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Tsuba: Handguard

Tsuba is a kind of Japanese sword mounting. It was initially equipped with a Japanese sword for practical reasons. It protected its user’s hand when he grabbed his sword or prevented its user’s hand slipping towards the blade part when he hits his enemy. However, Tsuba attached importance to its decorativeness. It had been developed as an essential sword outfit that combines utility and beauty since the Edo period.

Western swords also have guards, but especially since modern times, many of them are connected with handles; therefore, they look different, compared to Japanese handguards, Tsuba. People expected that Tsuba fulfills two roles: practicality to attack enemies and to protect users. And Tsuba shouldn’t have been lost its good looks. In each area, Tsuba had been enhanced its artistry through the efforts and ingenuity of numerous Tsuba artisans.

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