Menu Close

Updated: 21 Jul 2024

SOLD

Antique Japanese Sword Katana Signed by Mito Ju Tokukatsu
NBTHK Hozon Certificate

$10,154.92

DELIVERY TIME: Approx. 1-1.5 months
*We ship from Tokyo, Japan. There might be delay in shipment depending on countries.

SHIPPING TO:
USA, UK, Canada, Mexico, Germany, Hong Kong, France, Finland, Australia
*Please contact us prior to purchase if your country isn’t listed.

INCLUDED: NBTHK Hozon Certificate, Koshirae Case (Decorative Sword Mounting), Shirasaya Case (Plain Wooden Case), Traditional Sword Carrying Bag, Sword Maintenance Kit, Full Exportation Support

Category Katana (SHIN SHIN TO:新々刀)
Age 6th year of the Ansei era (1859)
Swordsmith Mito Jyu Tokukatsu (水戸住徳勝)
Certificate NBTHK Hozon Certificate
Location Mito province  (Today’s Ibaraki prefecture)
Blade Size Cutting Edge Length: 75.7 cm ( 29.8 inches)
Curvature: 1.81 cm (0.71 inches) 

Thank you for visiting our website. This sword was sold as each antique Japanese sword is one of a kind. However, we might be able to show you something similar because we have various types of swords available. Also, there are ones that aren’t listed on the website yet. Our customer service will help you find your ideal blade you will cherish for generations. Please feel free to contact us or check the list of swords. We will be more than happy to help you.

SOLD

Antique Japanese Sword Katana Signed by Mito Jyu Tokukatsu with NBTHK Hozon Certificate

【Description】

Summary

 This blade was signed by Mito Jyu Tokukatsu (水戸住徳勝) in August, 7th year of the Ansei era (1860: The end of the Edo period). Mito was located in today’s Ibaraki prefecture. Mito Jyu means he resided in this area when he forged this blade. It was common for many swordsmiths to engrave where they created their works before signing their names.

 Tokukatsu was born in the 6th year of the Bunka era (1809). That indicates this particular blade was made when he was 49 or 50. His birthname was Hikoroku, and He is also known as Katsumura Tokukatsu. He was initially an apprentice of Sekiuchi Norimune. He first signed Tokukazu (徳一). After mastering superb craftsmanship from his first master, he became an Okakae Kaji for the Mito domain. Okakae Kaji is a swordsmith who exclusively served a specific clan or domain. Becoming an Okakae Kaji was honorable for many swordsmiths back in the day. Tokukatu was one of the most prominent figures in the Mito domain during the late Edo period. He also forged blades for the head of the Mito domain, Tokugawa Nariaki (徳川斉昭).

 In the 5th year of the Kaei era (1851), Tokukatsu was ordered by Nariaki to move to Edo city and studied sword forging techniques from Unju Korekazu and Hosokawa Masayoshi, two of the most famous swordsmiths at the end of the Edo period in Edo city (Today’s Tokyo). It is said that the blades made by Tokukatsu were very popular among Samurai who served Mito domain because of their practicality and sharpness.

The Background History

 Japan enjoyed a relatively peaceful time from the early Edo period to the mid-Edo period(the 1600s-1760s) because of the stable economy and the powerful government run by Tokugawa Shogun. Samurai didn’t have many opportunities to utilize his Katana sword in public or on battlefields during this time. Thus, they carried their swords more as a symbol of their social status. The demand for weapons decreased accordingly compared to the previous Warring state period called Sengoku Jidai (1467-1600).

 However, toward the end of the Edo period(1764-1876), the Japanese sword’s role changed dramatically. With the poverty spreading in Japan, there were so many riots initiated by the civilians. Japanese sword started to play an essential role in maintaining public safety.

 Pressure from foreign countries to open Japanese borders also forced Samurai to order strong-looking swords to survive this tumultuous time. We believe many swordsmiths, including Tokukatsu, made great efforts to forged high-quality, practical blades for their masters to prepare for battles.

 There was a civil war between Tokugawa’s military government and the new Meiji government at the end of the Edo period. That means the original owner of this Katana might have seen the moment when Samurai’s life changed forever. This blade has a strong looking and must have been practical to use in that demanding time. 

 

 This blade is appraised as a Hozon Touken (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. 

【Blade】
Cutting Edge Length (Nagasa): 75.7 cm ( 29.8 inches)
Curvature (Sori): 1.81 cm (0.71 inches) 


 

Hamon
The crystalline structure which forms along the cutting edge of a blade as a result of the hardening process.
Jimon (Jihada):
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.

 The Nami (波, wave) pattern is engraved on this Fuchi Kashira. As waves’ movements continue endlessly, the wave pattern represents eternity, immortality, longevity, birth, etcetera. Also, since tides repeatedly change the shape and terrain of rocks, some people hoped for a strong will by using this motif. People used this pattern, wishing for an indomitable spirit to rechallenge time and time without giving up. Many people have appreciated its dynamic design. We estimate this Fuchi Kashira’s design is related to the Menuki’s design we will mention later.


Tsuka and Menuki: Tsuka is the handle of the Japanese sword and Menuki is its decoration.

 You would find a figure of the dragon on each side of this handle. Initially, dragons were imaginary creatures 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. A dragon was thought to reign at the top of all animals because of its odd appearance. Based on our experiences, there are lots of dragon-designed sword mountings. It shows that many Samurai warriors favored this dignified beast motif.

 If you focus on the upper side Menuki’s dragon’s hand, you will find that it brings a ball-shaped object in its hand. This item is the Nyoi Houju (如意宝珠, Cintāmaṇi), a fantasy jewel that fulfills any desire and gives out treasure, clothes, food, and drinks. Moreover, 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.

 Now, when we see the entire handle design, we realize that the appearance of the Fuchi Kashira and Menuki make a theme: the Nami ni Ryu Zu (波に龍図). It depicts dragon(s) swimming in the water. This Fuchi Kashira and Menuki might have been chosen intentionally.

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. 

 This antique iron Tsuba has Yotsu-Mokkou (四ツ木瓜) shape. The Mimi (耳, edge) part of this Tsuba is thickly finished. It seems a kind of plant pattern is engraved here and adds decorativeness to this Tsuba. Straight lines are radially carved on the entire surface of this Tsuba; it creates a chrysanthemum-like design.

Saya: Saya is the scabbard for the Japanese sword.  

Authentication Paper: NBTHK Hozon Certificate for the blade (No.3024627)

 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 2nd 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: Ibaraki 5952

 The Board of Education in Ibaraki 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.


【About us】
 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 700 Japanese swords for the past few years (~2024) 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 the export permit.

【Payment Method】
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.

【Shipping】
 We have shipped authentic Japanese swords to the USA, UK, Canada, Mexico, Germany, France, Hong Kong, Finland 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.

【Review】
 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】
 Please contact us through email, Facebook Messenger or Live Chat if you have any questions. You can find each icon on the right side of the website. Please click one of them to reach us. We will reply to you within 1-2 business days.

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.

 

MORE ANTIQUE JAPANESE SWORD FOR SALE

SWORDS WITHOUT CERTIFICATES FOR SALE

READ KATANA ARCHIVE ARTICLE(Episode1-8)

LEARN JAPANESE SWORD TERMINOLOGY

 

 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.

SOLD

You may also like…

  • $13,328.33

    DELIVERY TIME : Approx. 1-1.5 months
    *We ship from Tokyo, Japan. There might be delay in shipment depending on countries.

    SHIPPING TO :
    USA, Canada, Mexico, Germany , Belgium, France, Finland, Hong Kong, Australia
    *Please contact us prior to purchase if your country isn’t listed.

    INCLUDED : NBTHK Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate, Shirasaya Case, Koshirae Mounting, Traditional Sword Carrying Case, Sword Maintenance Kit, Full Exportation Support

    Category Katana (SHINTO)
    Age Seventh year of the Kanbun era (1667)
    Swordsmith Awataguchi Omi no Kami Tadatsuna (粟田口近江守忠綱)
    Certificate NBTHK Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate
    Location Settsu province (Today’s Osaka prefecture)
    Blade Size Cutting Edge Length: 70.9 cm (27.9 inches)
    Curvature: 1.21 cm (0.47 inches)

    More photos& videos available on request. Please feel free to contact us. 

  • $0.00

    DELIVERY TIME : Approx. 1-1.5 months
    *We ship from Tokyo, Japan. There might be delay in shipment depending on countries.

    SHIPPING TO :
    USA, UK, Canada, Mexico, Switzerland, Germany , Hong Kong, France, Australia
    *Please contact us prior to purchase if your country isn’t listed.

    INCLUDED : NBTHK Hozon Certificate , Koshirae Case, Shirasaya Case, Traditional Sword Carrying Case, Sword Maintenance Kit, Full Exportation Support

    Category Katana (KOTO)
    Age Early Muromachi period (1394-1428)
    Swordsmith Attributed to Asago Taima
    (浅古当麻: Signature Not readable)
    Certificate NBTHK Hozon Certificate
    Location Yamato province (today’s Nara prefecture) 
    Blade Size Cutting Edge Length: 68.4 cm ( 26.9 inches)
    Curvature: 2.8 cm (1.10 inches)

    Thank you for visiting our website. This sword was sold as each antique Japanese sword is one of a kind. However, we might be able to show you something similar because we have various types of swords available. Also, there are ones that aren’t listed on the website yet. Our customer service will help you find your ideal blade you will cherish for generations. Please feel free to contact us or check the list of swords. We will be more than happy to help you.

  • $11,106.94

    DELIVERY TIME : Approx. 1-1.5 months
    *We ship from Tokyo, Japan. There might be delay in shipment depending on countries.

    SHIPPING TO :
    USA, Canada, Mexico, Germany , Belgium, France, Finland, Hong Kong, Australia
    *Please contact us prior to purchase if your country isn’t listed.

    INCLUDED : NBTHK Tokubetsu Kicho Certificate , Koshirae Case (Decorative Sword Mountings), Shirasaya Case (Plain Wooden Case), Traditional Sword Carrying Bags, Sword Maintenance Kit, Full Exportation Support

    Category Katana (KOTO)
    Age Estimated Late Muromachi Period (1570-1593)
    Swordsmith Attributed to Ujisada (氏貞: Unsigned)
    Certificate NBTHK Tokubetsu Kicho Certificate
    Location Mino (Today’s Gifu prefecture)⇒ Owari (Aichi prefecture)
    Blade Size Cutting Edge Length: 73.0 cm ( 28.7 inches)
    Curvature: 3.03 cm (1.19 inches)

    Thank you for visiting our website. This sword was sold as each antique Japanese sword is one of a kind. However, we might be able to show you something similar because we have various types of swords available. Also, there are ones that aren’t listed on the website yet. Our customer service will help you find your ideal blade you will cherish for generations. Please feel free to contact us or check the list of swords. We will be more than happy to help you.