during the Edo period.

 

We hope you enjoyed reading this post. If you are interested in checking his work, we happen to acquire an antique Katana signed by him. More information is available by clicking the image below.

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