Antique Japanese Sword Katana attributed to Naminohira Yasukuni with Hozon Certificate
This blade is attributed to Naminohira Yasukuni (波平安国), who was active during the Genroku era(1688-1704: Mid- Edo period). He belonged to a prestigious school called Naminohira school. Naminohira is also a place located in the Satsuma domain(today’s Kagoshima prefecture). Yasukuni was the 4th son of Yamato no Kami Yasuyuki (大和守安行), who was the 57th head of Naminihira school, being a prominent figure in the region. Yasuhiro took over his father’s school and became 58th head of the school. In 1708, he received an honorable official title of Yamato Daijo. His son was Yasutsune, who was 59th head of Naminohira school. One of Yasukuni’s apprentices was Ichinohira Yasuyo, who is one of the most famous sword makers in Satsuma province.
Naminohira(波平) was one of the most influential schools in Satsuma domain founded by a Yamato-Den swordsmith Masakuni(正國) during the late-Heian period(Late 12th century). They were known for having their smith name with one of these letters, 行(Yuki) or 安(Yasu).
The Naminohira swords were cherished among Samurais in the marine army, mainly because the name Naminohira(波平) means “Tides are quiet.” in Japanese.
The origin of the name Naminohira dates back to the school’s foundation. It is said that the founder Masakuni was able to calm the waves by dedicating his sword to the sea when his school from Yamato sailed to live in Satsuma domain. Since then, he began to use the title “Naminohira Yukiyasu (波平行安)” – “Tides are quiet, ’tis an easy way.” From the late-Heian period until the end of Samurai times(Late 19th century), the Naminohira school had kept the mastership for a thousand years.
Yasukuni was a swordsmith from the Naminohira school back in the mid-Edo period. He would like to apply the authentic Yamato-Den techniques in his craft. His work appears to have features that derive from Yamato-Den; razor-edge sharpness and exceptional strength.
Satsuma province had many Samurais and smiths back in the day, making it difficult for most smiths to keep their jobs through the era. However, the Naminohira school always remained prominent in the evolving sword industry – and their work is still beloved by Katana fans to date.
It is appraised as a Hozon Token(保存刀剣) issued by NBTHK(Nihon Bijutsu Touken Hozon Kyokai:日本美術刀剣保存協会). This authentication paper was only given to authentic Japanese swords, well preserved and high quality with artistic value.
Cutting Edge Length(Nagasa)：73.1 cm (28.8 inches)
Curvature(Sori)：1.1 cm (0.43 inches)
The crystalline structure which forms along the cutting edge of a blade as a result of the hardening process
visible steel surface pattern created by folding and hammering during forging process
Nakago：Nakago is the tang of the Japanese sword.
Japanese swordsmiths left the black rust on the tang because it prevents red rust while the tang is in its handle. And the discoloration of the tang was created over time, and it is a great indicator for a Japanese sword specialist to estimate when the sword was forged.
Koshirae: Koshirae is the mounting of the Japanese sword. There are several parts that consist of Koshirae such as Saya(Scabbard), Tsuka(Handle), Tsuba(Handguard).
Fuchi-Kashira：A pair of matching sword fittings that cover the upper and bottom parts of its sword hilt.
This Fuchi Kashira is coated with silvery paint. It has an uneven surface with a stone-like texture. Based on the design of other sword mountings of this Koshirae (we will mention later), this rough surface finish, which appears covered with stones, seems to represent the surface of a dragon’s body.
Tsuka and Menuki：Tsuka is the handle of the Japanese sword and Menuki is its decoration.
You would find a figure of a dragon on each side of this handle. These dragons’ eyes, beards, and claws are painted golden. This coloring makes an elegant color contrast of black and gold on this Menuki.
If you focus on the lower side dragon’s hand, you would find that this dragon brings a ball-shaped object in its hand. This item is called the Nyoi Houju (如意宝珠, Cintāmaṇi), a fantasy jewel that fulfills any desire and gives out treasure, clothes, food, and drinks. In addition, it heals illness and suffering, removes evils, purifies muddy water, and prevents disasters. It is said this magical item is taken from the brain of the dragon king.
Tsuba and Habaki：Tsuba is the handguard for the Japanese Sword and Habaki is the equipment to make the blade not touch its scabbard inside. It prevents the blade from getting rusty and chipped.
*Please keep in mind that silver foil is partially peeled but we can have it fixed so that it is less noticeable.
The same as the Menuki, this Tsuba’s design also incorporated a dragon pattern. Furthermore, it is a combination of dragon and cloud patterns. Initially, the dragon is an imaginary creature found in ancient foreign traditions and myths. Furthermore, it is regarded as a symbolic beast of auspicious signs. Its body is likened to nine animals: antlers are deer, the head is a camel, eyes are demons, the neck is a snake, the belly is the Mizuchi (蛟, a mythical animal in Japan that looks like a snake and has a horn and four legs), scales are fish, claws are falcons, palms are tigers and ears are cows. The dragon was thought to reign at the top of all animals because of its odd appearance. There are various sword mountings with dragon designs. It shows that many Samurai warriors cherished this dignified beast motif.
Clouds bring rain and snow, and their movements significantly affect the day’s weather. Due to its supernatural power, a theory says that gods, spirits, and dragons dwell in the clouds. In Japan, a religion worships the dragon as a water god. It might be one of the reasons why the combination of dragon and cloud motifs is often seen even in sword mountings.
Saya： Saya is the scabbard for the Japanese sword.
Authentication Paper：NBTHK Hozon Certificate for the blade (No. 3024942)
NBTHK, also known as Nihon Bijutsu Touken Hozon Kyokai (the Society for the Preservation of the Japan Art Sword), is one of the oldest Japanese sword appraising organizations in modern-day Japan. They authenticated the blade on Nov 9th in the 3rd year of Reiwa (2020). They appraised it as Hozon Touken, the blade worth preserving for Japanese society. The purchaser will receive this original certificate as well. We can also translate what is written into English and make a PDF file for your record if you request.
Registration Number : Kochi 1786
The Board of Education in Kochi prefecture issued a registration paper for this sword . It is called Jyu Token Rui Torokusho(銃刀剣類登録証). Bunkacho(The Agency for Cultural Affairs) acknowledges a Japanese sword with this paper as a work of art.
The sword needs to be traditionally hand-forged and made of Tamahagane carbon steel to be registered in the system. With this paper, its owner in Japan can legally own an authentic Japanese sword. Based on this registration number, we will apply for its export permit.
This paper will need to be returned to the board of education when the sword is being shipped abroad, but you can receive a copy of it. An English translation of this registration paper is available on request.
Samurai Museum is located in Tokyo, Japan, exhibiting antique artifacts related to the Samurai history. Samurai Museum Shop is the place for those who are interested in Japanese culture and craftsmanship. We deal with antique Samurai swords/armor, traditional crafts made in Japan and so on.
【Japanese Sword& Export Process】
The Japanese swords we deal with are hand-forged edged swords made in Japan. It was made from the traditional carbon steel called TAMAHAGANE(玉鋼). Samurai Museum is familiar with the proper legal procedure for an antique/ authentic Japanese sword to be exported from Japan. We have sent more than 500 Japanese swords for the past three years (～2023) to amazing owners who appreciate its historical value.
Each Japanese sword is registered under the Agency for Cultural Affairs and the Board of Education in Japan. They issue a registration paper for each Japanese sword for its owner in Japan to legally possess it. The Japanese sword with its registration paper means it was traditionally hand-forged in Japan.
To legally export the sword from Japan to other countries, we will have to apply for its permit to the Agency for Cultural Affairs(Bunkacho) and return the original registration paper to the Board of Education. It normally takes around 2-4 weeks to receive this permit after submitting required documents. And we would like you to expect at least 1-1.5 months for your order to arrive at your given address after you ordered. For more detailed info, please click here.
It is allowed for residents in Japan to own authentic Japanese swords without a special license as long as they come with registration papers. Please feel free to contact us if you are a resident of Japan, whether temporarily or permanently. We will also assist you when you leave Japan and need to obtain an export permit. If you live in Japan, please click here before you make a purchase.
We accept payment through Stripe (Credit card), PayPal, Apple Pay or ChromePay, all of which are secure payment methods. Also, you don’t need to make an account on Stripe for the checkout. If you prefer other payment method, please contact us. After confirming your payment, we will apply for an export permit. You may either pay in JPY, USD, AUD, CAD,EUR CHF or GBP. The price is set in Japanese Yen. Prices in other currencies are automatically calculated based on the latest exchange rate.
* If the amount is above 1 million JPY, Stripe or wire transfer will be the only options for payment.
We have shipped authentic Japanese swords to the USA, UK, Canada, Mexico, Germany, France, Hong Kong and Australia. If you don’t live in these countries and like to order, please contact us first before making a purchase. We offer Free International Shipping as long as we can send antique Japanese swords by EMS.
We normally ship by EMS(Express Mail Service) provided by Japan Post. We will send you a tracking number for your order as soon as we hand it to the post office. We will put 100 % insurance on the shipping document without any extra charge. Based on the total amount, there might be a duty tax or other fee for you to pay, depending on the countries. We use package cushioning to protect the item and put it in a PVC pipe, which is one of the most secure packages because of its durability.
It will normally takes 5-14 days for the item to arrive at your given address after we dispatch it. Time of delivery is estimated as accurately as possible by the carrier but does not take into account any delays beyond our control such as by inclement weather, post office holiday seasons.
* If you live in Australia and like to purchase an authentic Japanese sword, please click here to know the detail.
*Please keep in mind that due to the spread of COVID-19, there might be delays in shipping. If you like to know the detail about shipping, please feel free to ask us.
Here is one of the reviews we received from a customer who purchased an authentic Japanese sword from us. For more reviews, please click here.
“My experience overall with the whole process was wonderful. I had many questions about the history and process to purchase these treasures. All my questions were answered very timely and complete. The staff is very knowledgeable and very well versed if any questions do arise.”
【How to make sure the condition】
Please keep in mind that what you are going to purchase is an antique item. We uploaded high resolution photos for you to check its condition thoroughly. If you like to see more photos with different angles, please feel free to contact us. We will be happy to send them to you so that you can make informed decision. It is essential for us to know that you are happy with your choice of a sword. and we are prepared to use the best of our ability to serve you.
【How To Contact Us】
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【The Art of Nihonto (Japanese Sword)】
Samurai’s history is a profound, eloquent legacy of ancient Japanese warriors in which millions of people worldwide are being fascinated. If you like to find out the art of Nihonto, please click here.
【A Guide to Japanese Sword Maintenance】
After acquiring an genuine Japanese sword, it is also important to know how to take good care of it. Here is the special video for you. Mr. Paul Martin, Japanese sword expert, shows you how to give proper maintenance to your sword. By mastering how to clean the Japanese sword, its aesthetic beauty will last forever.
When you purchase a Japanese sword from us, you can get a Free Japanese sword maintenance kit. It comes with four tools(Choji Oil, Uchiko Whetstone Powder, Peg remover, Oil Applicator). By watching the video instruction above , you can enjoy learning how to maintain your Japanese sword while appreciating it. If you have any difficulty assembling the sword or cleaning the blade, you can feel free to contact us.
Thank you for reading all the information on the page. If you have any difficulty choosing the right Japanese sword for you, we will be more than happy to help you find the one that speaks to you the most. Please feel free to contact us.